The Official Bitcoin Billionaire's Handbook

The Official Bitcoin Billionaire's Handbook

Long, long ago, in 2009, a group of proud pioneers began using the independent peer-to-peer electronic cash system known as Bitcoin. Nick Szabo and the Winklevii were among us. It was like the Wild West, a hazy, far-off time when all you could buy with crypto was a Papa John’s large pepperoni and a gram of MDMA on the online black market known as Silk Road.

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Now, just about everyone is panning for Bitcoin. More than 100,000 merchants accept it. You can even buy a house in San Francisco with a retractable roof and a Tesla charging station!

Suddenly there’s a fresh new wave of Bitcoin bros joining our khaki-wardrobed ranks, that of the whales: the 4 percent of Bitcoin holders who control 95 percent of the wealth. Before we admit you into our pampered surroundings, we need to make sure you understand our code of honor (insofar as we have one) before the rest of the world jumps on the blockchain train (or the whole thing tanks, whichever comes first).

Like the preps, punks, and robber barons before us, you Fresh Princes of Bit Air must understand that our lifestyle has rules, and any deviation from them could prove ruinous. How do you rush-job a nouveau riche lifestyle in just a few months, especially when you’re not really “new money”—because your money isn’t even money to begin with? We have some tips.

Our Pedigree
A Social Register of our forebears

VINCENT TULLO/NEW YORK TIMES (WINKLEVOSS TWINS); ZUMA PRESS, INC./ALAMY (SHREM); PETER DASILVA/NEW YORK TIMES (LARSEN); CINDY ORD/GETTY IMAGES FOR YAHOO (MASTERS)

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The Winklevii. The studly and lanky twins, with their Harvard Crew biceps and cauldrons of resentment for Mark Zuckerberg, Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss are everything you should aspire to be, Olympians in embroidered polo shirts who turned an $11 million Bitcoin investment into a cool $1 billion.

Charlie Shrem. Brooklyn computer geek turned ex-con by age 27. Baller. With a look that recalls a frat house bathroom sink covered in beard clippings, Charlie Shrem is a relic from the illicit early days of crypto. He now lives in Sarasota. Net worth: rumored to be near $1 billion, minus legal fees.

Chris Larsen. The co-founder of the financial transaction company Ripple, he is the friendly face of the “financial privacy” movement (no matter how sinister this whole thing may turn out to be). With 5.19 billion XRP (ripples) in personal holdings and a net worth of $37.3 billion, he is richer than Zuckerberg—the ultimate Bit-goal.

Blythe Masters. Wunderkind JP Morgan Chase exec turned CEO of Digital Asset Holdings and blockchain evangelist. Hot, brilliant, and polished. A Burberry trench coat come to life. Net worth: as Helen Mirren would put it, “Deliriously unfathomable.”

Satoshi Nakamoto. The Many-Faced Crypto God. Satoshi Nakamoto is the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin. Could be anyone. Could be no one. Could be more than one person. Hell—could even be a woman. (Just don’t tell the bros that.)

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Our Spirit Animals
The only gods we pray to

(From left) Oscar Isaac in Ex Machina, Jude Law in Gattaca, That preacher Justin Bieber worships, Armie Hammer (as the Winklevii), Leo DiCaprio. Just Leo.

DNA/KOBAL/REX/SHUTTERSTOCK (ISAAC); COLUMBIA/KOBAL/REX/SHUTTERSTOCK (LAW); TOBY ZEMA/NEWSPIX/GETTY IMAGES (PREACHER); COLUMBIA/TRISTAR (HAMMER AS WINKLEVII); MARY CYBULSKI/PARAMOUNT PICTURES/COURTESY EVERETT COLLECTION (DICAPRIO)

Our Wardrobe
A subtle approach to disrupting your closet

Bitcoin Barons. The successful cryptocrat personifies bland normcore.

MACKENZIE STROH/CONTOUR BY GETTY IMAGES (WINKLEVOSS TWINS)

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The truly confident Bit bro does not wear ostentatious clothes or bright colors. A muted palette and matte cotton blends are your best bet. There is no better way to project confidence that you are on the verge of something entirely new than to dress like an average Wisconsin tourist at the Empire State Building. Also, spending money shows that you don’t believe in the revolution. Hodl!*

*: A purposeful misspelling of “hold,” because Bitcoin billionaires can’t be bothered to spell-check.

