BCM reFIREment Fund

person holding leafed plant

Upending the FIRE game through DeFi stablecoin yield farming

Decentralized finance, or DeFi, is a broad term that refers to projects on Ethereum and other smart contract platforms that are rebuilding the world’s financial infrastructure on the blockchain. While it is certainly risky, the rewards are currently beyond anything available within traditional finance. Just look at your “savings” account. The amount of yield currently available among DeFi projects can put financial independence within reach for many people. Here, I take a deep dive on how I positioned myself for reFIREment, and allocated an emergency fund that will hopefully pay for itself and allow me to live my dreams.

I won’t get into the details of fiat on-ramps or using the Ethereum network, nor do I endorse blindly following my any of my positions. Black swan exploits and rug-pulls are still a huge risk, and my purpose here is to discuss the analysis and decision-making process that I went through in order to mitigate some of that risk. I hope you find it useful.

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The weather is warming, just into the upper thirties, but that’s enough to melt the snow which has been on the ground for the past few days. I didn’t feel like I needed my snow gear leaving the house this morning, and it might warm up enough for me to actually take a run later. I’m overdue.

Younger crawled in the bed in the middle of the night and woke me up. I actually dreamed, but I was awake and restless around four this morning and I didn’t want to get out of bed when the alarm turned on. Missus was sleeping in because she took leave for an appointment her mom has, so I wound up taking in Elder, and getting in a fight with her.

I don’t know if I got on her because I was cranky from lack of sleep or if there’s some deeper psychological issue at play related to my upbringing. I just don’t want to raise a child who’s spoiled and entitled, and doesn’t know how to overcome adversity. I feel like whenever I tell her that things are going to go the way she wants that I have to deal with a bunch of whining and complaining. I had a similar spat with Younger this morning about her laundry, which has been sitting in a basket, unfolded, for several days now.

I told her that she needed to fold it before she goes out and plays with her friend when she gets home from school. But that’ll take forever! No, it won’t, I bet you can have the whole thing done in ten minutes. But I don’t know how to fold it. Yes you do, you know how to fold underwear and pants and shorts. Why don’t you fold it and put it on my bed and I’ll put it away when I get home? And so on.

I forced myself to meditate, but my mind wandered so much. There’s a lot to do for work, as work now encompasses playing video games, thinking about video games, designing video games, and so on. One of my co-workers said that they want specialization, but my specialization is being overly broad with various systems.

I have been going back to some video game design work, researching various frameworks and ways of designing systems, lots and lots of ECS systems. The more I learn about them the less I think they’re suited for the type of architecture that I’m envisioning. I spend more time thinking about it than actually coding. Looking at existing games and figuring out how I would reverse engineer them; researching various frameworks to see how they operate: Unreal, Unity, various Rust, C++ and Python systems, trying to figure out which one fits our use case best.

I’ve been having lots of discussions at work about a unified framework, a cookbook of design decisions between Unreal, our web3, and Solana programs. Part of it feels like imposter syndrome because I’m talking to developers who are way more knowledgeable than I am.


I was in a foul mood when I woke up this morning. I really did a number on myself this weekend. Saturday the neighbor kids were over, I wound up playing City of Iron with Elder and the older T. kid. Didn’t finish the game because I made an early mistake that changed the direction of the game so much that we called it a day. Missus and I spent some time together, then I stayed up till the wee hours binge watching Ozark. I slept on the couch so as not to disturb anyone.

Sunday was a do-nothing day. We still had several inches of snow on the ground, but I left my snow boots over at my FIL’s house, and had already gotten my fill with the girls on Saturday. I watched a couple more episodes of Ozark before lunch. I was really tired by mid-afternoon. About all I did was watch Bluey with younger, horseplay a bit. Missus made dinner, I watched Eternals before putting them to bed.

I was exhausted. I watched a video on my iPad then passed out. I’d say I slept like a dead man, but I woke up several times. Elder had another accident, which woke me up, and Younger was in the bed, but we didn’t fight too much, thankfully. I guess she was attached to Missus.

I got them both to school, but I wasn’t very patient while I was getting them ready. The whole house is a wreck, snow gear and socks — my god, the socks — everywhere. On the way out from Younger’s school we passed a homeless person pushing a shopping cart full of their belongings down the main boulevard. The cart was full, the guy had a backpack on and another bag in their hand that they were hold while trying to clear some obstacle from under one of the wheels. It was twenty-eight degrees out. “There but for the grace of God”…

BTC and ETH took another elevator down today. That’s another reason why I was foul. I haven’t looked at my Perp positions two weeks in a row. I needed to meditate, then I took a look. The ETH positions are mostly gone, about $30k liquidated. My BTC ones are mostly underwater, but we’d have to go sub-thirties to liquidate them.

I thought I was so clever, but I got too aggressive, too greedy, and Mr. Market has punished me for it.

I’m not so foul a mood now. Meditation helped, and turning toward the problem instead of away helped as well. Or it might be the coffee.

