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Breaking Bad (With Glitter)

January 21, 2015

Here’s what happened when one entrepreneur recently decided to turn those annoying little decorations into a mean-spirited business.

GlitterGlitter is a lot like sand: pretty and sparkly, but it gets all over the place. Who among us hasn’t found themselves picking a tiny bit of glitter off a cheek at one point or another, especially during the holidays when it’s added to everything from decorations to greeting cards?

A single piece of glitter can be irritating, which means that a whole bunch of it can be really, really irritating. In recent years, “glitterbombing,” which involves throwing a handful of glitter at someone, has become a way for protesters to humiliate celebrities and others at public events. This is one of the reasons why 22-yea- old Australian entrepreneur Matthew Carpenter started Ship Your Enemies Glitter. For a small fee, Carpenter ships to the enemy of your choice an unassuming envelope filled with glitter, packed to ensure that it’ll make a huge mess the second it’s opened.

Within four days of the website’s debut, Carpenter was slammed with orders from every corner of the globe. He’d completely underestimated his customer base. After receiving 2.5 million hits on the site and a mention on The Tonight Show, Carpenter pulled the plug. “Please stop buying this horrible glitter product,” Carpenter told his customers. “I’m sick of dealing with it.”

Carpenter has clearly created a bedazzled monster. While he may not have the resources to deal with a potentially lucrative (and totally cruel) enterprise, that doesn’t mean that he isn’t willing to cash in on it. The young entrepreneur decided to put his business up for sale on the auction website Flippa. As of this writing, it’s received 338 bids, the latest of which is for $70,800.

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