Well, this was unexpected.
The Tiger King star has announced that she has launched her own cryptocurrency, appropriately named $CAT which, according to CNN, “allows fans to buy merchandise or online experiences from Baskin’s Big Cat Rescue animal sanctuary in Tampa, Florida, starting at five dollars.”
In a statement posted to the Big Cat Rescue website, Baskin said, “I’m investigating cryptocurrencies because I am concerned about the volume of US dollars that are being printed and distributed with nothing to back them up. I like the idea of putting the power of money in the hands of the people, rather than banks and governments.
“Our new $CAT coin is not a currency for investment but rather is a purr-ency of our fans to show their love for the cats.”
$CAT falls into the category of “alt coin” — a form of cryptocurrency that was developed as an alternative to bitcoin which came into existence in August 2008.
I'm purring like a bobcat rolling in catnip because we just launched $cat on https://t.co/pH2gCNtQGf Rocketing up to #35 out of 117 & thinking of ways to reward those who join our "pride" of big cat lovers! Learn more at https://t.co/FTxA8iVV0V pic.twitter.com/PxFiXJqA5k
— CaroleBaskin (@carole_baskin) May 4, 2021
The Big Cat Rescue owner also revealed plans to get into the seemingly ubiquitous NFT game in the next few weeks, explaining on the website: ‘Future plans include a big cat metaverse for virtual visits with the cats.”
Baskin was one of the eccentric subjects of Netflix’s 2020 smash Tiger King, which examined the life of Joe Exotic. Having had his hopes for a presidential pardon from Donald Trump dashed in January 2021, the former zoo owner is currently serving a 22-year prison sentence for allegedly attempting to hire someone to murder Baskin, in addition to animal abuse charges.
Exotic had previously been featured in Louis Theroux’s BBC documentary America’s Most Dangerous Pets. In light of the Tiger King star’s transgressions, Theroux re-examined his old interviews for his new BBC film Shooting Joe Exotic.
Of the new project, Baskin said “I think Louis Theroux handled the subject with thoughtfulness and a self-reflection that showed his sincere desire to understand. My phone isn’t ringing off the hook with death threats and obscenities so I think BBC viewers may be doing a bit of soul searching as well.”
Who knows? Maybe that soul searching will lead them to the Big Cat Rescue website where they can snap up some of Baskin’s newly minted $CAT currency. As we’ve come to learn from watching Tiger King — stranger things have happened.