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Our Creature Comforts
Just a few quaint tchotchkes

First, How to Start the Day. Brush pizza crusts off your keyboard and get the latest numbers on Bitcoinmagazine.com. Your net worth may have either tanked or skyrocketed before you rose from your slumber to meet the day. Then have a pour-over coffee, followed by a Bulletproof coffee, followed by a nitro coffee.Bitcoin Barons The successful cryptocrat personifies bland normcore.

The Yacht. (We don’t call them boats.) Land ownership is less important than yacht ownership. A yacht well stocked with Red Bull, Cristal, and Blue Apron delivery is the ideal place for a cuddle puddle, offshore trading, and surviving the upcoming world financial implosion. Don’t worry if it feels smaller than you thought it would—this is just a placeholder for your private colony on Mars.

This Lamborghini goes for $400,000–so worth the splurge.

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The Ride. A Lambo, bro. Jenna from junior-year chem who brutally friend-zoned you will be begging to ride your fat Lambor­ghini any day now. (Alternative: a reserved seat on the first Virgin Galactic trip to the moon.)

The Drone. A good, sturdy drone is as crucial and indispensable as a black Labrador is to the Nantucketer. Drones take photos of cliff diving, entrées at Madcap, and overhead shots of the cleavage of that K-pop star you invited over to your hotel roof deck in Puerto Rico.

The Mavic Air goes for $900.

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The Cuisine. Use only Bitcoin, eat only meat. That means all ketogenic, all the time. Meat pies, meat breakfasts, meat milkshakes. No more of that plant-based diet. As Michael Goldstein, president of the Satoshi Nakamoto Institute, said, “Bitcoin is a revolt against fiat money**, and an all-meat diet is a revolt against fiat food.”

The Staff. Do you need someone to prepare your Blue Apron? (So confusing!) AI is preferable, but until they create a robot that not only sounds like ScarJo but looks like ScarJo, try TaskRabbit. For more intense needs, try the Hitman Network. They accept crypto.

**: That’s what we call government-issued currency.

A Note On Philanthropy

Portray a concern for the environment, gender equality, or the financial empowerment of the developing world. Don’t worry, you won’t be speaking to anyone outside your own demographic at any time, so you can just make stuff up that sounds environmentish or vaguely “global.”

Terms like parity and microfinancing will help divert attention from the fact that so far the only thing Bitcoin owners have effectively organized are money launderettes and an open-air narcotics e-bazaar.

Acceptable Topics at the Crypto Castle Dinner Table

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  1. Lambos.
  2. Hillary and Trump being essentially the same.
  3. Taxes and how hilarious it is that people pay them.
  4. How beta it is to earn money by performing labor that contributes to society.
  5. Don’t mention debit cards!
    1. GETTY IMAGES (WINEGLASS, BIKINI MODEL); DBOX FOR CIM GROUP/MACKLOWE PROPERTIES (432 PARK AVENUE); DAVID LIVINGSTON/GETTY IMAGES (LINTON); NIKLAS HALLE’N/AFP/GETTY IMAGES (FINANCIAL TIMES); 21 CLUB (SOUTHSIDE COCKTAIL); ALAMY (RED BULL)

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      Tips For Rising Female Bitcoiners

      Galia Benartzi (left), of Bancor, and Elizabeth Stark, of Lightning Labs.

      CHANCE YEH/WIREIMAGE (BENARTZI); ROBERT KENNEY/ASSOCIATED PRESS (STARK)

      You are strong, insightful women. Don’t be mistaken for founder hounders*** or social media Bitcoin baes. But also don’t shout your Bit-acumen from rooftop bars. When Broseph starts explaining how his crypto reached 20K “sats****” by the end of today, just let him think you have no idea what he’s talking about. Think of all the mansplaining as free intel.

      ***: Nerd gold-diggers.
      ****: A satoshi, the smallest Bitcoin unit.

      This story appears in the April 2018 issue of Town & Country. Subscribe Today

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