Written by, Me.
Competitive Scratching Presents, “Itching Their Hearts Out.”
To promote the release of “The Avengers,” the Idaho Lottery, held a scratcher competition attracting “the best,” of Boise. Attendees included but were not limited to, the unshaven, the tattered, the elderly, the fully costumed Tony Stark, a few normal people, an obese Captain America and three Boise State students—sophomores, Michael Ewing, Tim Scott, Mark Wilkstrom and junior, Joseph Parra.
About thirty people gathered in the ExxonMobile at W. Franklin Rd. & W. Franklin Rd. on May 3, 2012. Here the attendees competed in a “scratch off”—where two competitors raced against each other in a scratch off, of the values and winning numbers on multiple “Avengers,” scratch-card.
The tournament was held at a gas station including staff, lack of seating and free hamburger samples. People stood around and shared conversations while purchasing, scratch-cards and affiliated materials. To determine the ordering of players, each person was given a timed practiced round. David Workman, the Idaho Lottery Information Specialist, organized these attendees by speed—fastest in the front and slowest in the back.
Our Boise State students were somewhere in the middle of the pack. Ewing, studying marketing, completed his scratch-card in the practice round in less than eight seconds, whereas Scott, studying chemistry, finished his practice sheet in seven, leaving Parra, third of the group, completing his preliminary in eight. Attendees at the end of their line; completed theirs in 12- 15seconds.
Elimination rounds proceeded as the fastest scratch-card competitor versed the slowest scratch-card competitor. Each player scratched as if there were a gun to their head or had a chance of winning 300 more scratchers. The crowds cheered, disputed victories and stood eagerly.
There were upsets of course; some of the slower competitors did beat the faster. Some, such as Parra, blame this on completive sandbagging. According to one of the Boise State students, one lady dropped eight seconds between heats, as if she strategically lost the first round. All but one of the Boise State students—Parra, studying political science, Wilkstrom and Ewing—lost their competitive heats, leaving them a dollar down in terms of gambling.
Scott however won his first round but lost the second to Kallie Synder. “Did you see that lady?! We started and then it was like, Boom! Done” Scott said.
For the most part; the crowd was cheery, supportive and hopeful of winning more “Avengers,” scratch-cards. Approximately one and three cards have the possibility of winning a prize. These prizes vary from 1 and, two top earning prizes of, five thousand dollars. But those win one and every 386,000 where as there being an 11 percent chance of winning a two dollar prize.
There was one final winner, the lady from Caldwell—Synder. Defeating multiple opponents, Synder won 300 “Avengers,” scratch-cards. She did walk away with another prize, being the “fastest scratcher in Boise, Idaho.”
-Thanks again for reading, Bryce Dunham-Zemberi