In the last several months, you might have heard stories about people striking it rich and losing big by speculating on virtual money -- or cryptocurrency, if you want to sound all fancy-pants cyberpunk and shit -- known as Bitcoin.
Despite Bitcoin's volatile busts and booms (one bitcoin cost $13 in January 2013 and is valued at roughly $900 now) and the fact that governments around the world are giving it the legal stink eye, some of you may still be curious about it. After all, who wouldn't want to invest in a magical pinata that seemingly explodes into a geyser of fine topaz every few days?
Well, before you get too giddy, know that Bitcoin isn't wizard money and has some pretty significant downsides, namely ...
#4. Bitcoins Are Easy to Lose
Being a virtual currency, Bitcoin doesn't exist in the real world. The reason why Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies like Dogecoin (no, seriously, this is a thing) are so popular is because users transfer the currency directly between each other and don't require a middleman like PayPal or a bank. (This also explains why Internet drug dealers are oh so fond of cryptocurrencies.)
Before Craigslist, millions of sex-starved people all over the globe aimlessly wandered the Earth, mashing their genitals onto bales of hay or phonographs or whatever antiques they found lying around.
And after the advent of Craigslist, these lost souls finally found their outlet -- a website that allows total strangers to ask other total strangers to massage their prostates with rhubarb stalks. But surprisingly, some Craigslist horndogs are too proud to scream "BANG ME BLUE" from the Internet mountaintops and are resorting to more subtle means to get the sex. For example:
#5. $1 Apartment Requires Nudity, Some Touching
For those readers living in Washington, D.C., you missed out on the bargain of a lifetime this past November: a $1-a-month penthouse apartment. There was a catch, though. Namely, you'd have to be butt-naked the entire time:
Forget it, pants; it's Chinatown.
The memo is an important tool for any employer -- how else does one tell the interns to clean the wild badgers out of the break room? The problem is that the bigger the company, the more disconnected from reality the higher-up penning the memo is, and the more the outside world regards your management less as actual human beings and more as the praetorian guards of Candyland.
#4. Walmart Tells Managers What to Think About Unions
It probably won't surprise you to learn that Walmart isn't a big fan of unions, since treating employees like dog turds is apparently part of the company's motto by now. And while it's still illegal to outright forbid people from unionizing, leaked documents reveal that Walmart gets around that little detail by teaching its managers how to make unions sound super lame. For instance, if you're a manager and someone asks your opinion on the matter, here it is. This is your opinion:
"You can speak for yourself, as long as you use our words."
Besides serving as a brilliant case study for the evolution of 1990s hairstyles, The X-Files taught an entire generation that Occam's razor -- the simplest explanation for strange phenomena is usually the correct one -- is boring and stupid and completely wrong. No, the superior explanation is always 44 minutes of aliens and Sasquatches.
That same lesson applies to these four recent news stories, which are all so bizarre that even the Gillian Andersonest of Gillian Andersons would have a tough time denying the involvement of interstellar poltergeists.
#4. The Mars Rover Found a Mystery Rock (That Wasn't There Before)
As far as exciting discoveries go, Mars has been kind of a wet noodle -- the Opportunity rover has found no signs of ancient teleportation arks, atmospheric reactors, or dead John Carters. Just as it seemed we were all about to stop pretending we cared about any of Opportunity's billion-dollar photographs of orange dirt, it sent back this picture:
Big deal, it's a shiny rock. We've got those here on Earth. Now, look at a photo taken of the same area 12 days earlier: