An Elmira, New York, man says it is bad enough that a recently purchased scratch-off lottery ticket was a loser, it didn’t have to insult him too.
“Unfortunately it says 'you Elmira trash' on it,” Nick Lynough, 22, told WETV News in a recent interview (shown below).
Lynough said he bought the ticket, featuring the state’s new “Wheel of Fortune” game, at a local bar. The ticket requires the player to scratch off blocks, to reveal a word, in a Person, Place and Thing category. The three words revealed on Lynough’s ticket delivered the insulting message to the Elmira resident.
He said he couldn’t believe it.
“Well when I looked at it, I thought it was a fake ticket,” he said. “Most of my friends used to play some of those old fake ticket tricks on me and that's what I first thought it was. Unfortunately it was a loser and … I was offended by it.”
It seems the bar’s owner couldn’t believe it either. She took the ticket to the Chemung County Sheriff's Office.
“She thought there was something fraudulent," Sheriff Christopher Moss told The Star-Gazette.
“It doesn't look like the ticket's been tampered with at all,” he said. “Once we found it wasn't fraudulent, it's not really a law enforcement matter.”
Seeking comment, The Star-Gazette secured a written statement from the state’s gaming commission.
“The New York Gaming Commission has confirmed that the unfortunate arrangement of words on this individual ticket was completely random, coincidental and — most importantly — unintentional,” the statement read.
“As soon as the ticket was brought to our attention, we immediately contacted the ticket printing vendor (IGT) to remove the word 'trash' from being a possible result for any future game. We apologize to anyone who was offended by this unfortunate result,” the statement continued.
What are the odds of those three words appearing, in succession, on a ticket? According to the commission’s own statement they are 1 in 900 million.
Lynough told The Star-Gazette he doesn’t believe it was an accident.
“I personally don't think it was random,” he said. “If it was random, it would have showed up somewhere else. It wouldn't have shown up in Elmira.”
Photo Credit: Provided photo via The Star-Gazette