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A Lucky Winner

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Phyllis Penzo was a waitress at Sal's Pizzeria in Yonkers, New York, for twenty-four years. During that long tenure, she saw nice customers, difficult customers, generous tippers, and skinflints. But Robert Cunningham, a police detective from nearby Dobbs Ferry, was in a class by himself. Cunningham gave Penzo a tip of $142,857.50 a year for twenty years.

Cunningham, a thirty-year police veteran, was a regular diner at Sal's, where he liked to order linguine with clam sauce and maintain a steady flow of banter with Penzo, other employees, and regular customers. True to his lighthearted style, Cunningham was making a sort of joke on Friday evening, March 30, 1984, when he offered his favorite waitress an unusual tip: a half-interest in a lottery ticket. Each picked three of the six numbers; Cunningham walked across the street and bought their ticket.

Penzo laughed, then forgot the incident until the next night, when the detective walked into Sal's Pizzeria after work with the winning ticket triumphantly clutched in his hand. It was worth six million dollars: three million for each of them. Cunningham, who ordinarily might have left a couple of dollars on the restaurant table, had no regrets about splitting the prize. After all, he says, Penzo helped pick the winning numbers.


Anonymous said...

I remember when this happened. I thought it was so cool that he kept his word and shared his winnings. So often people get greedy in situations like that.

I wonder why it is that when you have just a little it's sometimes way easier to share than when you have a lot!

Anonymous said...

Ok guys... I haven't won anything at all yet. But I did get this in my email this morning... I'm sure it's a scam (I don't think I can win a lottery I didn't enter).. but at least it's a start??

UK LOTTERY ONLINE NOTIFICATION DESK. UK Lottery Headquarters: Customer Service 28 TANFIELD ROAD, CROYDON.LONDON Ref: BTL/491OXI/04 Batch: 12/25/0304 WINNING NOTIFICATION We happily announce to you the draw (#1102) of the UK NATIONAL LOTTERY,online Sweepstakes International program held on May 1st 2007. Your e-mail address attached to ticket number: 56475600545 with Serial number 5368/02 drew the lucky numbers:[13]Bonus Ball, which subsequently won you the lottery in the 2nd category i.ematch 5 plus bonus. You have therefore been approved to claim a total sum of ?1,850,000.00 (One Million Eight hundred & Fifty Thousand Pounds sterling) in cash...

At least I can win pretend money!

Cindy H said...

Yes, all the UK lottery things you get unsolicited are scams. And EVERYTHING from Nigeria is a scam! I think we already talked about that one, didn't we?

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