Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Word of the Month for December 2015: Italian Lottery

it's a numbers game
It's that time of year - to spend recklessly on stuff you don't need for people that don't need it.  Yep, the holiday season is in full swing.  I know this because the other day a close acquaintance handed me a lottery ticket and exclaimed, "Merry Christmas!"  As I gazed down at my "prize," I hearkened back to when the California Lottery was in its infancy with cries of "it's for the children" ringing out on every commercial. 

In any event, the idea of the lottery was brought home when a young man came into our law library. An enterprising person, young man had been charged with California Penal Code sections 330, 332, 336.9, as well as a few other things associated with developing his own version of the California Lottery (but with dice and cards).  Since the State of California doesn't like direct competition, he was arrested and charged and was now looking for a way to get out of jail free without any consequences.  Uh, yeah.

Of course all of this brings us to our word of the month ITALIAN LOTTERY (aka numbers game). According to Black's Law Dictionary, an ITALIAN LOTTERY is a game 
in which the players typically choose a series of numbers and win if their chosen numbers match a series of number drawn randomly, often the following day.  Numbers games are traditionally associated with organized crime and because of their odds (1:1,000), they are noted for being rigged and making large profits for racketeers.
On it's face, anyone charged with running a numbers game is looking at some hard time in the pokey. What I could suggest to young man is that he take a look at:


While not everyone can enjoy a care-free holiday season, you should know that if ever you're stressing about something, the good folks at your local county law library probably have something that can help you on your merry.