Willy Wonka-esque mayhem has infiltrated New Jersey as the Mega Millions jackpot climbs to a world record 540 million dollars. 540- million- dollars. You bet your ass once my cheesecake is finished cooking I’ll be buying some tickets. But may I remind you; it only takes one ticket to win.
Someone should tell that to rookie NBA star Chris Singleton who tweeted that he planned on spending $10,000 on lotto tickets for the big drawing. I on the other hand, will spend all of $3.00 on tickets. Mainly because once I fill my Jeep up with gas this afternoon, I’ll only have about $3.00 left in my wallet.
The Mega Millions madness reminds me of Roald Dahl’s 1964 novel, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. In the novel, the world was consumed by the possibility to enter Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory and people spent thousands of dollars on candy bars just to maybe uncover one of the golden tickets. Charlie spent a stray dollar, that his family desperately needed, on a winning chocolate bar.
Yesterday I asked the people I worked with, along with some customers, “If you won the lotto, what would you spend the money on.” One of my co-workers said he’d buy a big boat, hire someone to steer it, live on the boat for the rest of his life, and employ me as he designated boat baker.
One customer, who said he had a feeling that he would win the big bucks, said he’d build a bat-cave, maybe even two of them. Since he felt so strongly about his early lotto win, I reminded him not to forget his local Starbucks baristas- especially me.
If I won the lotto, I’d:
- Move out of my parents house and buy my dream home a mere 5 minutes away. It’s a turn of the 20th century style home, formally an inn, which has been beat to death with hard economic times, bad weather, and if my gut feeling is accurate, maybe some termites. I’d fix her up and turn the barn in the backyard into a massive kitchen.
- I’d pay my parents back for college/
- I’d pay off any loans of my family and friends.
- I’d go for my master’s degree in PR writing OR open up a coffee shop.
- I’d spend a year backpacking through Europe, starting with Iceland (More on Iceland to come).
- I’d throw a Monster Ball in my backyard with myself, Lady Gaga, some close family and friends, along with some other Little Monsters.
But these things would only scratch the surface of 540 million dollars. It’s just such a large amount of money that truth be told, I would never want to be responsible for. So yes, I’ll join Mega Million Mania today and buy a few tickets just to have in on the excitement, but am I expecting to be sipping tea, poolside with Lady Gaga in a month from now, definitely not. Though that sounds pretty nice.
The lotto is a vehicle for wishful thinking, only a lucky few will be able to turn their lotto wish list into a reality.
As for now, here is a lottery and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory inspired treat, Chewy Double Chocolate Chip Cookies. They’re so good that you’ll abandon your lotto dreams and dream mainly in chocolate, which is how I prefer to dream. I typed dream way too many times.
Chewy Double Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 Cup butter, room temperature,
1 1/2 Cups white sugar
1 Teaspoon vanilla extract
2 Cups all- purpose flour
2/3 Cup cocoa powder
1 Teaspoon baking soda
1/2 Teaspoon salt
2 Cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Preheat the oven to 350 Degrees Fahrenheit
- In a mixer, beat the butter and sugar. Add in the vanilla, followed by the eggs one at a time. Beat until Fluffy.
- In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda. Then add this to the wet ingredients and mix until it just comes together.
- Add in the chocolate chips and mix until it is all evenly incorporated.
- Using a medium sized melon-baller, scoop out the dough and place it on a greased cookie sheet until you have no more batter. Press the tops down slightly with the palm of your hand and bake in the oven to 8-10 minutes.
- Do not cook for more than ten minutes or else the cookies will be hard and not soft. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Will yield 24 cookies.
“And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.” ~ Roald Dahl