Sunday, December 26, 2010

Winning the Powerball: Your Odds are Better Playing Golf

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After a night of festivities with family and friends, we sat around the tv waiting to see the Powerball numbers recited on the news.  One of the dads was kind enough to buy everyone at the Christmas party a Powerball ticket.  The tickets sparked conversation: "Would you take the lump sum or would you take the yearly payments?" "How much would you share with the group?"  "Where would you travel?"  You could feel the excitement in the air as the screen revealed the numbers.  "Damnit, I didn't get a single number right!" I shouted.  My brother was the only lucky one from the group, he had the Powerball number correct which is worth $3, he continued to brag the rest of the night.  But truthfully, we know its hard as hell to win the Powerball.  The lottery website lists the odds of winning at 1 in 195 million, essentially it's like picking someone at random from the United States.  While thinking about the odds of winning, I couldn't help but think about how golf odds appear relative to such a large number.

For citation lovers, I will use About as the source of golf odds:

-Average player making a hole-in-one on an average par 3: 1 in 12,000
-Average player making a hole-in-one on a 200 yard par 3: 1 in 150,000
-Odds of making a double eagle on a par 5: 1 in 1,000,000
-One player making two holes-in-one during the same round: 1 in 67,000,000

On the bottom of the spectrum, the average golfer is 16 times more likely to hit a hole in one on a par 3 than win the jackpot.  While on the opposite side of the spectrum, the average golfer is 3 times more likely to make 2 holes in one during the same round than win the jackpot.  Moral of the story: When deciding to spend $50, choose a round of golf instead of 50 lottery tickets, you'll have better expected value!

Keep on swingin,

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Last Minute Christmas List Ideas: Curiously Awesome Golf Gifts from Vat19

Image from

If you are like me, you procrastinated on Christmas shopping and now only 10 days before the big day to find gifts. Every year I feel the gifts I buy for my family are boring: an album, clothing, gift card etc. Luckily, this year I was able to find the awesome site They have a site dedicated to fun and extraordinary products you can't find at your average store. It's like an online Fun Shop or Spencer's Gifts, I used to spend alot of mall time in these stores growing up. Anyways, if you dig deeper within the site you can find a category devoted to Vat19 Golf Products. A total of 12 items on the page, all reasonably priced and only 1 is out of stock, not bad given the season. I highly recommend you buy the golfer in your family one of these gifts but don't forget to check out the rest of Vat19. Some of my favorites include: 3 pound gummy worm and a Pac-Man stapler. I wish everyone the best of luck finding the perfect gift. Mother Nature was generous this past week, giving Minnesota the gift of 2 ft of snow and a broken Metrodome. I'm asking Santa buy me a vacation someplace warm to play golf for a week! haha

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all!!

Keep on swingin,

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