Singapore Pools Making Life Difficult For Poor Old Folks To Claim Their Prizes


By: B Goode

NB: Ok maybe the title is a little bit misleading but if you can’t check whether your ticket has got the winning numbers or not….

So I was queueing up for toto this afternoon because the prize had snowballed to more than $4 million. Unlike someone who could depend on donations from some obscure Arab sheikhs to become a billionaire, I had to depend on winning the lottery to become a mere millionaire. And I am no longer young or else I could sell my bac…..nevermind.

Anyway, there was this frail old lady with a walking stick (no I am not exaggerating ) in front of me. When it was her turn, she asked the counter girl for a printout of past draws’ results. The counter girl told her that they no longer issue any result printouts. The frail old lady with a walking stick with tears rolling down her wrinkled cheeks (ok I made that one up) asked the counter girl how could she check on her results then?

The counter girl pointed to the self-service kiosk and asked the frail old lady with a walking stick with a pair of eyeglasses as thick as my forearm to check the results from the machine.

Seriously? How could a company with a multi-billion dollar annual turnover thanks to their ill-gotten gains from gambling that according to all religions would cause them to burn in hell deprive frail old folks from a little enjoyment in their twilight years?

The official bullshit was to care for the environment. What have a few pieces of printed paper got to do with caring for the environment? The paper is already there. Meaning the trees are already dead. And if the Singapore Pools are truly sincere in wanting to save the trees, why not cut down on the use of paper altogether? Why not just digitize or virtualise or whatever the term is (computerise!), the whole process? Have the tickets ordered online. Oh yes that’s right they can’t because some folks do not know how to operate the computers and thus Singapore pools will lose their precious dollars.

So the truth is that it is all about cost savings. A multi-billion dollar gambling company saving a few dollars at the expense of making frail old folks happy. You guys will get cancer, mark my words.

So if frail old folks couldn’t check their results against printed result slips, what would the alternatives be? Let’s discuss:

  • Check on the website, facebook, twitter and the kiosk.

So they expect old folks to use the computers? Old folks are like my grandma. They are terrified of modern machines. Why do you think you see a lot of old folks queueing at POSBank branches to withdraw cash? Because they don’t trust the ATMs. Not all old folks are like Hillary Clinton who is computer savvy. She is so savvy that she operates her own private e-mail server.

  • Buy newspapers

Old folks are very thrifty. They will not spend a few cents on a newspaper just to check on lottery results. And they don’t buy newspapers for the news because they get all the news from their hairstylists and barbers.

  • Get their friends to check for them

Their friends, if they are still alive, will be just like them. So see pt 1.

  • Get their younger family members to check for them

Old folks will not want to bother family members for something as trivial as lottery results. And chances are, their family members may not even know that their affable, lovable grandma is actually a big time hustler.

  • Ask the counter girl to check from the ticket machine

And so they are left with the last alternative which I actually offered to the frail old lady with the walking stick. But to my horror, she took out a stack of about fifty tickets, maybe more, and gave to the counter girl. And so I had to wait in line impatiently for about 30 minutes until she had completed checking all the tickets.

I truly deserved it.

Me and my big mouth.

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