A New Jersey mother of two is a rich woman today, thanks entirely to the blunder of a store clerk and very poor listener.
Oksana Zaharov, 46, from Edgewater, New Jersey was shopping in Manhattan asked a store clerk for a $1 New York Lottery scratch-off ticket. The clerk, evidently checked out around the holidays, instead handed Ms. Zaharov a $10 Set For Life ticket. Instead of correcting the clerk, she just accepted the ticket.
Ms. Zaharov said, via Huffington Post:
“When the clerk handed me the wrong ticket I felt bad, so I decided to just go ahead and buy it,” the mother of two told the lottery in a press release. “I actually used the ticket as a bookmark for a couple weeks before I decided to scratch it.”
How the hell can you leave a scratch ticket unscratched? Shit starts taunting me the second I buy it.
The New Lottery reported that Zaharov opted to receive her $5 million in 19 annual payments of $260,000, or $172,068 after taxes, plus one additional payment of $60,000, or $39,708 after taxes.
“I never win anything,” she told the lottery. “I was sure the ticket was fake. It wasn’t until I brought it into the office that I knew it was for real.”
Zaharov says she will pay for her children’s college with the money and will fund a trip to the Bahamas with her family. There is no news yet on whether she’ll fork over some of that cash to the clerk who made it all possible.
PSA: The Power Ball cash option has hit $291 million. The odds of winning are a favorable 1 in 292,201,338. Ain’t bad.
[h/t Huffington Post]