That’s The Ticket

The date is January 28, 1896, a frigid Tuesday in the small English village of Paddock Wood. Walter Arnold is feeling frisky, so he decides to take his Benz for a spin.

Normally, Walter is a law abiding citizen, but today, he’s got the need for speed. As he rounds the corner into a straightaway, he guns it. 

Pedal to the metal, he’s pushing his new “horseless carriage” to the max. The wind whips through his hair as he zips past the storefronts on High Street, the main drag in his town. 

Then he hears it…the piercing blast of a police whistle coming up fast from behind. His heart drops into his stomach. He’s doing four times the speed limit. They’ll put him behind bars for sure. 

As he slows to a halt the cop pulls up beside him. Walter Arnold is about to become the first person in history to receive a speeding ticket. How fast was too fast? He was going eight miles per hour in a two mile per hour zone. The cop chased him down on a bicycle. 

To put speeding at 8 MPH in perspective, Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt holds the world record for running 27.5 MPH in the 100 meter dash in 2009. 

Now that you know about the FIRST speeding ticket, what about the MOST EXPENSIVE ticket? Here’s a hint – it has nothing to do with breaking the law.

“Buy the ticket, take the ride.” Hunter S. Thompson

People love live entertainment and will sometimes pay a hefty price for a once in a lifetime experience. In the sports arena, some events have fetched astronomical ticket prices.

Like the 2017 NBA Finals when the Cleveland Cavaliers took on the Golden State Warriors. Fans paid as much as $133,000 for a single ticket. 

The same year Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor went toe to toe in the ring. Ticket prices for this epic fight soared up to $157,770. 

An intense NBA rivalry has been the Lakers and Celtics. When the two teams battled it out in the 2010 NBA Finals, tickets cost as much as $167,146. 

In 2015, the boxing match between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao was billed as the Fight of the Century. Some tickets cost over $200,000.

Boxing and basketball don’t hold a candle to football when it comes to ticket prices. Of the ten most-viewed shows in television history, nine of them were Super Bowl games. 

When the Baltimore Ravens faced off against the San Francisco 49ers in the 2013 Super Bowl, some tickets fetched prices of over $300,000!

However, none of these events come close to the prices paid to attend the 2016 World Series between the Chicago Cubs and the Cleveland Indians. As GQ Magazine reported: “It took 71 years for the Chicago Cubs to break the Curse of the Billy Goat and win a World Series. Tickets for the best seats in the house went for up to $1.54 million!”

If paying exorbitant prices for tickets isn’t your thing, how about tickets that pay you instead? I’m not referring to the golden tickets found in Willy Wonka chocolate bars. I’m talking about those elusive winning lottery tickets.

How about this for a mega money ticket winner? On Oct. 23, 2018 one lucky soul from South Carolina cashed in a Mega Millions ticket for $1.537 billion! To date it’s the highest lottery payout in history. To use the words of Lennon and McCartney: That winner definitely had “a ticket to ride.”

So when you’re celebrating Turkey Day, mesmerize your guests with these tidbits of trivia…the first speeding ticket in history, the most expensive sports tickets sold, and the highest lottery ticket payout. 

As Humphrey Bogart once said, “Yeah, that’s the ticket!” 

Happy Thanksgiving.