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The Ticket

By Kurt Kitasaki
The minute I heard the numbers on the news station, I knew. I knew my wife would kill me because I had misplaced our lottery ticket several days ago. I heard the announcer read my lucky numbers. The jackpot was a record $240 million.

Then I relaxed for a few seconds, I thought maybe I had more time to find the ticket. My wife always listened for the numbers on the televisions in the bar where she worked, but she told me that morning her boss would be shutting them down to install new ones. So I figured I had at least six to eight hours in my search.

A minute later I received a call, my wife screamed, “Hello Mr. Millionaire!” Trembling, I asked how she knew about the numbers. Apparently my big mouthed sister-in-law who’s so lazy she has nothing to do but stay at home and watch TV heard the numbers , and called her. (She remembered the numbers I used because all of them were the scores of her previous IQ tests.)

She said, “I just told my boss what he could do with all those un-cleaned shot glasses! My sister’s picking me up. We’ll be over in an hour!”

After she hung up, I tore apart my apartment. In a few minutes it looked like a half dozen tornadoes had spent the night in our living room. I heard the sweat from my face hit the wooden floors.

Where did I place that ticket? I tried to retrace my steps over the past several days. After work I would go home, grab a beer, sit on the couch, turn on the TV set. Actually this was my pattern for the past ten years.

I had to relax, I opened a can of beer and laid with my legs outstretched on my soon to be re-possessed sofa. Maybe the lottery officials would just give us the money, after all I’ve used the same numbers for the past six months. I mean I could show them my previous lottery stubs. Surely they would much rather give the money to us rather than donating it to some worthless cause like the state educational fund. What good would that do? Look how much it had educated me.

I picked up my cell-phone to call the lottery claims office. “Listen I won the 240 million dollar jackpot, but there seems to be a slight problem. I lost the ticket. Would you accept my word that I bought the ticket?” I heard the employee scream with laughter.

“Miss this isn’t a joke. I’m willing to submit to a lie detector test if that would help.” Seconds later I heard her mumbling off the phone, then I heard everyone in the office howling with laughter. Her supervisor then picked up the phone, still dying with laughter, she said, “Sir for 240 million anyone in this room could make themselves pass a polygraph.” She hung up.

My wife would be home soon. I could feel my face go pale. There was a nervous convulsive twitch in my upper cheek. I decided to try something desperate. I picked up my phone again and called the psychic network to speak with one of their counselors. Maybe they could figure out where I placed the ticket. “Hello,” the operator answered. I yelled, “Give me your best psychic! I don’t care what the cost is!” I gave her my credit card number. “Well that would be me.”

“Listen I misplaced the 240 million dollar lottery ticket. You have to tell me where it is before my wife comes home.” I asked. “Sir if you misplaced a 240 million dollar lottery ticket, then you also misplaced your brain along with it.”

 “Listen Miss I can’t believe I’m paying five dollars a minute to speak to you!

“Calm down Sir, I’m a little slow, since I lost my tarot cards. I’m using my uncle’s pinochle deck instead.”

“I’m running out of time! You have to do something!”

“Ok I’ll use all my psychic and normal powers to help you. I think I can solve the problem, but I’ll have to charge you more than the basic rate.”

“Thank God. How much do you want?”

“Well, about 240 million dollars.”

I felt the blood rush to my face in anger. I came very close to swearing when I heard the door open. My wife entered the room, with my sister-in-law, she yelled, “Here’s my millionaire!”

The psychic hearing my wife said, “I’m predicting you’ll be dead within the next hour. Wow this job is really fun. I have to tell my boss I finally got one right!”

I hung up the phone, my clothes drenched in sweat.

“Ah listen about that ticket.”

“What is it Mr. Trump?”

I knew she was going to kill me. So I headed towards the window to jump out the twelve story building. Right after I lifted the window she pulled out the ticket from her purse.

“By the way do you think I should make a copy of this?”

“How did that get in your purse?”

My sister-in-law answered, “That was me. I found it on your desk when I visited a few days ago. I thought it would be safer with her so I put it in her purse.”

I walked over to her, grabbed her by the collar and began dragging her towards the window before my wife stopped me.

 

 

 

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