I’ve got my priorities for this morning, so it’s time to get to work.

Snow day!

The price of crypto continues to plummet with the temperatures here. I woke up to a good three inches of snow on the ground, and the kids rustling to get ready to go outside. I pulled myself out of bed to make sure they were properly attired, and sent them out. I made the mistake of trying to meditate. I was interrupted several times, and lost my temper at the kids for not following my instructions to keep the doors closed and not come in covered in snow.

I just shoveled the drive and sidewalk, gave my shovel to D., who did not have one.

I’m scared to sit down at the upstairs computer. Not really, though. I’m assuming that the cash I put in Perp.fi is lost. A tax write off. It’s not though, the BTC should be safe; I still don’t think we’ll see sub-thirty BTC. I was obviously too aggressive with my ETH longs, and am pretty sure the overnight wick down took me out, at least partially.

I’m in the mood for some more Entity-Component-System work. I was reading on my iPad last night and looking at Rust-based gaming frameworks. I think it would be interesting if the Star Atlas team could come up with a component framework for Solana. It’s going to be interesting to see if we can come up with something that interact with the FLEET program. I might even try mocking up some of the mining and crafting systems as an exercise.

Partially Liquidated

Today’s been a bit of a difficult day. Most of it stems from not getting good sleep last night. I was up playing video games and woke up with the girls enjoying their morning home from school. They both had Zoom class this morning, and I had to do tech support for Younger several times during the day.

I went straight into coding. I actually managed to get my tests done and finished the OpenSea Python script that I was working on. I managed to do about an hour of demo with a couple guys on the team, showing them how I do TDD. It was interesting. I wound up skipping an early meeting to finish it, but it had to be done.

Later in the day the PMs met and went over our projects and roster. It was very difficult for me because the neighbors were over, and I wound up kicking all the kids out at one point for being too loud and arguing.

I also talked to our Solana devs about this framework idea that’s been floating around in my head. I’ve been looking at the Machinations framework, and that got me looking at Decentraland’s SDK, even the Unreal Engine docs. Yesterday I asked if we were still doing object oriented programming, and someone mentioned data-driven design, which I’d never really read up on, so I actually spent some time watching some videos on it earlier today, and that led me to the idea of entity-component systems, which is basically the term for what I’ve been trying to describe.

And the real kicker today was the complete dump in the crypto markets. To think that I was up $100k three months ago, and now I’m down almost 40. I got partially liquidated, and I don’t think the worst is over. The Fed is unable to save the markets, Netflix sold off 20% and most of the S&P looks down about 5%. BTC and ETH just completely dumped, and it almost led to a massive liquidation cascade. My BTC positions should be safe, but I might lose the rest of my ETH positions. And yesterday I just BTFD.

I told Missus it’s a good thing that I’m back at work.

Quick note

Today was the first of to days of scheduled meeting with the SA tech team, and it was fantastic. My favorite was the one about culture. Building a company culture. I’m struck.

The snow is coming down. The ground is mostly wet, but the temperature will remain freezing through the next day and a half. I’ve made three trips to the grocery store in as many days.

I got my new headphones in today. They’re nice. I tried to buy a GPU today after getting an alpha leak on Best Buy product availability. I swear I would have one right now if I had been logged into my account previously, but whatever.

I just had the most wonderful special time with Younger. She was getting ready for bed and was swinging around her bed, singing a song and dancing. She was freestyling. It was so amazing that I had her do it again for Missus, then I spent half an hour with her playing basic chord progressions on the piano. It was so cute.

Snow prep

Oh my what a day. It went pretty well, but I was a bit rushed this morning so here I am writing at eight-thirty at night. Not quite the way I want to end my day. I was productive though.

I wound up taking both the girls into school this morning. That set my schedule back more than it should have. I did my morning meditation, then transplanted my seeds to the plugs that I bought. I was surprised that they were already showing the taproot, but I went ahead and put together my sprouter and light and got them set. I put the setup under my mining rig, behind my desk. I swear I can already see them growing. Once this first batch or two of plants are going, I should be able to get a great start with our vegetable garden, no problem about that at all.

I did some more coding today, working on the most recent Python script. I started putting together some pytest for some good old TDD, which I should have done in the first place. It really forced me to make some design decisions about the program, which I’m honestly ill-prepared to make. I feel like I need to give another read to my design patterns and software architecture books. Imposter syndrome, indeed. We did have some productive conversations at work regarding project managers versus project manager, trying to nail down roles and responsibilities. It’s going to be hard specializing after so many years generalizing, but I’ll run with it today.

I got a text from D. that they’re calling for four to eight inches of snow over the next couple days. I feel so wimpy considering a lot of the Canadian staff are dealing with three feet of snow, so I’ll not complain. Anyways the schools are prepping for not one, but two snow events. They’re closing school two hours early tomorrow, which is actually the milder of the two, but are refraining from making a call about the one on Friday, when we’re expecting most of the snow, and the temperature won’t break twenty-nine degrees the entire day. Yeah right.

