Through a nice little run of good luck, or bad luck if you’ve been buying tickets, the current Mega Millions jackpot sits at a tidy $500 million. If it’s yours, you’ll get $19 million spread over 26 years or a lump sum payment just shy of $360 million. Before you get too excited, those numbers are pre-tax so you’ll only take home just over half of that. Hardly seems worth it.
But if you do win, even after you pay your taxes and shower riches upon your favorite writer (hint, hint), you’ll have quite a chunk of change to burn through. Think of the fun you can have:
- Start every day by threatening to cut your kids out of your will. Their bedrooms will never be cleaner. For extra fun, hire a team to mess up the rooms at random times throughout the day.
- Buy a new car every week. Don’t like it? Just leave it at the side of the road and grab a cab to your nearest Ferrari dealer for another one. If you like the cab, you can buy that too.
- Buy a $600,000 solid gold, handmade rocking horse for your newborn. Performers Jay-Z and Beyoncé did this in January.
- Hire Justin Bieber to perform in your living room, every day of the rest of your life. This also has the altruistic benefit of monopolizing his time so he will be unable to perform for anyone else.
- Buy Segway scooters at almost $7,000 per piece for several of your closest co-workers. Miami Dolphins running back Reggie Bush did this last year.
- Fly back and forth to Tokyo every Monday for a year. You like airline miles? Think free upgrades forever. It would be like being a management consultant, but with less travel.
- Purchase a $475,000, platinum-wrapped iPad from Stuart Hughes, featuring 85.5 carats of flawless diamonds. It weighs almost 6 pounds, so you’ll also need to hire someone to help you carry it. If you have kids, the same company can sell you a gold wrapped Nintendo Wii for just under $500,000.
- Act however you want. Only poor people are rude, inconsiderate, and mean spirited. Rich people are colorful, eccentric and endlessly entertaining. You and your sister might even wind up with your own reality show on E!.
- Buy a suite for your favorite sports franchise. Be careful with this one, though. Concessions inside stadiums are really expensive, and it might be more realistic for you to just buy the team.
- Feed your dog $300 per-pound Kobe beef. He won’t know the difference, but his private canine cardiologist will.
- Open a Twitter account and promise to burn a $1,000 bill every time someone tweets the hash tag #(InsertYourNameHere)IsAwesome
- Hire Stephen Hawking to tutor your kids, but you can forget about hiring Albert Pujols to play catch with them. His new contract with the Los Angeles Angels was $240 million over ten years. After you pay your taxes, he’s out of your league.
Even if you don’t hit the 1 in 175,711,536 chance at the jackpot, just dreaming about what you can do with the money makes the $1 investment worth it. Realistically, dreaming is all you’ll get to do. I already bought the winner, and I’m not sharing. If you think that makes me a jerk, OK. But after I win and become rich, I’ll be hilarious.