Dan Bilzerian — some may know him as the millionaire playboy poker player and some may know him as an "almost" ex-Navy Seal. Either way I've been having a hard time finding anyone who hasn’t heard the name. At the very least you may receive an “Oh, you mean the Instagram guy?” when asking who he is. If for whatever reason you don’t know who he is then hopefully this article can help you out.
Bilzerian gathered his vast majority of wealth (around $100 million) from his high stakes poker playing and inheriting it from his infamous father, Paul Bilzerian who worked on Wall Street. His father was a Vietnam veteran with nine guilty accounts of tax and stock fraud when Dan was a child.
However, he is more than the mere trust fund son and gambler. His claim to fame was not infamous in the way his father’s was. Rather than lawsuits against the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and American government, everyone (including myself) knows Bilzerian from his racy Instagram account. The sensation posts pictures of porn stars, models, guns, cars, and occasionally his cat (sometimes a combination).
The absurdness of each post leaves followers never knowing what to expect next. Each post seems as though it could be a poster on an average teenager's bedroom wall. People stop to look and either think of the images as offensive, objectifying, or awesome. There is an old saying that "any publicity is good publicity." As I do not personally know Bilzerian I can objectively say that it doesn’t appear to matter what people think of him. As a matter of fact, each picture he posts seems to send the message he doesn't care about anything at all.
Bilzerian dives into a variety of common questions people have about him in this interview:
"If you look at poker like a business, I'm f***** Bill Gates." Having won nearly $50 million through his poker career, I suppose we can hold this as somewhat true.
Bilzerian’s Instagram account and attitude, to me, is a symbol of freedom, living life to the fullest and doing what you want. An Instagram account typically shows followers what kind of person you are, and is an extension of you as a person. Everyone has goals and dreams and I think that Bilzerian is just expressing how he likes to live simply because he can. What we all strive for will undoubtedly be different and once people achieve their goals they will share their story. Bilzerian does this in an unorthodox way and he is in the position to leave the world helpless in stopping him, forcing them to sit back and watch.
Bilzerian is showing people exactly who he is. His pictures of lavish parties at the Playboy Mansion show he is someone who just likes to have a good time, who doesn’t? His shots of piles of money show off his wealth. Money is merely an object to him. I see Bilzerian as a symbol to show people that they can express themselves how they want and to not think anything about what people say.
As ridiculous as Bilzerian and his antics are, from the viewpoint of someone with a more wild side, they can be amusing. For everyone else they may seem irresponsible and offensive. I guess you can’t please everyone, but you can leave them with a lesson. If you're not yourself then who the hell are you? Express yourself how you want despite the opinion of others.