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rxwine
rxwine
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October 9th, 2013 at 2:04:27 PM permalink
I was looking for a birthday card for my sister in a Hallmark store and saw these things. So, I looked them up online. I wonder if this skirts the gambling laws in Florida, or even cross border laws? I'm doubting it's a good deal on odds. I'm still considering buying some for my nephew/neices, though I would hate for them to just get a dollar. I might buy 5 at once though which would probably give them a better chance of getting a high denomination. They were $10.98ea in the store

Quasimodo? Does that name ring a bell?
deedubbs
deedubbs
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October 9th, 2013 at 2:21:33 PM permalink
Quote: rxwine

I might buy 5 at once though which would probably give them a better chance of getting a high denomination.



I think that "probably" is generous. With such a big pool of bars and probably a very low probability of higher bills, I think that you are much closer to drawing with replacement than drawing without replacement, but the math guys here may correct me. Of course, that changes if they are advertising x non-$1 bills per case or if the odds are much more favorable than I'm envisioning.

That said, I know quite a bit about the hustles that go on with stuff like this. Including, but not limited to:

Triple beam scales
Dial calipers
Clever use of very strong flashlights and aluminum foil

Just to name a few. If it's not someone in the store, it can be used elsewhere in the chain of custody, the retailers, or people that make deals for first access with the retailers.

I'm going to predict that the number of high denomination units is low, but the number of those that actually hit the shelves is very, very low.
tringlomane
tringlomane
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October 9th, 2013 at 2:28:55 PM permalink
If the average value of the bill was more than $2, I'd be pleasantly surprised.
beachbumbabs
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beachbumbabs
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October 9th, 2013 at 2:38:20 PM permalink
rxwine,

I have to think this is like pull-tabs or scratch-offs, where the vast majority have the minimum value. That said, a clear glycerine soap, or even a creamy one if you want the amount to be mysterious, is an EXTREMELY easy thing to make, right in your kitchen; it would take you about 2 hours plus set-up time after cooking it to make your own in any mold or shape you wished, and you could make a dozen bars for less than 20.00 including molds and soap. You just heat up the raw soap material, pour it into molds, let it cool; the instructions will be on the package. They also have scents and/or colors to just add in as it heats. Wrap them in a piece of netting tied with a ribbon once they're cool. Why not individualize them to the recipients, get the stuff from the hobby shop nearest you, and put the money into the bars instead of these people's pockets? A really neat stocking stuffer for the kids.

Martha Stewart aka bbb
If the House lost every hand, they wouldn't deal the game.
Mission146
Mission146
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October 9th, 2013 at 2:41:08 PM permalink
Quote: rxwine

I was looking for a birthday card for my sister in a Hallmark store and saw these things. So, I looked them up online. I wonder if this skirts the gambling laws in Florida, or even cross border laws? I'm doubting it's a good deal on odds. I'm still considering buying some for my nephew/neices, though I would hate for them to just get a dollar. I might buy 5 at once though which would probably give them a better chance of getting a high denomination. They were $10.98ea in the store



Quote: rxwine

I was looking for a birthday card for my sister in a Hallmark store and saw these things. So, I looked them up online. I wonder if this skirts the gambling laws in Florida, or even cross border laws? I'm doubting it's a good deal on odds. I'm still considering buying some for my nephew/neices, though I would hate for them to just get a dollar. I might buy 5 at once though which would probably give them a better chance of getting a high denomination. They were $10.98ea in the store



The first thing that I would consider is that it clearly advertises that there are real $$ in every bar of soap, so the cost of one duck is effectively $9.98, with the potential to win an amount over that dollar ($4, $9, $19, $49) which affects that cost.

I suppose the first thing I would be inclined to do is to go on-line and see if this company (or a different company) has comparable duck-shaped bars of soap without the ability to win money and see how much those cost. The weight is on the package, so it shouldn't be too hard to find something comparable. I would then subtract the cost of a comparable non-cash-bearing duck soap from that $9.98 and anticipate a 50% ER on whatever remains after that.

Thus, if it were $9.98 and a different duck was $2.98, then the remainder would be $7.00, and I would anticipate an average return of about $3.50, not including the guaranteed dollar. How that would break down after that, with respect to distribution, I have no idea.

I believe this is not a violation of gambling laws because you are paying for the product, and they are just giving you something. It is not highly unusual to be able to buy a product and be entered into a cash drawing of some sort, just in this case, you are paid immediately if you win. You're not paying for the gamble, IOW, technically, you're paying for the soap...that could also be why there is at least $1.00 in every single one.
Vultures can't be choosers.
EvenBob
EvenBob
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October 9th, 2013 at 2:41:30 PM permalink
That's funny. In the series Deadwood, there's always
a guy in the street hawking soap with a 'prize inside',
and this was 1876. The prize was money. It was a
scam of course, as I imagine this is. Most if not all
the Deadwood soap had a penny in it and cost a
nickel to buy. There's was always a shill in the crowd
crying out that he found a dollar in his. Sure he did.
"It's not enough to succeed, your friends must fail." Gore Vidal
rxwine
rxwine
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October 9th, 2013 at 2:43:00 PM permalink
Hey, that's a good idea, thanks beachbumbabs. I am not craft oriented but I can probably manage that.
Quasimodo? Does that name ring a bell?
thecesspit
thecesspit
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October 9th, 2013 at 2:49:00 PM permalink
Quote: EvenBob

That's funny. In the series Deadwood, there's always
a guy in the street hawking soap with a 'prize inside',
and this was 1876. The prize was money. It was a
scam of course, as I imagine this is. Most if not all
the Deadwood soap had a penny in it and cost a
nickel to buy. There's was always a shill in the crowd
crying out that he found a dollar in his. Sure he did.



Exactly the TV series I was thinking about. Sure he found a dollar... he gives it back to the inside guy every night!
"Then you can admire the real gambler, who has neither eaten, slept, thought nor lived, he has so smarted under the scourge of his martingale, so suffered on the rack of his desire for a coup at trente-et-quarante" - Honore de Balzac, 1829
rxwine
rxwine
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October 9th, 2013 at 2:53:49 PM permalink
Heck, maybe I'll make my sister a fruit cake and pack it with silver dollars. You know what they say, "You can't have your cake and eat it too?" Literally.

Thanks, I'll be here all night. (or somewhere)
Quasimodo? Does that name ring a bell?
rdw4potus
rdw4potus
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October 9th, 2013 at 3:26:34 PM permalink
Quote: rxwine

Hey, that's a good idea, thanks beachbumbabs. I am not craft oriented but I can probably manage that.



If you've ever made Jello molds (or, really, even jello shots), you're good-to-go. You just really shouldn't eat the soap:-)
"So as the clock ticked and the day passed, opportunity met preparation, and luck happened." - Maurice Clarett

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