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What would YOU do with half a billion dollars?

March 29, 2012 - Jennifer Brookens
So Mega Millions is at its largest jackpot in history, and chances are someone in the U.S. is going to win hundreds of millions of dollars Friday night. (The jackpot is at $500 million at the time of this writing, but remember how the tax man will get to the prize first!)

Needless to say, with all the office pools and ticket purchases, people are already imagining how they'd spend that kind of money...

The No. 1 answer I always hear is obvious to most of us working slobs: pay off our debts! Then a few other common answers follow it: * Put money into the kids' college funds * Quit my job and retire! * Travel * Buy a new house/car/truck

Some of the more considerate ones are thinking of their favorite charities, making sure the Humane Society will never need to ask for money again, or making a hefty contribution to the March of Dimes, American Cancer Society, or other organized charity.

But some of the more greedy say 'no way,' to charities, justifying it by saying if the charities know you got it, they'll always want it. These are the same people that say they want to buy an island in international waters and hide themselves and their millions away from the rest of the world... Okay, say hi to the spirit of Howard Hughes for me while you're there...

I've liked some of the more creative answers. One boy called into a radio station and said he'd get flying lessons and purchase an F-22 Raptor! Ah youth! My daughter said she wants to quit school and go on a cruise while I think my boy would just love to have a real bulldozer and John Deere tractor in his backyard. (I'm sure city ordinances would have something to say about that). And my husband would probably approach Ziggy Wilf for ownership of the Vikings and/or pay for the Vikings stadium himself (Heaven forbid he could just settle for permanent box seats!)

As for me, what would I do? Well, yes the common answers of getting rid of debts, college funds and a little fun time would come to pass... And after that? Would I finally finish the many story ideas and novels I have bouncing in my head? Perhaps I could just learn to enjoy life without the rat race. I know it shouldn't take half a billion to enjoy life, but a little less worry would certainly help. Money can't buy happiness, as the saying goes. But in these tough and trying times, some financial security does bring peace of mind.

And I've always wanted to try out a jet-ski... ;)


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Just a dollar and a dream...