Greeson: Mega-interest in Mega Millions, peddling a different look at bike stats, obit observation

A Mega Millions lottery play slip is seen in a local grocery store, Monday, July 25, 2022, in Des Moines, Iowa. Across the U.S., state lottery systems use that revenue to boost education, tourism, transportation and much more. Now that the giant Mega Millions lottery jackpot has ballooned to more than $1 billion, state officials are hoping increased national interest in securing the top prize will result in more funding for their own causes. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

So did you win the Mega Millions? If so, can I borrow a college tuition or two?

After no Tuesday winner, Friday night's drawing across more than a dozen states was for a jackpot north of $1 billion. Well, that's before Biden taxes, which means the winner will walk away about even. Kidding. Mostly.

Still, maybe the most apropos question is: Did you play the Mega Millions? And beyond that, because I fall in this group too, why do so many of us play the outrageously long odds only when it gets north of, say, $400 million or so? Are we truly suggesting that winning a humdrum $6 million on a $2 ticket is not worth our time?

Now, I understand the "group think" of ticket buying, if you know what I mean. There is no bigger FOMO - fear of missing out - than your office crew or your poker buddies all pitching in $10 and group-buying tickets. Because it's worth that $10 for the peace of mind that comes with silencing the "Oh my, if they win $800 million and I'm not in on it, I become the Pete Best of Mega Millions."

So there's that.

Peddling stats

So, the Bike Chattanooga program turned 10 earlier this week.

That's grand, I suppose. It also comes with news that the program is expanding. OK.

But we kind of need to grab the hand brakes on this being a home run, no?

So, if there have been 589,000 trips taken in the decade of the program, put the rubber to the road, if you will. A decade worth of days is 3,650 give or take a Leap Year or two. The city's program started with 300 bikes in 2012 and has 400 rental bikes in circulation today with a plan for more.

Details about additional bikes being added are sketchy, but if we average the two figures, over the 10 years of the program, that's 350 bikes over the decade. Which means there were roughly 1,277,500 bike seats available in the 10 years of the program.

That means while 589,000 "trips" on Bike Chattanooga frame is more than I expected to be honest, it's still only 46% usage. Again, that's more than my eyes tell when I pass almost-always full bike racks. And then details of how long, the duration or multiple usages were not available.

Regardless, if a restaurant or other business had 46% usage, on average, over 10 years, it begs the question if expansion is really the best play, no?

Obit observation

Ms. Irene Cobb Fogo died Monday. She was 103.

Yes, 103. I'm 51. She likely had grandkids my age.

Two things jump out when you see someone reaches triple digits. First is the time. Irene was born no later than 1919, depending on her birthday. In the terms of the summer pastime alone, she was around before the Chicago White Sox fixed the World Series and may have been walking when Babe Ruth was traded from Boston to the Yankees in 1920.

The second thing is how that time is spent.

She found professional success in a law office, teaching kindergarten and opening her own insurance office. Plus, she was able to raise a multigenerational family of three kids, six grandkids, 12 great-grandkids and eight more great-great-grandkids.

Not many of us will get 103 years like Irene did. But boy did she make the most of it.

Contact Jay Greeson at or 423-757-6273. Follow him on Twitter @jgreesontfp.

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photo Jay Greeson