The First Attempt: NFTs

Digital collectibles, a mystery box, and an anxious man.

Here to see me try and create wealth in unconventional ways? Welcome to my first real attempt with NFTs (non-fungible tokens). Looking for a place to start learning about NFTs? Try here.

It’s Saturday at 5:00 PM and I’m pacing around my house.

I’m stressing about my internet connection, transaction fees, and the contents of a mysterious digital box. Even for me, this is a little strange…

But it’s an honest portrayal of the last few moments of my life, and in these few moments, I am incredibly anxious. In the next hour, 500 boxes of digital art from the NFTBoxes project will be up for grabs. I need one. I have to add to my NFT collection.

That collection accidentally started in the fall of 2017, before I knew what an NFT was. All I knew was that I needed to have a CryptoKitty..and well I made damn sure I got one. Say hello to Sneezy.

But forget about Sneezy and fast-forward a few years to December 2020, when I joined NBA TopShot, an NFT platform that offers NBA player highlights packaged as “moments,” like digital trading cards. (DapperLabs is behind both TopShot and CryptoKitties)

I signed up, messaged a few friends about it, bought a few packs and then put the site in the back of my mind. Coincidentally, the next time I remember logging back in, TopShot was dropping a new featured pack called “Deck the Hoops,” to commemorate the Christmas Day games.

Determined to at least give the packs a good look, I booted up the site while I was in line at a Popeyes (god those chicken sandwiches are so good). In between ordering my sandwich and the first drive thru window, I moved through the purchasing process. I selected quantity two, hit buy, headed to the payment page and then for reasons I can’t explain - exited. For some reason, in the process of buying a $6 sandwich, a $230 pack of digital trading cards felt too rich. At the time, I didn’t think too much about it and I really enjoyed my sandwich.

Let’s fast-forward one week from the Popeyes incident to January 15th.

That day Jonathan Bales dropped his piece on digital collectibles and his $35,000 TopShot purchase…and shit changed. Like shit, REALLY changed. Call it Bales’ influence on the DFS and gambling worlds, or whatever you want, but a group of likeminded degenerates were propelled to the TopShot streets, sending the marketplace and the corresponding moment valuations into orbit.

I blew it.

5:45 PM: I’m a nervous wreck, 15 minutes until box drop.

That “just missed the big one” feeling is fueling my anxiety as I await the dropping of these boxes.

Previously the fear of looking silly has kept me from taking even remotely bold chances.

What’s that one saying? Scared money don’t make money.

Enter my conviction.

Why am I willing to finally take a stand for NFTBoxes?

A few reasons.

  1. Take this from one of the recent Lucky Maverick posts from Bales that introduced his fervor for the opportunity of digital art.

The concept of digital art and similar areas are so new, which is what is attractive to me. Could I be the dumbest motherfucker on the planet? Perhaps. But I think the idea of people buying internet money a decade ago probably looked pretty dumb as well. To me, it’s a smart gamble because the potential payoffs are unbelievable. The fact that there’s a movement toward things similar to digital art—and digital art itself over the past 6-12 months—and my natural inclination is to dismiss it should be even more reason to be bullish, similar to the idea of Bitcoin years ago, as people initially writing it off is what allows for the big payoffs that accompany being first.

I too love that this space is so new, with plenty of possibility. My mom still doesn’t even believe it’s real! That is typically a good sign.

  1. I’m getting the goods.

By getting the goods, I just mean I’m participating in a project run by sharp, respected people. As I did more searches on Twitter about NFTs, I kept coming across the same few people. Eventually I stumbled into Pranksy, who I now know is a legendary NFT collector and curator.

From there, I found Pranksy’s project, NFTBoxes, followed by none-other than Jonathan Bales, and a few other noted sharps in the DFS space, Peter Jennings and Jeremy Levine. While that shouldn’t be enough to invest on, it was enough for me to dig deeper.

You see, I’ve learned in working closely with really smart people that when they start to believe in something, you should at least keep your eyes open. In fact, that’s basically how I’ve gotten to where I am. I made a lot of smart friends and I let them lead me to opportunity.

This is just another one of those times.

From the NFTBoxes Twitter, I joined the Discord, and the rest is history. I was sold.

I was ready to commit 0.5 ETH (approximately $650 at the time of writing) for a mysterious box of 11 NFTs.

I would not let myself miss out. Not again.

As I settled into my seat for the final anxious moments another wave of conviction hit me. While I had previously planned to only purchase one box from the project, with just a few minutes remaining until the box dropped at 6:00 PM, I transferred more ETH to my MetaMask wallet with the intention of grabbing TWO boxes.

5:59 PM - It’s go time. My wallet is connected to, I’ve practiced the mechanics of increasing my gas on MetaMask, and I’m ready.

I had decided that two boxes - two investments, two potential means of wealth creation, would increase my options.

With ownership of two boxes, I have the option to hold on to one box and all the NFTs inside, while flipping the other on the secondary market ahead of the drop if the price is right.

At 6:00, I refreshed the page, calmly upped the quantity to two, upped my gas to “fast” and let go. There was a moment of panic while my balance didn’t decrease, and I thought I had struck out….but around 6:02 PM - transaction confirmed.

I spent 1ETH (~$1350), plus some gas (the transaction fee) to land two Coldie headlined NFTBoxes. For the next four or five days owners have the ability to flip them on the secondary market. After that - the boxes will lock, and the NFTs will drop, sending art to all those strong enough to hold at least one box.

I’ll be one of those owners.

Simply put, I’m confident that the value of the boxes and the artwork inside will be worth more tomorrow than it is today…

Could I really be the second dumbest motherfucker on the planet? Perhaps.