See that couple over there, on the right?
They seem pretty average, don’t you think? The guy looks like a bit of a grouch, to be honest, but aside from that – nothing remarkable, right?
Wrong. That is Phoenix couple Diane and Kerry Carmichael, and they have just won the lottery for the second time.
Yes. That’s right. Twice.
Back in 1995, the Carmichaels won $2.5 million in the Arizona Lottery, and the world rejoiced right along with them.
But then, last week, they won another $1 million in the Powerball. The same couple. Who were already millionaires.
For starters, I can’t decide if people who win the lottery should graciously bow out and not enter anymore, or if they should continue to enter because they can afford to put back into the kitty for the next winners.
Anyway, it doesn’t matter, because I don’t like them. Especially because Mrs. Carmichael, our gal Diane, said this to a reporter at azfamily.com: “Good things come in threes. Two down, one to go!”
They are still receiving $125,000 a year as the proceeds from the first win. The retired couple plans to speak to a financial planner now that they have another $1 million in the kitty.
If there’s any justice, the planner will tell them to invest in gramophones. No, that’s mean of me. Fax machines.
The luckiest thing that ever happened to me was, unfortunately, the first time I gambled upon reaching the legal age.
My friend and I went to a casino and each put a measly $5 into the slot machines. She lost it all; I walked out with $90.
It was a terrible lesson to learn, and it was probably for the best that the next time I gambled, expecting to win 18 times what I put in, I lost $20. I was so disappointed, I’ve never gambled since.
Luck can be a fickle beauty, can’t she? First she giveth, then she taketh away.
Except if you’re the Carmichaels. Then she giveth and bloody giveth again.
So I was feeling some fairly negative thoughts about Lady Luck this week when I stumbled upon a frankly lovely story about two Iowa friends who had an encounter with luck last week.
Abbey Donohue, 29, was having a look on Facebook and saw that her friend of four years, Paula O’Brien, had posted a link to an article about her niece, who had been given up for adoption 29 years ago.
“On Sept. 19, 1983, my very first niece was born and given up for adoption. I know it wasn’t an easy decision for my brother to make, but it was the right one for that baby girl,” Paula posted.
Abbey did a double take. She was adopted — and that was her birthday.
“I was like, ‘Oh my god, it’s me’,” Abbey told the Quad-City Times.
Indeed it was. Paula’s brother, who has a different last name, and his then-girlfriend gave their baby up for adoption in 1983, when Paula was 11 years old.
Some 25 years later, Paula makes a friend at a party. She and Abbey have a lot in common, and people even comment that they look a bit alike.
A chance comment four years later leads Abbey to the biological family she never knew.
Although she said she hadn’t felt the need to find them, she’s pleased now and their bond is like sisters, Paula said.
So you see, Luck can be kind of sweet sometimes, turning up a connection no one knew was there. Bringing people closer together. Making lives better.
And I suppose, Luck made life better for the bloody Carmichaels too. I say begrudgingly.
But I tell ya, if they win another lottery, I am going to hit the roof.
Especially if Kerry still refuses to smile about it.