Jack in the Box heiress blows $1 billion gambling over 9 years.

gamblingcatI can admit that the main reason I’m not fabulously wealthy is because in many ways I’m a bit of a screw up. Occasionally this realization makes me a little sad, but the next time it does I can comfort myself with the knowledge that I’m not this much of a screw up:

San Diego ex-mayor used charity funds to cover gambling debts – latimes.com.

SAN DIEGO — She married a fabulously wealthy man decades her elder, and became the first female mayor of San Diego. But when Maureen O’Connor left public life, she spent countless hours seated in front of video-poker machines.

Over a nine-year period, she wagered an estimated $1 billion, including millions from a charity set up by her late husband, who founded Jack in the Box.

That was the portrait that emerged in court Thursday as the frail former mayor tearfully acknowledged she skimmed more than $2 million from a charity founded by her late husband, Robert O. Peterson.

When my father-in-law took me gambling for the first time last year we went with a budget of $300 and I had a hard time with the knowledge that we were risking $300*. I can’t begin to fathom coming anywhere close to wagering a billion dollars.

She obviously has a gambling addiction problem, but it’s still hard to conceive how should get let herself get to the point of blowing her fortune and then stealing from her late husband’s charity without ever once thinking that maybe she might have a problem she needs help with.

I don’t mean to criticize or condemn this lady over this. I’m only writing about it because it so boggles my mind to even think about that writing it down is the only way I can deal with it. There are so many other things I’d be doing if I had that kind of money at my disposal and I probably still wouldn’t come close to ever spending it all.

* We left the casino with $50 more than what we walked in with. Which was enough to convince me I shouldn’t press my luck by ever going again.