It was not a nebulous idea originating in the faraway limitless tracts of the universe.
Three score years ago, $350,000 (equivalent to probably $7,000,000 today) was a gigantic bang for the buck – I bet no one will disagree with me.
That was the first prize for the Social and Welfare Services Lottery draws, which took place every 20 days – the elusive pot of gold at the end of the rainbow passionately pursued by ever-optimistic punters. Never mind if the majority never even struck any teapot or coffee pot. The lure seemed irresistible.
The first prize was later raised to $375,000 and progressively increased to RM1,000,000 by 1988. Well, by that time, I had already settled down in Singapore, and have lost track of its development.
Is this lottery is still alive in Malaysia now? What’s the trophy amount?
Before the advent of Sports Toto, Magnum 4D , etc, it seemed that dreams were limited in number to 1000. Of course that applied only to the folks with incurable gambling propensities coded into their DNA.
I recall that historical pink booklet, known as [千字图],or “Thousand Character Map”. It was revered like a religious book by die-hard punters. Inside were exactly 1000 pictograms, labelled 000 to 999. Each depicted a unique object (both animate and inanimate) or a situation.
Waking up from a dream, adherents would quickly grab that “sacred” book and search for the pictograms which best matched their dreams. Guess the next move? Bets would be placed with their favourite bookies for the three-digit numbers which the respective pictograms were assigned. It mattered not if no strikes were made. There was always the next dream.