In the email this morning, I got an email from a well known publishing house that encouraged me to click on a link to win big prizes and lots of money. I didn’t do it, but just deleted the email, thinking to myself, “No one ever wins this stuff.” But, was I right? If so, WHO wins this stuff?
I got to thinking of if I’ve ever actually won anything, and can only think of two different occassions…once was a skateboard, and another time was a raggedy Anne doll.
So, who is the big winner among us? Anyone ever won anything?
I just won a video camera from a local radio station about a month ago.
I’m a pretty regular radio-station winner. In my lifetime, I’d guess I’ve won a few dozen videogames, scads of CDs and free meals, a New Year’s Eve party pass at Dave & Buster’s for Y2K, and (once) a ski vacation.
Nothing compared to my brother, who won a secondary prize from a Publisher’s Clearinghouse-like agency, and ended up pocketing after taxes about $8000. Lucky bastich.
IIRC, there are at least a few Jeopardy! winners here at the SDMB, and quite a few former contestants as well.
I was a sweepstaker for a while, and I won a few things. If you want to invest a lot of time and postage, you might win a few things, too. However, the Publishers’ Clearing House mails out so many solicitations that your chances of winning are about the same as winning the lottery. Remember, a sweepstakes cannot require you to buy anything. It’s the law. I never bought any products for anything I won. PCH is notorious for making it seem that you have already won, and that you have to buy subscriptions to win. In the fine print on page four, they’ll explain your tiny chances and the fact that you don’t have to buy anything.
Lets see – the last contest I was a free CD for being able to identify the song “American Patrol.”
I also won something (it’s been over 25 years) for identifying the book “Babbitt” by Sinclair Lewis in a local radio contest. I had just finished reading it at the time.
When I was a kid, I won a toaster in a punchboard* booth at the local block party**. I gave it to my grandmother and she used it for years.
*A punchboard was made out of cardboard and about a half-inch thick. It was covered with spots to be punched – indentations covered with thin paper. You’d pay a fee, then punch out a hole with a metal probe. A small piece of paper was in each hole with a number on it. Certain numbers (posted in the booth) were winners. Usually such things were notorious for being rigged, but this was evidently an honest game.
**The block parties were fundraisers for the local fire department. In addition to the punchboards (which disappeared first), there were rides and “spin the wheel” booths. (You’d put your money on a number and the wheel would spin. If your number came up, you won.) Eventually, people realized that all this was gambling and illegal, and they faded away in the mid-60s.
I won a snowboard by jumping into a garbage dumpster full of empty Surge bottles with my leg in a brace from my ACL surgery done three weeks prior. You had to find bottles with certain colored caps and inside would be a prize. They gave me extra time because of my condition. I was very proud.
I won about $20 at the racetrack once. And $160 at a casino. And a $200 TV set in a raffle at work. And a set of golf clubs (I gave those to my roommate-at-the-time) in some other raffle at work. And a $10 giftcard for Citgo gas. And a $20 gift certificate (waaaay back when they were still certificates and not cards) from a local mall. And 4 concert tickets once from a local radio station.
mid-60s? We still had stuff like that for the fire department in Chautauqua County in the 80-s
Re: the OP, I’ve never won anything in a publisher’s contest, but I am a net winner in the Florida Lotto. I had a system whereby I would spend $5 a week, and after my third week I hit 4 numbers and won around $100. Then I stopped while I was ahead
After TiVo released their 30-hour units several years ago they had a ton of 14-hour boxes to get rid of. They accepted essay submissions about why you wanted a TiVo in 500 words or less and chose 10 winners a day to get a free TiVo. I entered two and won both, so I think they were pretty much giving them to everyone instead of just 10 a day.
But instead of sending me two old 14-hour units, they sent a new 30-hour. Which sort of defeats the purpose… but I subscibed forever, so they win in the end.