Thursday, 21 June 2012

People who refuse prize money

I am such a non-gambler that I can't comprehend the mentality of a gambler at all.  I got ten $1 scratchie tickets for my birthday.  I read the details of how to win but there were no instructions.  Each card had a noughts and crosses grid and you could win by getting three of the same number in a row, column or diagonal.  I assumed you had to choose which row, column or diagonal to reveal but the girl at the newsagent said you scratch the card until you can see everything including the barcode then you use the machine to check if you've won.

Doesn't that take away the mystery of wondering if a different choice would have revealed three of a kind?  It means you don't have to be careful not to scratch too many panels and you don't have to figure out if you've won because a machine can do it for you. In fact, you could probably get away with ONLY scratching the barcode.

I couldn't see any matches on 7 of the tickets and the machine confirmed I was 'NOT A WINNER' seven times.  Luckily, I didn't take it personally.  It does sound better than 'LOSER' but it doesn't fill me with optimism to be told I'm not a winner. 

1 of the remaining 3 tickets earned me a free $1 ticket.  I'd just scratched my way through 10 tickets so it wasn't a great prize.  My fingers were a bit sore from gripping the coin and my arms were hurting because they are weak and pathetic and can hardly even hold a hair brush to brush my hair.  I'm convinced that this ridiculous muscle weakness has something to do with my fatigue but what would I know?

1 of the remaining 2 tickets could be exchanged for $2 and the final ticket was a winner of...$2.  The newsagent girl confirmed this by saying "four dollars".  I have to admit that I was slightly excited because I'm terrible at maths yet I managed to do this equation without a calculator.  I looked at the girl, she looked at me, I looked at her.

Ooh, I haven't gone off on enough tangents lately but that reminds me of a song I like.  It is a great one for hiking or while sitting around a campfire. 

The Bear with Groovy Shoes

Note: Each verse is sung by the leader (then echoed by the group) then the whole verse is repeated by everyone.

The other day (the other day)
I met a bear (I met a bear)
With groovy shoes (with groovy shoes)
A smashing pair (a smashing pair)

The other day I met a bear
With groovy shoes: A smashing pair

 [This isn't part of the song but I just realised how much easier it is to stir a small amount of boiling water with coffee and sugar then add the rest of the boiling water and some milk.  Why have I been waiting until the cup is full to the brim before I try to stir it?  I will probably forget this discovery and write about it next time I discover.]

I looked at him (I looked at him)
He looked at me (He looked at me)
I smiled at him (I smiled at him)
He smiled at me (He smiled at me)

I looked at him, he looked at me.
I smiled at him, he smiled at me.

He said to me (he said to me)
"Why don't you run? ("Why don't you run?)
I see you have (I see you have)
Not got a gun." (not got a gun.")

He said to me "Why don't you run?
I see you have not got a gun."

And so I ran (and so I ran)
Right out of there (right out of there)
But right behind (but right behind)
Me was that bear (me was that bear)

And so I ran right out of there
But right behind me was that bear.

In front of me (in front of me)
There was a tree (there was a tree)
A great big tree (a great big tree)
In front of me (in front of me)

In front of me there was a tree:
A great big tree in front of me.

And so I jumped (and so I jumped)
Into the air (into the air)
But I missed that branch (but I missed that branch)
Away up there (away up there)

And so I jumped into the air
But I missed that branch away up there.

Now don't you fret (now don't you fret)
Now don't you frown (now don't you frown)
'Cos I caught that branch ('cos I caught that branch)
On the way back down (on the way back down)

Now don't you fret, now don't you frown
'Cos I caught that branch on the way back down.

So now I sit (so now I sit)
Up the great big tree (up the great big tree)
And the great big bear (and the great big bear)
Looks up at me (looks up at me)

So now I sit up the great big tree
And the great big bear looks up at me.

The moral of (the moral of)
This story is (this story is)
Don't talk to bears | with | groo-oo-vy shoes.

Continued from above...
The girl repeated "four dollars" and I felt like she was asking me to pay HER instead of the other way round.  More blank staring ensued.  She then asked "Do you want the money?".  What do you mean 'Do I want the money?'  It's MY money!  I just won the money as a prize.  I'm not giving it to YOU.  Why WOULDN'T I want the money?  Do people hand over winning tickets then choose NOT to accept their prize?  What sort of person, having won money, REFUSES the money?  A gambler, that's who.

It was like I was the only person to ever contemplate NOT buying scratchie tickets with my prize money.  The girl looked defeated while handing over my money; as if she wasn't going to get paid that week because she had failed to adequately promote gambling.

If you've been following closely, or if you scroll up and re-read because some idiot went off on tangents from tangents, then you will know that I still had 1 scratchie ticket left.  Did I win $20,000?  Tune in after the break to find out.

It was a short break.  No, I did not win $20,000 but I did win.....another free $1 ticket!!!  Ooh, the ecstasy.

I am in no way ungrateful for the birthday presents bestowed on me by my dear, wonderful friend but by now I was sick of scratchie tickets and wanted to go home.  My friend actually gave me heaps of amazing birthday presents, the scratchies being the ONLY thing I didn't adore.  I was overjoyed with the other gifts and even cried a bit because they were so beautiful.  I wanted to give her a huge hug to thank her for her thoughtfulness but she was elbow deep in about 50 kilos of mince meat and was having way too much fun pounding it with her fists.  Oh, the jokes we made.

So, what did I gain from my second free $1 ticket?  I was lucky enough to win ANOTHER free $1 ticket.  Was this a trick to see if I would be SO OBSESSIVE that I kept playing until I'd scratched ALL the tickets?  I didn't have to scratch any of them but I did.  I got wise to the little test though, so I threw the last scratchie in the bin, because I don't need to complete everything.  No, I'm just kidding.  I'm coming up with this rubbish as I write.  I won $6 on the last scratchie.

The other girl working in the newsagent served me this time.  "Six dollars.  Do you want the money or the scratchie tickets?"  GIVE ME THE MONEY! 

I assume that my friend spent $10 on the ten $1 scratchie tickets.  Thirteen scratchie tickets and a lot of icky scratched off scratchie residue later and I had "won" $10.  That's probably seen as a good result.  Hmmm.  I am still convinced that I am "winning" more by not gambling.  I tried to argue that once and apparently it's not winning if you don't enter the competetion.  I think it's not winning if your expenditure equals or exceeds your income or if you pay money and receive no goods or services in return.

It was a lovely thought to give me a chance at becoming rich but I think I'd have to say that I'm anti-gambling. 

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