I was working late into the night intent on finishing my research assignment due in next day for an important Board meeting. I double checked some details on the Internet when I got a Pop-Up.


“CONGRATULATIONS – You have won a prize! Click below.” It said in bright colours.


Maybe because I was tired and in need of distraction, maybe because I’m just stupid … but without hesitation I clicked my mouse where advised.


The next screen gave me $10 online to play poker.


“Yeh right …” I thought, “I don’t know the first thing about poker. Anyway, if this computer is online whoever is on the other side can easily ‘read’ my cards …”


So more out of disdain than anything else I put the whole $10 and clicked for some cards.


I can’t recall exactly what happened next, the screen said something “Flush” and my $10 turned to $50.


I put down my cup of coffee and smiled wryly. “Beginner’s luck! No doubt.”


I put down $10 and lost them. Then another and yet another.


“This game is addictive, I must say … here’s my last $10 then back to work.”


To my surprise my last $10 was greeted with a fanfare and a flashing $500 in bright red.


“Wow … what happened there … is this thing for real?” I gasped as I dropped hot coffee on my lap.


I clicked play again and the flashing sign turned to a question.


“Double or quit?” asked the computer.


It was getting rather late and I really had to finish my assignment. So I clicked OK and waited until the cards were dealt one at a time, and the familiar prompt to move on. I clicked again and then jumped out of my seat at the louder fanfare and fireworks display which lit up the screen.


“You have won $1000” flashed the big letters in bright red.


“This must be a joke” I thought to myself. “It’s not for real …”


I clicked the mouse again …


“One last chance – one card – highest wins!” challenged the computer.


I clicked and got the 4 of Hearts.


“Aha … so that’s their trick. Now I lose the lot!”


The computer placed a card slowly on the screen and then turned it over.


The 2 of Diamond.


“You have won $5000 !!! Enter your details below to receive a check.”


My heart pounded …My hands trembled … This isn’t really happening …


I started writing my name …


“BANG” popped my speakers.


“APRIL FOOL” flashed the screen.




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