Perty pics taken by my dad, an expert nature photographer
I’m writing this to remind myself that at some point in the future, hopefully when we’re all clear of this coronavirus stuff, I’ll once again be able to laugh off my fears of a global takeover by chupacabra zombies.
I’ve come to Oregon to keep an eye on my parents. We’ve stocked up on food, water and medicine in case things go bad with this virus.
Some of my friends think this is extreme, that I’ve suddenly built a bunker in the woods stocked with shelves of refried beans and thousands of those metallic packets containing astronaut ice cream. In all seriousness, my parents are old, and this virus has taken a particularly heavy toll on old people, so I wanna be around in case … god forbid.
Moreover, based on initial numbers from what we know about its spread, the new virus is possibly more lethal than the Spanish flu of 1918/19. The latter killed tens of millions of people, more than all those who died during the First World War. I’m also troubled by the vulnerability of our supply chains coming out of China, where manufacturing has slowed dramatically because of the country’s clampdown to stop the spread of coronavirus. It seems possible that basic goods we take for granted — goods that magically appear on the shelves of Walmart and Home Depot — might soon not be there.
Lord knows America would be nothing without its hyper-consumerist Walmarts.
So, anyway, given that so many of us can work from home, it just makes sense to do so from Oregon at the moment, I think. Talk about the luxuries of the White Collar Man. And I might very well look back at this post one day and laugh, thinking how much I overreacted. I hope that’s the case, but I don’t wanna take any chances. I’m also readying for the chupacabra zombies …
Oh, I’m leaving a lovely picture of an Oregon sunset. It’s perty:
I’m doing some marketing for my dad here. Yeah, it’s shameless, but it’s just that he’s such a wonderful nature photographer. Really, he is. He’s been at it for over 50 years now, and his feed never ceases to surprise me. (I’m Hugh Edward Naylor IV, and he’s the III, by the way. It sounds regal, yes, but it’s actually not. Just a bunch of hillbillies who’ve kept the naming going for far too long …)
If you’re like me, and you’re probably not, then you’re watching the price of bitcoin fluctuate … wildly. Lots of people have gotten into the crypto game in recent years, and when they see the huge price swings that bitcoin regularly goes through, they FREAK OUT. And so they make impulsive decisions at, like, a $400 drop in a cupla days, pulling out all their cash.
Well, I’m here to say, big deal. Happens all the time. Don’t freak out.
This isn’t the stock market, people. So don’t project your S&P angst on the crypto-asset market. They’re apples and oranges, cats and dogs, humans and chimpanzees, Oscars and AVNs … NOT EQUIVALENTS.
Huge price swings are normal in the crypto market, a result of fixed(ish)-supply assets and shifting demand. I won’t get into the details, but many cryptocurrencies — and especially bitcoin —have built-in mechanisms that absolutely limit supply … like, there will only ever be 21 million bitcoin ever mined into the supply. No less. No more. That’s it. There will only ever be 21 million — period. Get it? (It’s the opposite of the Fed, by the way, which prints money whenever the heck it wants and, in turn, gradually impoverishes you with inflation.)
Again, it’s technical, but just remember that bitcoin’s supply is so fixed that almost any change in demand for it will result in what comes across as exaggerated price swings. CATCH YOUR BREATH. MEDITATE. GET A FACIAL.
This is normal.
So, what does this mean? Well, don’t throw all your money in bitcoin. Not anywhere close to your life savings, please. But maybe a small percentage of your portfolio, like three percent or something (or more, if you’re willing to incur more risk/uncertainty). Talk to a crypto-savvy investment advisor. I’m not one, by the way … just a dude who reads like a Rain Man who’s incapable of memorizing a phone book.
Long term, bitcoin has been one of the best, if not the best, performing asset in history. That’s not exaggeration. It’ll dip, swing, swoon and freak you the fu#* out, but you should respond to this like one of those Buckingham Palace guards with the tubular hats who can’t move even when he gets kicked in the naughty bits by ornery boys or flashed by creepy men.
Just get a drink. Kick back. And see the fluctuation for what it is — bitcoin, an asset that is owned by no one, controlled by no one one, truly free money, is working. How amazing.
As for boning up on your bitcoin knowledge, well …
… don’t read this crypto advice. It’s stupid, and it’s from me, from a long time ago, when I understood little of how bitcoin works. For shame. I’m a monster.
No, instead, read these for more background info on how bitcoin works, why it was created, etc:
I’ve got a post coming soon about foreign correspondents and awards. Stay tuned …
I’ve got more substantive posts in the pipeline. For the time being, here’s a pic I took on the outskirts of Fallujah, when Iraqi security forces drove Islamic State militants out of the city.