There are some prizes that are better not to win and I’m not talking about the first prize in 4D or Toto or the Big Sweep.
Rather, it’s those little prizes which, to enjoy, entails much co-ordination, time, effort and spending more money.
Take the 3-hour free use of a karaoke room at the National University of Singapore Society’s Suntec facility that I won some time in January from a lucky draw.
I thought myself rather lucky at that time, as I’d always wanted to use one of those rooms but had been too stingy (not knowing how much a room would cost per hour, so wasn’t inclined to splurge) and lazy to get together the requiste number of friends as that would entail much to-ing and fro-ing to arrive at a date and time to suit everyone.
But with that free voucher and a deadline of two months to consume, I found myself forced to organise a gathering last week: something I’m not fond of doing.
Calling friends for a meal yes, because worse comes to worst, I could eat with one other. Or we could always postpone the date!
Not when it’s something with a set deadline and entails a minimum number of participants! Not for a karaoke room, with an expiry date!
To my chagrin, apart from two enthusiastic respondents, the others invited hummed and hahhed. “It’s three weeks away”; “It’s week day, leh and have to work next day”; “Not sure if my bad back will be OK by then;” etc etc
In the end, two days be4 the event on March 9, I had three confirmed guests. Luckily I had booked a room for five to six, instead of one for 15 to 20 I was offered by the booking office and which I nearly accepted, tempted by the attraction of maxing out my prize. Thank goodness common sense prevailed.
Then a friend, KL, returned from Shanghai in the nick of time with dresses I asked him to get tailored for me. I asked him to come along with his companion, an invitation which he accepted.
So my quota of guests was filled. End of problems in enjoying my prize? No! On the day of the karaoke evening, those invited but had said no, suddenly had a change of heart! They could “join you” after all.
I had to decide between expanding the guest list or just say sorry, I’m afraid there isn’t room any more. Seriously speaking, what chance was there for anyone to have a go at the mike if there were 10 of us instead of just six?
As a result I could have miffed those who made up their minds at the last minute and were told that I had other guests.
Now isn’t that truly a winner’s curse?