Quick cut back to the gas station: Qualls yelling at Hurley that someone won the lottery.
Back to the hatch-hole. Hurley goes off on Rose: "Let me tell you something, Rose. We were all fine before we had any potato chips! But now we've got these potato chips and everybody's going to want them. So Steve gets them, and Charlie's pissed -- but he's not pissed at Steve, he's pissed at me." You sure you don't mean Scott?
Back at the gas station, the clerk, with television camera lights in his face, looks across the parking lot, in the middle of the night, into the van at the guy sitting in the passenger seat, and apparently recognizes him and remembers that he was the one who played the winning numbers. And I'm sorry, but no. And stop sending me possible explanations, please, especially if they don't add up. Yes, the gas station gets a bonus for selling the winning ticket, but they get that whether a ticket is claimed or not. And don't bother telling me that the store would have checked the surveillance tapes at the time the winning ticket was sold. No lotto commission in the world would ever release any more information other than where the winning ticket was sold. You know why? Because it would be incredibly irresponsible, if not downright dangerous -- and it goes without saying, legally actionable -- for a lotto commission to identify or cause to be identified a person who is suddenly worth $156 million when as far as they know that person doesn't even know yet that he's won. How many con artists and criminals would potentially be on the lookout for Hurley or any lottery winner who hasn't redeemed his ticket? I also enjoyed the fact that all these news organizations waited until the middle of the night to do a story on the Kwik-E-Mart clerk with the amazing memory.
I suppose I shouldn't get too caught up in the implausibility of this particular scene on this show. But the implausibilities are starting to pile up. Anyway, the point of this scene is that the cameras and the reporters and the people swarm the van, while Hurley looks dismayed and Qualls looks hurt. And while that happens, all in slow motion, present-day Hurley blabbers thusly: "And I'm going to be in the middle of it. And then it's going to be: 'Well, what about us -- why didn't I get any potato chips? C'mon, help us out, Hurley. Why did you give Kate the shampoo? And why didn't I get the peanut butter?' Then, they'll get really mad and start asking: why does Hugo have everything -- why should he get to decide? Then they'll all hate me. I don't know what to do."