For 20 Minutes, Eatery Staff Thought They Won $900M

Dishwasher quit, valet told man to get his own car
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 13, 2016 9:45 AM CST
Updated Jan 14, 2016 2:00 AM CST

Bet it was hard to come down from this high: Workers at a New Jersey restaurant thought they'd hit the jackpot—literally—when they accidentally matched the numbers on their ticket for Saturday's $900 million Powerball draw with the winning numbers from last Wednesday's drawing. A video shows employees at Grissini Restaurant screaming and hugging after the numbers were read out, reports NBC New York. A dishwasher threw his apron on the floor and quit, and a parking attendant told a customer to go get his own car, per CBS New York and WABC. "It was a feeling of excitement, glory, the adrenaline—it was just an amazing feeling," a server says. "We can donate some money; change our lives; be happy."

Bartender Charles Poveromo, who organized the 42-person pool, says his friend texted him what he thought were Saturday's winning numbers, which Poveromo matched to the workers' ticket. When he called his wife to tell her the good news about 20 minutes later, she asked him to confirm the numbers online. "I got on the phone and I'm shaking," Poveromo says. The website had "a whole set of different numbers." Employees—including the dishwasher, who has returned to work—were heartbroken when they realized the mistake. They pooled their money for tickets for Wednesday's $1.586 billion drawing, but, alas, the three winning tickets were sold in Florida, California, and Tennessee. (Here are 10 awful things we're willing to do for money.)

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