The Day We Won the Mercedes

It started out like any other day; it was August 29, 1998, and my wife Stine and I spent the day running errands around Hollywood, and taking a bike ride down to Manhattan Beach. That night we went out to dinner. When we came home, our answering machine was beeping. Usually it was someone from the office for one reason or another, but that night it was different. You can listen to it here.

The good news that after five years, we finally won the Mercedes-Benz Club of America's new car auction. In our case, the car we chose to try and win was the C280. Each member could buy up to ten tickets for each prize offered, and each year we bought our ten for the C280, at a cost of $25 each.

The odds - For each car, the odds were no longer than 3000 to 1, as for every 3000 tickets sold, they would ante up another car and the count to 3000 would begin again. Not terrific odds, but a sure thing compared to the lotto!!! For the C280, they sold 4,510 tickets, and because it was for two cars, the final odds were 1 in 2,255. So, since I bought ten tickets, it lowered the chances to 222.5, and because I did that each year for five years, it was lowered to approximately 45 - slightly worse than a spin at the roulette wheel.

As you can see from the prior page, we currently do not own a C280. After considering all the options, we decided to take the cash payment in lieu of the car, as we already had two perfectly good Mercedes-Benzes.

Since the auction, we have not bought any more raffle tickets; we figured that capturing lightning in a bottle AGAIN just isn't going to happen!

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