Crypto Lunch 001 - Join me as I Turn Cryptocurrency into Food!
Welcome to the premiere of my Crypto Lunch series! I'm sharing my adventure as I transition to using cryptocurrencies in my daily life. My first step will be to make myself a delicious lunch using funds from crypto earned online.
A new Crypto Lunch post will be released each week, showing my progress, sharing my discoveries, and detailing exactly how I turn the cryptocurrency I earn into a meal on my plate! If it can be done, I'm going to do it!
Ultimately, I hope to earn a living and support my family doing what I do best - creating quality original content on important topics. Lunch represents about half way between where I am now (just getting started), and where I eventually want to be. Once I'm able to connect my crypto world with my real world - and scale my way up to lunch - I'll be on my way!
Secondary goals include becoming less dependent on governments and their fiat currencies, maintaining my privacy, and showing others how even a layperson can realistically do it.
How I Got Here
If I haven't met you before, I'm DRutter, a mid-40s Canadian guy living in the province of British Columbia. My educational background is in the sciences, my career was in psychiatric nursing, but my burning passion became Liberty, and I left the mainstream to run an online business and get involved in activism. I've uploaded regularly to the DRutter channel on YouTube for 12 years, and in the past few years, I've also been contributing to other platforms. I'm deplatformed on FaceBook and heavily shadowbanned on YouTube and Bitchute.
Since the beginning of recorded history, writers have been able to earn a living doing what they do - although some are better paid than others (generally according to their skill and experience). As the internet has become ubiquitous, writers (and bloggers, vloggers, etc) are now able to earn a living online. Cryptocurrency has gone from a quirky experiment to a widely-used financial infrastructure, and the possibility now exists to earn crypto for online content, then use that income to pay bills and put food on the table.
I've been interested in cryptocurrency since 2011, and have helped many of my subscribers get involved. I'm not an investor, and decided to stay out of the market during the crazy bull run of 2013, but got myself a Bitcoin wallet in 2016 as the price stabilized, and more real-world uses became available to the user. I've dabbled with a few other cryptos and blockchains, I've watched with interest as decentralized infrastructure is built, and now I'm personally ready for the next level. But...
Is Crypto Ready For ME?
As I wrote here...
Until the layperson can use cryptocurrency cheaply and conveniently to buy food and pay bills, without a privacy-destroying smart device or centralized bank account, crypto isn't ready for mass adoption! I mean that not as an attack, but as constructive criticism. I've had big hopes for crypto for almost 10 years, but it still isn't a reality for me. I won't use a smart device and I am unbanked, and I'm not alone. Crypto needs to be accessible to people who value privacy and decentralization!
Despite these limitations, I do have some things going for me...
I may be disabled, but something I'm still proficient with is a camera. I can speak clearly and write well. I'm able to get my points across to the reader/listener/viewer. I have knowledge of several topics, including expertise in a few.
I have 15 years experience with videography and a lifetime of experience with photography. I can't code, but I have good general skill with computers and the internet.
I have a YouTube channel of 9000 dedicated subscribers (heavily shadowbanned and censored now, though). A good portion of them are into crypto.
My Steem and Hive posts are routinely capable of generating $1+ each (so $2+ if I post something on both chains). If the post is really good, and I'm lucky, it can make $10+, but that's not commonplace (yet).
I have a LBRY following that is slowly growing. I earn LBC there, but it's not very much, and I currently have no way to convert it into anything else, or spend it, so I'm just using it on the platform to power up my posts there. I can crosspost Crypto Lunch to LBRY, which may drive some traffic to Steem/Hive.
I have a Bitcoin wallet I'm semi-familiar with using, and have made a few incoming and outgoing transfers over the years. I want to improve my understanding of Bitcoin software wallets and transactions.
I have a safe and inexpensive way to convert between BTC, STEEM, and HIVE. These three will initially make up the backbone of my crypto finances.
Although I don't have local shops that take cryptos, some still accept cash, and until that changes, that's how I intend to pay for groceries. I can turn groceries into meals, that's not a problem! So the only real missing link is a way to convert crypto into cash. (More on that below in "The Plan".)
