This is an opinion editorial by Konstantin Rabin, a finance and technology writer.
I am one of those who was fortunate enough to find out about Bitcoin more than a decade ago before it gained mainstream attention. Sadly, I am also one of the morons who saw this opportunity, didn’t think too much of it at first and let it fly by.
In this little story, I’d like to share the path that led me to pass on investing in bitcoin three different times before eventually giving in and becoming a HODLer. So, here are the key lessons I learned along this journey that are worth sharing with anyone who is still doubting BTC.
Given that I started my first full-time job in an online brokerage back in 2011, it should come as no surprise that I had a bunch of colleagues who were really into trading and super passionate about everything related to investments, technology and the progress of the financial world. It wasn’t long before I made a friend named Edgar. We shared some interests, predominantly gaming and our long-standing nicotine addictions. Even though we worked in different departments and rarely had to collaborate for our jobs, we would still ping each other whenever it was time to head out and smoke a ciggy, gleefully chatting about life, the universe and everything else, as we dosed on nicotine and fresh air.
One day, sometime during 2012, I popped through one of these “smoke?” messages to Edgar when I noticed that his Skype status was some sort of gibberish that looked like a cat had been walking over his keyboard.
It looked something like this: “1BvBMSEYstWetqTFn5Au4m4GFg7xJaNVN2.”
During our smoke session, I asked him, “Was it a cat, or did your account get hacked?” He denied both of these possibilities and then went into a long and complicated explanation about Bitcoin addresses and blockchains.
Edgar passionately explained what the whole Bitcoin thing is all about, and his excitement instantly got me extremely interested in the topic. Being in the investment industry, I was well aware of many online scams and fake dubious products such as e-gold, that seemed, at least at the surface level, to all be similar. But, the more he told me about it, the more Bitcoin seemed like it might be much more than just some fly-by-night scheme; at the very least, it was worth a gamble.
My biggest problem was that 2012 was probably my worst year on record when it came to financial health, and while 3,730,218 public keys already existed on the Bitcoin network by then, I certainly didn’t have the spare cash to go gambling on some new and unproven technology promising to “revolutionize” the way we do money.
To put it bluntly, I was so poor. So poor, in fact, that by the last week of each month, my grocery store visits would come down to a choice between buying food or killing the hunger pains with a pack of cigarettes. So, I came to the conclusion that, while eating meat was considered a luxury, gambling on the future of digitized tokens was not within the scope of logical spending. Back then, bitcoin was trading for under $10.
Let’s fast forward to 2015. Having gotten a few good years of work under my belt, I was an experienced employee and had moved up to head marketing strategy and execution for one of the most prominent fintech startups in Europe. The workplace was great. Most of my colleagues were hardcore software developers who worked ceaselessly on retrieving people’s financial data from banks without asking for banks’ permission. As if to enforce the kind of work being done, there was even a good old Jolly Roger flying in the office. As you can imagine, many of my colleagues were huge fans of Bitcoin and everything that it stood for.
Since I’d grown quite a lot professionally, the numbers that indicated my salary had also seen a substantial addition. I was finally able to buy cigarettes and food, while even having a chunk of money that could be set aside for a rainy day. Working in this world, I knew more than most that just keeping your money in the bank is not the way to go and I started thinking of investing my extra capital, as I had no real plan for spending it.
My colleagues would fling the term “Bitcoin” around the office quite often, but I was still skeptical as to whether it would be a solid investment. At the time, bitcoin was trading at around $250, having just crashed from its all-time high of around $1,000. I approached it with my well-trained investment brain and concluded that bitcoin szx most likely never going to recover and that it would keep dwindling until just a few of the most hardened nerds were still clinging to it.
I was even looking at the Bitcoin dominance charts and seeing that, despite this fall, it still had a massive dominance over the…
Read More: What I Learned From Ignoring Bitcoin – Bitcoin Magazine