Opinion | Off the Cuff

Thankfully, the world did not end...

Throughout the history of the human race, there have been oracles who foretell what will happen to us and many things have come true

  • By Mahmood Saberi, Senior Reporter
  • Published: 20:00 January 1, 2013
  • Gulf News

This year, I have planned to become rich. Well, not obscenely rich like some people who order take-away from another country, but reasonably well-off.

Somebody said 2013 is going to be a good year, so I persuaded a group of guys in my office to jointly purchase a raffle ticket, which was giving a really sweet pay off — a million dollars!

Actually it was the astrologer who said that this year was going to be a great one for me, financially. She, however, said I should keep a tab on my expenses and keep away from stock market speculation.

She further broke down the numbers and noted that 13 in 2013 is auspicious and heralds new beginnings.

It didn’t take much to persuade my co-workers to pitch in for the raffle ticket as a million dollars goes a long way today, or so I thought.

Forward planning is always better and I looked up a website on what we could do with a million dollars. Unfortunately, it was the wrong website. It had pictures of nine items which it said I could buy with a million dollars.

The first picture was of a home theatre. “A luxurious home without opulent decor is like a cake without an icing,” it said. And a classy decor requires this advanced home theatre, said the website. It looked fabulous in the picture. On the off-white wall was mounted this huge screen. Everything in the room was white in colour, even the furniture.

The home theatre has a 36D universal player, Telos mono amplifier and other advanced features. “It guarantees high quality sound that makes it worth a million dollars,” it said.

There were other things that cost a million dollars like this classy-looking laptop with a stunning diamond power button, and a bathtub made from a single piece of rock crystal found in the Amazonian rain forest.

I quickly realised that it’s very easy to spend a million dollars. Anyway, all that money wouldn’t be mine alone as our group would be sharing the grand prize. The individual amount we would get would be $200,000 (Dh735,600), which was not bad. I could buy the motorbike I always wanted!

Just to make sure we win, I followed through what the astrologer said and went deeper into the numerological aspect of luck. I made sure we bought the ticket with a number 13 in it. It was bought on the 13th day of the month and at 1pm (1300 hours!) and the ticket series was 137.

The stage was set for riches and all we had to do now was to wait.

Some people think that all this numerology and astrology business is just hocus-pocus and one cannot really predict what the future holds for us. However, throughout the history of the human race, there have been oracles who foretell what will happen to us and many things have come true.

While I was arguing with some of my sceptical friends who believe that the only way to make money is to invest in property and ‘flip’ it, news came that the world was going to end.

Life can be so unfair sometimes, I told myself, as December 21 was now supposed to be cut-off time and it was time for all of us to pack our bags, so to speak.

The silly Mayans for some reason did not print their calendars beyond December 21 and some intelligent people said that meant that there would be an apocalypse.

While buying flashlights, making sandwiches, filling up my car tank and checking out the escape route for the last day, I wondered whether to give my winnings to charity, when the results of the raffle were announced.

We lost. Anyway, we are all still here. Happy New Year!

Gulf News
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