I still haven’t checked my Powerball ticket numbers. As my pal Bob Becker once said of these enormous lottery jackpots, he doesn’t buy a ticket because of any great chance of winning. Rather, Becker spends the two bucks for the pleasure of fantasizing of what he’d do with the money.
After taxes, my Powerball take-home would be somewhere north of $500 million. Not Wayne Crawford rich. But, still enough to keep several hit men full-time on the payroll. Well. Let’s not limit life’s possibilities. Several hit women full-time on the payroll. Attractive, wanton, curvy women. In bikinis.
As I approach middle age, I realize it would be folly to take the entire $1 billion-plus in payments stretched over 26 years. I’m not worried I won’t live to be 100. I’m just not confident there’s going to be a recognizable USA here 20 minutes hence to pay off my justly deserved winnings. Oh the damage I could do locally with $500 million.
I’d buy, of course, The Mighty Signal. I’d change the name back to The Newhall Signal, just to tick off the snooty subscribers in Stevenson Ranch. We’d print a daily sister publication for them called The Stevenson Ranch Stutterer’s Signal and it would be six times larger than The Newhall Signal because it would be printed in, of course, stuttering. “Tuh-tuhh-tuh-tuh-tuh day’s wuh-wuh-wuh-wuh-wuh-wuh-weather…” I’d have reporters invent stories about those Letters to the Editor writers I don’t particularly have any use for about how they were indicted on child pornography and kidnapping charges. Giant surprised perp-walk mug shots with outstretched hands trying to block the camera lens. Home address in the lead graph. Misquotes about how they were glad they did it and would do it all over again if they had the chance. Then, to show I haven’t completely lost my Journalism Moral Compass, I’d run a teeny boxed story on page 164 several months later with a chagrinned-face emoji that simply notes: “Just kidding…!”
With my $500 million, I’d get the truck painted. And depending how far away I was from Saturday’s Catholic confession, I’d get the bikini hit girls painted, as well. Two coats. With primer. Being worth more than the local archdiocese AND Wayne Crawford, when the priest orders me to recite a couple rosaries, I’d calmly reply: “Padre. You say them…”
I’d buy the southeast block of Main Street at Market and finally get around to getting my Scared o’ Bears Ranch World Corporate Headquarters skyscraper built. Sixty-eight stories. There’d be a solid emerald giant globe on top with a brass snarling grizzly bear atop. At night, bolts of lightning would escape from the bruin’s eyes, terrifying the insufferable yuppy diners sipping watery margaritas in the various sidewalk eateries nearby. Loudspeakers would blare The Macarena 24-7, to drive away the rodents and Kiwanis. Gallows would hang ominously on the Market Street side for people who displease me. And, being worth $500 million, rest assured.
Many displease me.
Like those cowardly Hart High District Trustees inbreds who murdered my Indian mascot. Of course, I’m a pragmatist. I can understand how the City o’ SClarita’s Planning Commission might object to quarter-mile-tall ominous Gothic Batman skyscraper in the middle of Downtown Newhall. But then, that’s why I have a staff of can-do hit girls. In bikinis. And can-do, come-hither smiles.
“WHAT!?!?! No building permits, a massive waterfall and helicopter pad? Gals. March those Can’t See The Big Picture pocket protector commissioners to the gallows. Because they disobeyed, no bagpipes. Just kazoos. And banjos.”
On ground level, there’d be a few shops at my office HQ, including The Way Station East, not to be confused with The Regular Way Station at 9th & Main. At Way Stay East, they’d serve beef stew. No. Damn. Questions. Asked.
Next door would be a fancy Western Bikini Wear, Saddle Emporium & IBM Selectric Typewriter Repair Shop so me and the hit girls won’t have far to walk for errands. I’d bring back Newhall Pharmacy and the soda fountain of my boyhood because I still miss those tuna sandwiches on toasted wheat, vanilla Cokes and a retro comic book selection, no wishy-washy, humdrummia Archie comics, either.
Although, with a half-billion dollars in the local banks, I suppose I could hire some Hollywood fetching actresses to dress up as Betty and Veronica.
Say it with me.
In bikinis and Uzis.
I wouldn’t construct a Downtown Newhall Sperm Bank. I’d just have a giant jumbotron neon sign that lights up with Downtown Newhall Sperm Bank and below the name and giant photo of someone local who irks me. Someone from Zonta. A dog that goes “marf” instead of “woof.” Some daydreaming AYSO youth soccer player who dogged it from years gone by.
Like, Randy Wrage…
I’d get a pool table for my office, at the corner of Market & Main. And a dragon, like on that old TV show, “Game of Thrones.”
It’s not that I’d use all my winnings on frivolous things. I’d fix many local issues, like solving the Homeless and Democrat Problem by feeding both to my giant hissing dragon. As if a dragon could actually digest a Democrat without leaving carbon scat.
With that kind of serious lucky lotto money, I’d dig up all the bronze Walk of Western Stars saddles on Main and replace them with cowboy and Indian stars if not more deserving, then more irritating. Like Yosemite Sam. Or Zsa Zsu Pitts. Or Cal Worthington. Or the Rabid Wolf from “Old Yeller.” Or Michelle Obama. Or Mowgli.
I’d bribe our five City Council members to start every meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance. Only after every phrase, they’d have to add, “… in a bikini…”
Sigh. Who said, “Money can’t buy happiness?” Find them. Drag them kicking and weeping to the gallows, have the curvy hit girls string them high over at Market and Main…
John Boston is the most prolific satirist in world history. Visit his johnbostonbooks.com, but, if he actually DID win the $1 billion Powerball, there’s no great sense of urgency to buy anything…