Missus had me stock up on beer. I bought so much liquor at the store today they asked me if I wanted a box. Funny thing is I don’t feel like drinking liquor, so I still went to the convenience store to buy beer. I need a budget, indeed.

So I’m done for the day. I want to go play some Tarkov, and still get to bed at a decent hour. I’ll still need to get up at seven to bring Younger into school, so I can’t go crazy yet. Hopefully my new headphones will be here soon, delivery by ten. We’ll see if 7.1 Surround sound improves my game.

Sounds like a plan

Well I feel like I have the day off to a good start. Everyone was on time this morning, Younger got dropped off several minutes before cutoff, but I’d like to drop her off a bit earlier next time. Elder and Missus got out without much trouble, although Elder had a bit of problem following directions. I meditated, and even got a short twenty minute workout in.

My seeds dropped into the water when I touched them, so broke open my sprouting kit. I wound up putting the heated mat on top of the cardboard box under my desk. I moved the seeds to paper towels, trying hard not to mix up the two strains. Last night I installed a grower assist app on my phone, so I’ve got reminders set up to spritz them with water tonight before I go to bed.

I think I have my priorities for today. SAIAdao needs a bit of attention, then I need to work on OpenSea migrations. I got a notification from someone that I messed up their transfer… so I have to deal with more of that. Then we have a dao meeting late in the afternoon, grocery pickup and dinner.

Germination day

Of course I waited until the end of the day so this post will probably be rushed. The truth is that I was very productive today. I did stay up till one last night, but I managed to wake up at a decent hour and started getting stuff done. I meditated, drank my tea, then started doing research on which of my strains I was going to start first.

I had my Power Couple meeting with Missus this morning and we decided on our course of action for the day. I wanted to get outside and clean up the back yard, which Younger and I did, and then we even did the garage, breaking down boxes and cleaning it out for the first time in months. I was really impressed with myself.

I ordered groceries, did some budget stuff, and by that point in the afternoon everyone wanted to lose themselves in their screens, so I did just that.

I wound up doing some more research on the seeds that I have, and decided to go with a couple of autos, Northern Lights and Alaskan Purple. Both should be easy to grow and have a relatively quick yield. It won’t be as much as the photos that I got, but we want a quick turnaround for this first batch, and we shouldn’t be able to kill them.

Today we were off for MLK day, of course. I went out to the grocery store with Younger for some emergency shopping, and we came home and had a quiet night. Back to work tomorrow.

Sunday funday

So I finally broke down and bought a new monitor today. I grabbed an open box deal from Best Buy and got a LG 32″ IPS monitor. It was a hundred dollars off, I got it for four bills. It’s huge, and the games look great on it. The only issue is that I need a VESA mount kit so that I can attach it to the monitor stand for my gaming rig. The old ACER 19″ that I have there attach directly to the mounts, but they have the connectors on the bottom of the bezel, the ones on this LG are on the back, so I need about three inches of space for the cables. I’ve got it sitting on the tray stand right now. Lovely.

I stayed up super late playing Killing Floor 2 with Star Atlas team, finally woke up this morning around 11:30. Woke up and played a round of Tarkov with my brother, then went and grabbed the monitor. Spent all afternoon and this evening checking things out. We played Tarkov for several hours, now the kids are down for bed. It’s almost ten.

I might ping Ed for some FarCry, IDK, maybe I should take it easy tonight. Tomorrow is MLK day, so we’re all off tomorrow. I can’t spend all day playing video games, there’s some things I need to do, including getting some plants started for the grow operation.

Shopping day

So today was fun. Last night was fun also, staying up late to play Killing Floor 2 with several dudes from work. My dad came over today and we went out to a place where they selling farming equipment for people who want to grow their own medicine.

I spent fifteen hundred, got a whole indoor growing setup, everything we need to grow four plants at my dads house. The girl — woman — that helped me out even had several varieties of seeds that she gave me. So the plan is for me to start the seeds at home, then transplant them to my dad’s house after they outgrow the starter tray.

At least that was the plan. Missus is a bit upset about it because it’s not what we had talked about, which didn’t include me having any plants at the house. I’ll figure it out, I’m taking her out on a date in thirty minutes.

I took my dad out too while we were across town. To a brewery/restaurant spot. I needed a bit of hair of the dog. They had a really good smoked chicken drumstick app with some “sweaty”, spicy sauce. My dad and I both went for the steak and eggs. He drank wine, since the place didn’t have Budweiser.

We stopped by Best Buy on our way back so I could check out monitors. The 27 and 32″ curved monitors are very nice. I can’t even imagine how big the 49″ ones are. I’ll probably get two 27s to replace my 22s and one 32 inch to replace the three 19s I have upstairs. I think. I’m tempted to order one right now, and part of me wants to run back over to the BB on our side and grab one. I was actually haggling with the guys over a 32″, but I noticed that it had a scratch on the screen, so we left.

So the neighbors are going to watch the kids, and I’m taking Missus out on a hot date.

Did I mention it was payday yesterday?