Day Twenty-Five: Winning.
I rarely win in raffles.
Some people are born lucky. They are more likely to win in games of chance. Their names are often drawn, even for consolation prizes. I had a co-worker who was so lucky, it actually backfired on her: her name was drawn twice in an office raffle. Unfortunately, raffle rules state that employees can only submit one entry per person, so she was disqualified for both prizes.
Whenever I attend company parties, there will be that point during the eventual raffle when I’ll hold my breath waiting for the announcement of the winner, only to exhale in disappointed because, as usual, my name was not called.
That’s more than ten years of working and annual company parties, plus the occasional parties thrown by the account’s client or some other employee-benefit contest.
It’s the same outside of work, even when I was younger. During school fairs, in church parties, even in the occasional traveling perya. I would spend all my money playing the color game and lose all of it without really winning anything.
There was one particular time when I actually won a raffle that I do remember.
Day Twenty-Four: Losing.
During the Nineties, Battle of the Brains was one of the more popular game shows on local TV. It was a weekly quiz show where different schools would send a team of delegates to compete with each other, answering questions from various categories (Science, Arts, Current Events, etc). During sixth grade, I was sent to compete in the Elementary School competition of the show with two other classmates.
I’ve been in several inter-school quizzes before: Math Quiz Bees, Science Quiz Bees, Campus Journalism Meets. You can say I was the mental counterpart of school athletes. I was hopeless in sports and physical activities, but I was quite good in competitive quizzes. During grade school, I realized that it was an easy way to win high grades and exam exemptions from teachers. I still joined inter-school competitions in high school, but my more conservative high school teachers were not too impressed by it; my high school grades dipped because I was mostly a very lazy student.
Prior to the show, our team was put in a relatively intense training. Teachers sometimes pulled out from class so we can do mock quizzes and they timed us when answering various questions.
During the show proper, I remember being underwhelmed by the studio. It was much smaller than I expected from what is shown on television. It was grubbier and not as “high-tech” as how we thought it would be.
We lost. (This entry’s title was a giveaway, wasn’t it?)
We were second place, with a very close score with the winning school. Partly it was because of a True or False question that was initially answered incorrectly: I thought, because of only two options for an answer, answering incorrectly invalidates attempts to “steal” the points. The team that won was not above taking advantage of an answer that was practically given away.