The opening credits of this week's episode immediately caught my attention - Carol Kane is guest-starring! Oh, those lovely childhood days of listening to her shrill voice scratch at my ears from the confines of some syndicated Taxi re-runs. The episode also features 'Bud Cort', who the internet tells me is a successful character actor, but who I know only from his hilarious cameo on Arrested Development, replacing the star of 'Mister Reinhold's Courtroom'. I wonder what Carol's going to be up to this week? Whatever it is, it certainly involves lighting a lot of candles!
Actually, it's Bud lighting the candles - he's using them as part of a spell to try and rig the lottery! He's so sure that he's going to win that he calls the headmaster of the university where he works to gloat about his coming success and quit! Which seems a little presumptuous, but he explains that his years of teaching Algebra have left him with the ability to 'hear' what numbers are saying to him - which is the kind of thing you'd expect someone who'd, Pi-style, unlocked the numerical master code of the universe to say, as opposed to a guy who's exploiting magic to his own ends:
Yeah, that's a flying lottery ticket. So it's definitely magic, and not math, that's responsible for his coming riches. Although I can't imagine that there's going to be much money in the Jackpot - while the MC of the drawing referred to it as the state's first mega-jackpot, he also mentioned that five million people have bought tickets. If there are only six numbers on the ticket, however, aren't there only a million possible combinations? Won't Bud be sharing his win with at least five other people? Or more likely hundreds, given that he's selected a combination sure to be favoured by would-be-witches and self-identified goths all across the state.
Turns out the whole thing is moot - it turns out he didn't pick the right number after all. The winner was 666667! Yup, he was one number off, and is, as a result, out some TEN MILLION DOLLARS!
Seriously? There were only a million possible tickets. How could the prize possibly be ten million dollars? How much did these tickets cost?