|Gambling addiction experts worry that the strategy used by the couple who won two jackpots totalling over $17 million last week will inadvertently encourage others to bet compulsively.|
Angelo and Maria Gallina bought 20 lottery tickets a day, every day, since the state lottery rolled out its `Dream a Little Dream' campaign in the 80s.
The Belmont couple estimate that they spend about $600 a month on the state's two high-profile games, SuperLotto Plus and Fantasy Five. Last month, they bought tickets for the Nov. 20 draw and struck gold on both. On Wednesday, they claimed their winnings: $6.6 million after taxes.
Experts warn that the Gallinas' seemingly successful strategy -- bet often, bet a lot -- might encourage others, especially those already prone to compulsive behavior.
`Most people who play the lottery realize everyone plays at a different level,' said Vincent Montaine, a lottery spokesman. `People in different income brackets will regulate their own spending.'
Some signs of problem gambling to look for are:
• Spending more money than you have.
• Hiding tickets from family for fear of revealing how much is being spent.