The greatest office pool

With all due respect to March Madness, Fantasy Baseball, and hockey pools everywhere I am going to enlighten you to the greatest office pool of all time.  Ladies and Gentlemen I introduce to you… “The Wine Pool.”

For each of the last two years I have participated in an office wine pool.  A pool which this year consists of 324 participants with the winner taking home an astounding 120 bottles of wine.   I am not at liberty to disclose where this pool takes place (it’s not my office) nor who runs it, but I can share with you the finer details so you too can perhaps start one of your own, making you a hero to your friends and colleagues alike.

Your ticket to entry in the pool is simple, you submit one bottle of wine per person which is valued at $25 or more. Entries are made in teams of 4-6 people so although names are drawn individually in a process of elimination, the team approach increases your chances of winning.  Most teams come to a pre determined agreement that if one person’s name is the last one standing the pot is shared amongst all the teammates. Therefore even if you have a 6 person team, if you collectively take top prize each team member goes home with 20 bottles of wine.  Not a bad haul.

The pool works by a process of elimination.  Names are drawn at random eliminating people from the pool.  The last person drawn becomes the grand prize winner.  With 324 participants this year 30 people are eliminated on day one, and another 14 every single business day for the following 21 days.  Draws are made in the morning and afternoon eliminating contestants.  So twice a day you scroll the e-mail to see if you and your teammates are continuing along to the next draw.  In addition to the grand prize winner, the final 3 people remaining get prizes with 3rd place taking 40 bottles and second place taking 70 bottles.  Finally weekly prizes are also awarded along the way giving some condolences to a few of those being eliminated.

So as you can see it’s a fairly elaborate pool, at least in numbers, but it’s fairly simple in concept.  Which leads me to why it is the best office pool… ever.  First off I’ll admit that if the LCBO offered gambling I would be in, here you are essentially buying a $25 lottery ticket with the chance to win 120 bottles of wine.  Secondly, thanks to the little pop-up box in Microsoft Outlook twice a day I get a little teaser where I click to find out if I or my teammates have been eliminated and if we were eliminated did we take home a prize.  The live elimination aspect creates more excitement and anticipation than I can echo in this post.  Because lets be honest most of us work desk jobs.  We pine for moments that break up our day.  What a better break than an email that outlines your standing in the quest to take home 120 bottles of quality wine.  I can’t think of anything.

This year I was eliminated on day one, but four of my teammates remain.  At both 10:00am this morning and 3:00 this afternoon I will get an email that creates anxiety and then a buddy in the row next to me will say “uh oh, here we go.” This will continue for the next three weeks.  The glory at stake is the opportunity to stock my wine cellar. The greatest office pool ever.

– Mark
Follow me on Twitter: @towineman

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