Sunday, 23 November 2008

A humiliatingly awful score

I’ve sort of won a competition. The last time I can recall winning anything (apart from the very occasional £10 on the Lottery) was a bottle of something alcoholic in a raffle at an age when I was too young to drink – and that is a long, long time ago! I won a prize in Sara’s competition by being so bad I got a minus score - “Scriptor Senex deserves a prize, even though he lost, really lost, with a humiliatingly awful score. (Sorry, SS; no offense.)”

Even better than winning a prize was being described as “the lovely and talented Scriptor Senex, who had a score of -2½, but who clearly made the greatest effort to be amusing, and who should also be applauded for taking the greatest risk by offering the largest pile of details, however ridiculous.... However, because of extraordinary effort and bravery, I'm also going to award ten house points to Gryffindor, as it were. Therefore, dear, amusing Scriptor Senex, if you will also be so kind as to drop me an e-mail at the above-noted address, I shall be very pleased to send you a lesser but hopefully still fun Super Secret Runner Up Prize.”

Sara, from Massachusetts, " a happy, ordinary, middle-aged, suburban woman who paints odd pictures, gardens in a straw hat, lives with the love of her life, is owned by one cat and the ghosts of several others, and walks a little funny 'cause she has a fake leg. She started this website because there's more to life than what we lose, and we need to let each other know what's possible, even if it's only a happy, ordinary life. "

It took but a minute or two to make my entry in Sara’s competition and the reward has been considerable. I’m not talking about my Secret Runner-up Prize but about how much of a boost one gets when someone says nice things about you. In a world of so much pain and iniquity it is so pleasant to be reminded how many lovely people there are, right across the globe.

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