Michael Lewis, financial journalist and author of MoneyBall, The Big Short, Blind Side and Flash Boys, is an expert in Sabermetrics. Bitcoin? Not so much.
Few years ago, as part of a research, Lewis was gifted $5 worth of Bitcoin. This incited an interest to educate himself and write about it. To that end, he spent half a day in ‘a den of bitcoin enthusiasts' in Silicon Valley.
He was curious as to whether he would be able to spend his bitcoins and buy something with it. He was helped to set up his wallet but when he tried to buy a cup of coffee with bitcoin in Palo Alto, it obviously didn't work.
“It was a disaster,” Lewis shares. “Of course it didn’t work. I said, ‘Why don’t you call me when I can buy something with bitcoin,’ and I kept the $5 on my phone.”
At Bitcoin's current value, the $5 which Lewis has since held in his wallet is now worth $378. He quipped, “The bitcoin is now more valuable than my phone.”
Yet, Lewis is a bitcoin skeptic. “I do get the blockchain idea — but I don't completely get bitcoin”, he said in a recent interview.
But that's alright because he doesn't think much of Twitter either. “When I saw Twitter, I remember thinking if I want to speak in haiku — like why would I ever do that,” Lewis said. “If I have something useful to say, it's not going to happen in two sentences.”