Dingy old Bluebird Liquor in Hawthorne is off the hook right now. It's hosting the week-long block party of the century: A three-hour line of superstitious Angelenos looking to tap the growing Mega Millions jackpot.
The prize is at $640 million -- the biggest ever.
And as long as they're being unreasonable, these thousands of lottery hopefuls are all figuring they should probably go to the same liquor store to buy their tickets...
... because multiple people have won there before. (We're not sure exactly how many -- the phone line at Bluebird has been busy all morning -- but urban legend makes the store's winning-ticket ratio out to be, like, 1 in 10.)
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The line apparently started forming last Friday, when the pot was at $290 million.
But that was nothing. Now that it has almost doubled to a record-breaking high, people have even begun to camp out overnight, according to KNX news radio. And trust us -- it's not a fun part of town for a sleepover.
Fact: if you win tomorrow's $540 Million #MEGAMillions jackpot, you'll have WAY more money than Lady Gaga.
— California Lottery (@calottery) March 29, 2012
The line to buy tickets at Bluebird Liquor in Hawthorne, Calif., stretched a half block down Hawthorne Boulevard and around a side street for another half block. Some, such as Zulodius Morgan, waited in line for three hours to purchase tickets at the store, which has a reputation for being lucky for lottery players. Morgan, who has won close to $400 from past tickets, was in line at 8:30 a.m.
Hawthorne resident Vianca Zaragoza bought tickets Wednesday with family members and was back purchasing 65 for a 10-person office pool at a local clothing company. She had already been waiting two hours. "It's a hot store, I guess," said Zaragoza, 24.
This, despite the fact that line-folk have a better shot of getting their leg chomped off by a shark than drawing the lucky numbers. (And despite the fact that Bluebird is only turning up so many winners because so many more tickets are being purchased at that location.)
But at least they're stoking the dysmal Hawthorne economy while they're at it: KNX reports that Bluebird's potato-chip sales are at an all-time high. Some comfort food, perhaps, for the inevitable dashing of dreams this evening?
All right. Time for some Instagrams.