Like many bitcoiners who came before me, I thought this cycle would be the one that would end everything and lead us to hyperbitcoinization. Boy was I wrong.
This is an opinion editorial by Cory Tucek, CEO of Movies Plus and host of the Bitcoin Made Simple Podcast.
To all the rabble who came before me, listening to your tireless explanations and warnings has saved me from some terrible mistakes. Many Thanks.
“As a bitcoin newbie, I thought this time was different.” — Me (and every bitcoiner past, present and future)
I made the above statement to my wife just a few weeks ago, prior to the carnage that brought us back to $20,000. I was sure that this time it was different. There would be no more 70% drawdowns in Bitcoin. This was hyperbitcoinization, the moment Bitcoin would surge above $100,000. This is when bitcoin became the world’s reserve currency.
It was… until it wasn’t. Don’t get me wrong, that day is yet to come. It’s just a bit further than I originally thought.
The purpose of this article is not to rehash what all Bitcoiners who have been here before already know; It is intended to serve more as a warning to future Bitcoin newbies. When you delve into bitcoin, you will think, “This time is different. Thank goodness I got in at that price before it takes off and never comes back!” You’ll think, “Good thing bear markets and drawdowns are a thing of the past.” That means you’ll think all the wrong things and you’ll pick them up think right away.
To give you perspective, here is my bitcoin journey.
I first heard about Bitcoin in 2012 when a filmmaker I worked with, Nick Mross, posted a documentary he directed on Facebook. It had no title back then, but eventually became the movie The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin. I looked at it, considered speculating, but like everyone else, my next thought was, “It’s going to be hacked.”
The following year I saw the price go up to $100 per bitcoin and I considered throwing in $1,000 and grabbing the heck 10 bitcoin, but like everyone else I thought I was late to the game and would surely lose my money . Instead, I used that money to add a few extra days to my honeymoon. “Hey honey, I got us three extra nights on our honeymoon for only $200,000,” I should have said.
I told this story to Ben Prentice and Heavily Armed Clown and they reassured me and said if I had bought 10 Bitcoin for $1,000 I would have sold it for $1,200 thinking I was a genius. Truer words have never been spoken.
For some time after that, bitcoin was something I dabbled in occasionally but never enough to fully understand. In 2017 the price went up and again I was late – Bitcoin at $10,000 was too rich for my blood. It was sure to crash, and this time I paid close enough attention that if it crashed I felt entitled. It was over; Bitcoin was dead, but it hung around until 2018. It didn’t die. Then I started watching more closely to see if it might bounce back and it did. In spring 2020 I was ready for FOMO in Bitcoin.
At the beginning of the pandemic, it started with “We own some bitcoin” and quickly escalated to “Liquid everything and buy as much as we can!” I was determined to buy as much as I could before it revived its previous all-time high of $20,000 . I did, and then Bitcoin began its run. It has exceeded $15,000. I was a genius! It cracked $20,000. My IQ went up by the second!
When it broke $30,000 I started telling people how I did knew with 100% certainty that this would happen. I even had another great idea that no one else had thought of: “I’m going to start a podcast! About bitcoin!” The Bitcoin Made Simple podcast network is the only good thing to come out of this phase, not because I’m great at podcasting or because I understand bitcoin, but because the interviews I’ve done have made it clearer to me how little I knew about Bitcoin and how much I had to learn.
Then Elon Musk invested. I knew I was smart, but now I was even smarter than the only guy who sent rockets into space that weren’t shaped like male genitals.
Bitcoin hit $40,000. I tried to get every person I knew to invest before it went off and broke $100,000. My Movies Plus streaming platform had just attracted investors, and I convinced them to make the entire investment in Bitcoin, because “To the Moon!”
Bitcoin broke the $50,000 mark. I was so ahead of the game that I made Hal Finney look like a noob.
Then it broke $60,000. It was Satoshi and me. We did this together, just the two of us.
Then it suddenly went down a bit. I confidently told people it was an expected drop because that one time I saw someone post a chart with an arrow. “Just look at S2F (stock-to-flow), it’s only going up from here.”
Then the bottom fell out. It crashed into the $30,000 mark! What happened?! It all had to be Musk’s fault. What an idiot. I even texted Guy Swann the day it crashed and said, “Did I earn my bear market badge today?” I literally blushed as I typed that out. i was so naive I might as well have tattooed “Hi, I’m new to bitcoin. That’s how I’ll fix it,” written on my forehead.
I spent the summer nights of 2021 on Twitter Spaces railing against the powers that be and urging everyone to fight for freedom, but I found myself slowly stopping to talk about how much I knew about Bitcoin. The realization set in that I knew nothing about Bitcoin. I had to shut up and study. That’s when I thought I finally understood Matt Odell’s great quote “keep humble and stack sats”. I was humble again, just stacking sats and learning again.
Then bitcoin started to rally and I thought, “Wow, I’m lucky, we only had a 50% drop.” Bitcoin was racing towards its all-time high, so I went “to zero” and went all-in on bitcoin.
As soon as we’re back above $60,000, all of us knew that’s it. This was the moment we had been waiting for. Hell, look at the tweet which I sent at the top of the price campaign.
Nobody saw what came next. (Except for HODL Magoo, and you can hear him explain it on this podcast.) The price has been pushed down again. It fell and fell and then landed in the mountain range that we were stuck in all summer of 2021. “It’s okay,” I thought. “The thesis hasn’t changed and I haven’t had to experience the maximum pain yet.”
At this point, I started taking my own advice: only invest money you can leave untouched for more than four years (sorry, “get to zero” gear), keep your head down, find ways to ” fiat mining world to grow your cash flows and stack bitcoin. Or as Odell puts it, “Keep humble and stack sats.”
It finally dawned on me: bitcoin is a test of many things, but it really tests your ability to stay humble. Humility goes a long way in life. Thanks to Bitcoin, I’m on my way to becoming more humble in all aspects of life.
I was glad to be humiliated, but even more glad I didn’t have to deal with those 70%+ drawdowns because “this time was different”. Until recently, when that time began to look like that of the past.
I never understood until recently why the “keeping humble” part was so important. If you hang out on Twitter and pay attention to the mood, almost everyone is down. They’ve taken all the punches they can take and it feels like everyone is backing into the corner. Everyone, that is, except the real plebs who’ve been here before and aren’t going anywhere. Follow their lead. This is why staying humble is so important, as it helps you not to slack off in difficult times.
Bitcoin is not about me and it is not about you. It’s an opportunity to escape the clutches of the Fiat world. It won’t happen on your timeline and it won’t wait until you’re ready. It will just keep producing blocks, one at a time.
So if you are new to this room, listen to those around you, those who have been through hell and are still standing. They are the ones to listen to. If they try to sell you any coin other than bitcoin, block and move on. If they seem too “toxic,” they’re honestly just trying to look out for your best interests. Ask questions, learn from your mistakes and most importantly… stay humble and stack sats because next time will be no different than the last – until one day it is no different.
This is a guest post by Cory Tucek. The opinions expressed are solely their own and do not necessarily reflect those of BTC Inc. or Bitcoin Magazine.
The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.