As for actual funds, due to a few years of illness and other turmoil, I'm fairly poor. From nothing, I've stabilized and rebuilt slightly, but I don't have anything significant except my 7500 HIVE, which is all powered up right now. Its current value is 1900 USD (2500 CAD), and earns me a little on curation each week. The price is currently way undervalued in my opinion, so I don't plan to spend what I've got powered up. I do intend to earn crypto with my weekly posts, and pull that out once I've got enough for lunch!
Hopefully those things, plus your help and our collective ingenuity, will be able to make it happen!
On my YouTube upload of "Crypto is NOT Ready", a comment was left recommending I look into a crypto startup called Bylls.
Initial investigation on their website looks promising. I think I'd be able to use it to convert BTC into bills paid in Canadian dollars (CAD). That might be useful in the future, but it doesn't help me get cash to buy groceries now.
As I detailed 6 months ago in this article, I'm more than ready to monetize my content, but thus far, it has eluded me. The crypto world has advanced and evolved, but if we can't use it to buy stuff - without destroying our privacy or using centralized systems - then it's not going to win people away from the legacy banking model.
(Please note, my wish to preserve some of privacy isn't because I plan to evade taxes. Sure, that may be one reason some people like to pay with cash and not identify themselves, but there are many other legitimate reasons. If I'm able to earn a living through cryptos, I'll look into the appropriate reporting methods. I'm a private person, that's all. I wish I didn't have to include this section but unfortunately it's important, as a lot of people jump to conclusions about other peoples' privacy motives.)
The question becomes: Can I turn Bitcoin into cash without identifying myself?
No bank account, no government ID, no smart device. Just a PC, internet connection, and whatever services can be found in a typical Canadian town. (A Bitcoin ATM comes to mind, but there aren't any here, and besides, they require government ID and/or a smart device.)
A slightly inferior option that might be possible is a card (similar to debit or credit) that spends your BTC balance as Canadian Dollars, instantly converting behind the scenes. Or maybe it allows (for a fee) cash withdrawals off your BTC balance from any ATM (I used to have a PayPal card that did that.) I don't know if such a thing exists, but it should. If something like that is available in Canada, and doesn't require a smart device or bank account, I'd be interested. I'll keep looking. Please let me know if you have any ideas.
Update in 1 week!
Today (June 18 2020) is Thursday, so I'll make an update post (Crypto Lunch 002) next Thursday. In it, I'll reveal how much (in various crypto) I've received toward my lunch, and hopefully have some leads on ways to privately convert crypto to cash (or just spend it directly). If I have enough to buy lunch, and a way to make it happen, I'll announce the dish I decide on (that is in the allotted price range). The following week, I'll buy, cook, and enjoy that lunch! And of course, photograph it for the following week's update.
My desire is that as I go, momentum and interest will build, people will get entertainment and information out of following along, and the amount available for lunch will grow. One lunch every few weeks might become lunch every week, and then maybe even several lunches a week, and so on. Like I said above, the goal is to earn a living doing what I do. This one project isn't going to do all that itself, but it'll be a big start! I hope you're as excited as I am to see how it turns out.
Of course, I might get 47 cents for this post, and end up with a handful of peanuts for lunch, who knows? That variable is up to you, the reader!
How to make Crypto Lunch happen
You're welcome to enjoy these posts without giving back, and I'm glad you find them worthwhile! All you need to do is follow along, enjoy the weekly adventure.
But hopefully some readers and curators will provide me with crypto, to make the whole process happen! Here are a few ways to do that:
- upvote this post
- send HIVE or HBD directly to my Hive wallet
- send STEEM or SBD directly to my Steem wallet
- send BTC directly (1NWGEhWfeg4kscoBUFNqzRT1UN7qjLgnVa)
- use a service like TipU
- send any kind of tokens to my Hive-Engine or Steem-Engine accounts
Some help spreading awareness of the project would be very appreciated, because it will lead to more crypto to buy lunch with - and more people learning how to make crypto part of everyday life. That's good for everybody.
Thank you for reading, and hopefully, for your participation! There's no such thing as a free lunch, so I hope the crypto community feels I've earned one with this post. :) And hopefully there's plenty more to come!
I'll leave you with a few other lunches and snacks that come from my kitchen!
DIG IN, Everybody!