Chuckling, I brought out money from my pocket to buy the ticket. This was life as it should be led and I was thoroughly enjoying it.
This week, I made a conscious decision to rebel at all of the morality that I had been taught from childhood- everything; and I was doing it so excessively, the excess in itself would likely be a sin.
What triggered this decision is not very clear to me, but what matters is it happened and I began to wonder how a life of sin –sin according to Christianity- was like. I knew what they said about this kind of life- that it only led to destruction, but I did not care, I delved into it anyway.
So on Monday night, I had gone to the street side, rented a prostitute, took her to my hostel, screwed her brains out through the night, and had what was unarguably the most beautiful night of my life.
On Tuesday, I had taken slightly more than a quarter of my school fees, gone to the most popular bar on campus with some new friends, and drank myself to a stupor.
Today, Wednesday, I was at the small stall just around the corner from my hall of residence, about to gamble at the lottery. I paid the money for the ticket –N50- and choose the numbers needed to play, and filled out my contact details.
I knew the bible well enough that in a moment of ironic choice, I remembered what Proverbs 14: 12 said and immediately chose 20, 14 and 12 as my numbers. Proverbs was the 20th book of the canonical bible. And then I left with the ticket slipped into my pocket.
I had stopped attending lectures over the week and so from the stall, I went straight to a night club, only stopping briefly at an ATM to withdraw another quarter of my tuition, waited in the bar while nursing a drink till evening came and the club opened properly.
I staggered home drunk again that night and slept in my clothes, and my vomit.
Thursday and Friday too ended up with me drunk after perpetuating various vices during the day from cigarette and marijuana smoking to sleeping with a friend’s girlfriend and so on. I could barely keep count of my sins anymore!
I woke up late on the afternoon of Saturday, with a migraine…and the head-splitting scream of my phone.
Angrily grabbing the phone from where it sat on my nightstand, I picked the call, ready to rain vitriolic on whoever was disturbing me.
“Who is this?” I shouted at the mouthpiece
“Hello.” Came a calm, feminine voice.
“Yes, what do you want?” I asked impatiently
“Can I speak to Mr. Oluseyi Johnson?”
“Ehn, ehn…this is me, what do you want.”
“Mr. Johnson, did you in the past week paly the Kalo-Kalo Lottery?”
This questioning was getting annoying.
“Who are you and how does that concern you?” I tersely returned, reflecting my dark mood.
“Sir, this is the Kalo-Kalo Lottery Plc.’s winnings confirmation desk, sir and we would want you to confirm your played numbers.”
I frowned. This could be fraudsters pranking me either to get my details or to rope me in a fraudulent win.
“Just a minute.”
I patted the pockets of my jeans trouser which I had been wearing for the past few days until I felt the rumpled mass of the ticket in one of them.
I brought it out and looked at the number that was stated as the confirmatory desk phone line and compared it to the number calling me. They were the same.
“Yes,” I replied, “my played numbers are 20, 14 and 12.”
“Can you repeat that again?”
Was she deaf? I wondered.
“My played numbers are 20, 14 and 12”
There was a long pause, then:
“Congratulations Sir, you have won N100 million in the Kalo-kalo tricky triple play, please hold on carefully to your ticket as one of our agents will contact you later today on how to redeem your prize; once again congratulations and Goodbye.”
The line went dead.
I replaced the phone on the stand and dropped back down to the bed with a wide smile on my face.
How about that for the wages of sin, I thought…and laughed out loud, while still alone in my room.