MAKE LUCK / by Chelsea Snow

My mom is a professional winner. Here is a list of things that I can remember off the top of my head (in no particular order) that she has won over the years: 

  • a Mini Cooper
  • a trip to Euro-Disney
  • a trip to Mexico (?)
  • a trip to Florida to see Pitbull (!)
  • so many other trips, so many other random concerts
  • a $10,000 shopping spree
  • a fancy refrigerator
  • two jet-skis (separately)
  • a big screen television (before they were a thing)
  • dozens of iPods and other small electronics
  • tons of cash prizes
  • a year's supply of Annie's macaroni and cheese
  • so.many.t-shirts.

When I was a kid, we would listen to whatever radio station was giving away a prize by being the Nth caller, or whatever station was giving away a key that might start a brand new car. She would pre-program the redial button to call the station on the phone and fax lines, often listening to two radio stations at once. She once handed me a ringing phone receiver allowing 12 year-old me to be the 104th caller, winning $104, from 104.3fm. 

I remember being sent to the library for research when a station was giving away a prize to someone who could answer geography trivia questions. When grocery stores were doing a giveaway, she would pocket entire stacks of entry forms and have all of us kids fill them out until our fingers cramped.

Yes, my mom was a winner, and she worked REALLY hard at it. When people would hear about her latest prize, they'd usually say something about luck: "oh, I never win anything--I'm not lucky" or "she is so lucky!" The truth is, that there was no luck involved. Winning contests is my mom's craft--requiring skill, effort, ingenuity and time. The lesson here: putting in that kind of work will almost always yield results.

There's no denying that random events (good and bad) happen all the time. And there are situations where people are in the right place at the right time, and again--good or bad things ensue. (Read Malcom Gladwell's The Outliers for more on that topic.) The thing I'm trying to get at here is that what the world might interpret as good luck is probably the result of a lot of hard fucking work. As with anything, if there's something you are needing or wanting, and the world doesn't seem to be handing it to you on a platter, make it yourself.

 Prints  here .

Prints here.