Oh, like you’re above scamming your co-workers. They’re all terrible and you know it. Old Bob brings the stinkiest egg salad sandwich every day and Louise won’t shut the hell up about anything. GODDAMN IT YOU OLD HAG I DON’T CARE.

Besides, we know you’re all about the passive income. That’s why you’re here. Well, that and you don’t know how to use the back button. You’re all only 14 useless tool bars away from being my grandma.

Anyhoo, that’s enough preamble. Let’s talk about how easy it is to scam your co-workers out of $100 per week.

“You could get lucky!”

Every wage slave dreams of leaving their screwy job, preferably giving the proverbial middle finger to their boss on the way out. Hey, even Homer Simpson did it.


Some of you try to do this by creating a huge savings rate, channeling every spare cent into investments while pitching a tent in your own living room and eating from your neighbor’s trash. “Hey, are you going to finish those coffee grounds, fat cat? Sucker.”

Yes, pitching a tent in your own living room rather than pay for heat is an actual suggestion from the Early Retirement Extreme book. Presumably made with a straight face, too.

Most people want nothing to do with saving aggressively, preferring to spend their cash on Meghan Trainor t-shirts and glue sticks. You know, the essentials. So they look to the lottery, dropping down tens of dollars on tickets to the big draw.

I’ve made fun of lottery players before, but I can actually see the other side of it. Where else can the average person turn $5 into many millions? You could even argue the fantasy aspect of it alone is worth the price of admission.

Here’s the correct answer to the question of what to do with a million dollars:


Many workplaces have group lottery funds, probably because these people can all sympathize just how much work sucks. So everybody chucks in $2 or $5 or whatever, and somebody is in charge of buying lottery tickets.

That person needs to be you. And then, instead of spending the cash on lottery tickets, you pocket it.

The logistics

This scam is ridiculously easy to pull off.

Step one is to find a bunch of patsies. This will be surprisingly easy. Regular people live for the lottery. It’s unbelievable.

Next, make them take their imaginary lottery potential seriously. Why bother with a dollar or two dollars? It’s five dollars to enter, dumbass. Look at how the odds are better at $5 per pop! It’s like we can’t lose!

Don’t worry about somebody calling you out on that bullshit, by the way. The average person can barely multiply double digits. They know odds about as well as I know the plot of the latest Nicholas Sparks book. Actually, everyone knows the plot of that garbage. I’ve seen at least one of the movies.

Once you have 20-25 people in your pool, it’s time to start actually doing the math. We’ll stick with the Lotto 6/49 for this post, which gives you six numbers out of the first 49 integers, as well as a bonus 10-digit number for a bonus draw. This costs $3 with an extra $1 for the bonus number, which is called the encore or extra, depending on what part of the country you’re in.

Don’t worry about the bonus number. It’s an all-or-nothing scenario. Like hell we’d ever pay that out.

The draw works like this. The lottery people pick six numbers and then a seventh bonus number. This is the bonus number you’ll have to worry about, at least a little.

Next, we have to figure out the odds of actually winning in the main draw. If you get two out of six numbers, you’ll win a free play (a $3 value). This happens about once every 8.3 times you play. The next prizes are 2/6 numbers and the bonus number, which happens about one out of every 81.2 times you play. That’s a prize of $5. The next level is matching three out of six numbers, which pays $10 and happens once every 56.7 times.

Because the group is playing so often, it’ll win at least something every week. $100 per week at $3 per play means we’re looking at 33.3 plays per week. So the group will win $10 once every 1.7 weeks and $5 once every 2.4 weeks. You’d also maybe have to pay out a bigger prize every 31 weeks when the group matches four numbers.

So to make it easy, I’d pay out $10 every two weeks and $5 once every three weeks, along with announcing free plays damn near every week. Naturally, convince the group to let the free plays ride while continuing to contribute their usual $100 per week.

I’ve condensed everything into a table for y’all.

Week Collected Paid Out Profit
1 $100 $0 $100
2 $100 (free play) $10 $90
3 $100 (free play! whoo! $5 $95
4 $100 $10 $90
5 $100 (two free plays this time!) $0 $100
6 $100 (more free plays) $15 $85
7 $100 (and so on) $10 $90
8 $100 (free play, bitches!) $0 $100
9 $100 (free! free! free!) $10 $90
10 $100 $5 $95
11 $100 (more free plays!) $10 $90
12 $100 (four this time!) $5 $95
Total $1,200 $80 $1,120

Say the once every 31 week payout works out to $100. That works out to a current value of $3.22 per week, decreasing your expected profit by $38.64 per twelve week period. So instead of pocketing $1,120 per twelve weeks, you’re looking at a profit closer to $1,080.

BONUS SCAM: Instead of paying out the $5 or $10 proceeds, volunteer to save them and spend them on snacks, beverages, etc. for the whole office. Free muffins, baby.

What happens if someone wants to see the tickets?

“Oh man! I forgot them at home/my desk/at that hooker’s house. I’ll let you see them tomorrow.” It’s up to you whether you then rush out to buy tickets or you just wait it out until nosy Louise loses interest.

And that’s about it. The hardest part of pulling off this scam is lying to your co-workers. If you can pull that off with regularity, the rest is easy.

Tell everyone, yo!