The Moving Process In Montevideo Continues

After recieving the key to the apartment Monday and electricity on Tuesday1 I have begun the process of moving into the apartment. Given the short distance and light weight of the things to be moved, none of my things are enaging in the whole fletes business. Instead I've been spending my time waiting for the big things to arrive. Small things I've just been walking over at my leisure.

The sleeping surface arrived near the halftime mark of its six hour delivery window. I went to Divino on Tuesday where I found a "sofa cama" whose feel approximates the sweet yet firm hostel mattress. I picked the nearest delivery window which was two days out, paid and it arrived as promised.

Meanwhile all of the locals and even some of the immigrants keep recommending "Mercado Libre", a sort of Argentine Amazon, as the place to shop for everything. How a purchase on Mercado Libre works is:

  1. You search for whatever you are looking for
  2. You keep searching for that thing except from a seller willing to identify themselves as other than "Mercado Libre Platinum Seller"
  3. You have to ask the seller if they actually have the item advertised as "in stock" in their stock before you begin the process of buying. Naturally at this stage all of the questions about whether the item is in stock go into the public section of the listing for questions about the item. This of course buries any questions and answers about the actual item.
  4. Should you make it this far you will discover despite numerous payment options advertised the only one that can actually be made to work is… printing out an invoice and taking it to the Abitab to stand in line and pay it…
  5. You put on your pants, go for a walk, and reflect on the failure to replicate Northern online commerce while you visit actual stores and talk to people.
  6. You use the prices mystery vendors posted for items on Mercado Libre for leverage with sales people to mixed results.

Spending time in the apartment has yeilded far more pleasant surprises than unpleasant ones. The floor I though was wood looking appears to be wood. The shelf next to the bidet and within arms reach of the toilet is a good place to stash more toilet paper. Peeling off the outlet covers revealed the walls are concrete, and with a north facing balcony the winter sun provides substantial daytime heat while the whole place is surprisingly well insulated by North and South American standards. With a second sleepable surface this habitation module should provide servicable accomodation for the next visitor to the Space Station.

I still need to find and install a 20-30 liter water heater in the designated cabinet while anchoring it to the wall,2 but I still have the hostel bathrooms until July 1st. The Cowork where I rent a desk still has the bathroom with the first hot shower I used in Uruguay.

Life goes on, the Uruguayos and their rituals still piss me off, but it bothers me less than it did in the February through May stretch.

  1. Fiber internet to come la semana que viene… This is the painful wait preventing a substantial increase in the productive number of hours per day.  

  2. Probably a ~170 USD expenditure being delayed while I read manuals and contemplate what the best anchor is in light of the medium density fiberboard sitting in front of the concrete.  

Back To The Fat Accountancy Discussion

Continuing from the last post, the fat account is the sum total of all value personally accessible to me which has not explicitedly been committed committed to the enterprise. At a time when the naive Bingo who had never left the reservation thought he could get off the plane in early December and bring the republic online before Christmas, end of the month at the latest, and start bringing in revenue… It made all the naive sense in the world to charge food,1 Spanish lessons,2 skirt chasing, etc to the fat waiting for revenue to outrun expenses.

Then reality hits. All of sudden its February, just got online still no revenue from which to draw a salary, you're posting pictures and the manager you have never met notices you have lost weight and offers a per diem. Sure, by the middle of the month everything's blown up and by the end of month things have come together again. Not where I expected when I got off the plane, but not in a bad position.

For having expended the fat I have acquired the foundations for building a life outside the wire. And then there's the education. Yesterday I got to deploy the magic words "… por efectivo" for savings over the firm's catalogue prices. I can inject commentary about mis huevos into conversations. I also have had a number of conversations with people whose only impression of the empire is… Miami… through second and third hand reports. I get to answer the question of where I live with the name of my hostel rather than the place I happen to have came from. Sure, my clothes are still looser, no point replenishing the literal fat too aggressively while the metaphorical fat sits leaner. For the return on investment, this expendature of fat a much better deal than US college was in both time and money.

Thankfully my fellows in the Republic are Republican enough to birth Pizarro, and I am still in Montevideo as history has actually flown this past month instead of in Illinois as it could have flown.

  1. The first week or so while I was still learning pesos are real money hurt a bit more on this line item than time after adjusting to pesos as money  

  2. 300 pesos and hour over three 1.5 hour lessons a week for 1500 pesos weekly or ~53.5 US Dosiedoes weekly  

Where are those Baseball BitBets now? Oh, some are still open!

Last week we covered how well the large bets on BitBet get to see money move as change the odds change with greater information. This week with the major league regular season nearly complete let's examine what is happening with the baseball bets. Bets that don't connect directly to financial outcomes. I'll start with a postmortem of ones that have run their course and end by highlight ones that still have life and opportunity. Continue reading

The Newest Biggest: Or the value of a Backstop

I've covered large Bitcoin Bets before, but now there is a new largest Bet in the space in an absolute sense. With a pool of 2816.69 BTC the bet that Bitcoin surpasses Berkshire as an investment went from being the bet in Bitcoin which had seen the most action to also being the one with the most money. And the resolution of the bet is still roughly six months out. As the news reported, this is the equivalent of well over a million dollars, even if Bitcoin keeps crashing. For perspective less than a year ago it would have been well over three million, and within less than two years ago it wouldn't have been enough to buy a new pickup truck. Continue reading

A Reversal of Odds

a chart explanation below

From the bet Bitcoin to Break $10,000 which closes to new bets on November 19th, 2014 and resolves 10 days later on the 29th of November. When this bet opened on November 30th, 2013 nearly 100 BTC was bet the same day at odds of roughly 3:2 in favor. Now that time has passed and the window for BTC to break the $10,000 price point within the bets window has shrank and the odds have corrected, to the tune of raising the pool of BTC bet to 812.29 BTC.

700 BTC laid down simply to correct the odds.

Record Large Public Bitcoin Bet Reached

A bet on whether Bitcoin outperforms Berkshire Hathaway on has now become the record largest public Bitcoin denominated bet in terms of the number of bets placed. As of publishing 162 bets have been placed on this proposition. In terms of absolute value wagered this bet is still dwarfed by two bets on the same platform which were Bitcoin difficulty at or above 2B before Feb 2014 1886.91 BTC wagered1 and BFL will deliver ASIC devices before March 1st (2013) 1689.81 BTC wagered.2 This bet is scheduled to resolve on March 16th, 2015 with wagering open through February 15th, 2015.

  1. The largest ever in Bitcoin and in the equivalent dollar value denominated in Bitcoin.  

  2. Bitcoin was worth much less at the time.