Ever seen “Waking Ned Devine”?
It’s an Irish comedy about how 52 villagers hatch an audacious plan to share the wealth after one of them wins the national lottery — and expires from the shock.
Discovering their deceased friend in his cottage, one old villager says to the other with a sigh:
“There’d have been a mighty party.”
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When they learn the village’s winnings amount to 7 million pounds — about $10.7 million — they wind up throwing one anyway.
It’s exactly what I would do.
Especially if I had the $61.5 million Powerball ticket that hit Wednesday in Lakewood Ranch.
I’d call John Horne, Sean Murphy or Popi’s and say, let’s celebrate!
There’d be a mighty party, all right.
Whether it’s paid for with part of the one lump sum $34.5 million, or $2 million a year over 30 years.
Of course, my wife would have a little something to do with that decision.
Sherri’s a banker.
She’s also the one who regularly plays Lotto.
We’ve read about all the headaches and hassles hitting the lottery can bring.
All the new “friends” and new “family” that come with it.
I can account for all my family members and my wife can with hers.
We’ve got enough scoundrels already.
Regardless, I’ve got to believe we have enough sense not to end up like those lottery winners who come to ruin.
Like the poor Lakeland sap who took home $17 million in 2006 and was found murdered last January.
Worn down by his newfound wealth, Abraham Shakespeare told friends, “I’d have been better off broke.”
Still, you can’t help imagining what you’d do if you did hit the jackpot.
Fix up the house and pay off the mortgage, for sure.
Take another Caribbean cruise.
Visit Ireland again.
Buy a few more Hawiian shirts. In Hawaii.
My wife would have some big spending ideas, too.
I’d be afraid to ask.
I know one thing.
I like to kid her about how I’ll retire before she does.
She’d beat me to it.
We’d do the right thing with our community, too.
There are numerous worthy causes around town that come to mind.
They wouldn’t have to find me.
I’d drop in at Sister Nora Brick’s Stillpoint House of Prayer & Healing with a nice check just to see the smile on her face.
Then I’d cross 14th Street West to give another to United Way boss Jerry Koontz.
He wouldn’t have to sing for it, either.
It’d be rewarding to be able to do that kind of good.
Maybe Sherri will hit the jackpot on one of those lottery tickets she buys every Saturday morning.
There’d be a mighty party, indeed.
Mannix About Manatee, by columnist Vin Mannix, is about people and issues in Manatee County. Please call Vin Mannix at 745-7055, write him at Bradenton Herald, P.O. Box 921, Bradenton, FL. 34206 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include a phone number for verification purposes.