While we wait breathlessly for the announcement of who actually won the Mega Millions lottery, there's plenty to keep us entertained. If it's not the terribly true tales of Lotto winners past or stories of people acting litigious and horrible while dividing up their winnings, there are weird stories like that of "The wacky Baltimore woman who claims to have one of three winning Mega Millions tickets [and] now says it’s hidden somewhere in the McDonald’s restaurant where she works."
The New York Post treats this story with a special touch of ridiculousness, which is as it should be, opening with "Let no gallon of special sauce go unturned!" This, of course, is the fast food-enthused follow-up to the story the Post broke earlier in the week, that Marlinde Wilson had come forward saying she had Maryland's winning Mega Millions ticket (meaning she'd take home approximately $105 million after taxes), and it was her winnings alone, even though she'd purchased tickets with a group of McDonald's coworkers, and even though she didn't actually produce the winning ticket at all. Her reason, now put forth in the papers, is that she put her ticket somewhere safe at the McDonald's where she works. Reasonable! But not in the safe. Somewhere safe. Per the Post's Amber Sutherland and Bob Fredericks:
“I left my ticket there, and it’s somewhere safe that only I know about,” she told The Post through a Creole-speaking translator.
The single mom of seven did say that the ticket — worth an after-tax lump-sum payout of $105 million — was not in the franchise’s safe with those she bought for the workplace pool.
Also reasonable: waiting for everyone to calm down until she can retrieve her winning ticket: 'The people [at McDonald’s] are too excited. I want their heads to cool down before I go back,' she said."
Her manager, however, says that Wilson didn't even return to the McDonald's after buying her ticket, and another employee says of Wilson, "She’s always been strange. She’s an attention seeker. She likes to have all the attention on herself.”
Meanwhile, Carole Everett, director of communications for the Maryland lottery, told ABCNews.com there is "no indication" that Wilson's story is true. Yet! Check your burgers carefully.