If your idea of a good time is watching people dig through trash over the possibility of finding $30, then it's been a great week for you.
Hidden Cash St. Louis is part charity, part social experiment, part game and part social-media craze. Inspired by a uniquely generous real estate developer in California, Hidden Cash St. Louis' organizers hide envelopes of money and tweet clues, drawing hundreds of harried treasure hunters.
"We always watch the news, and unfortunately there's always bad stuff and not enough good stuff," the person/s behind Hidden Cash St. Louis told KMOV's Steve Harris. "So we thought, 'Why don't we take this opportunity to give out some cash and lift people's spirits and stuff?'"
But for anyone paying attention to the frenzied searches for cash, the whole enterprise seems more unsettling than any 5 p.m. news broadcast. Here's what we find so troubling:
1. This can't end well.Almost immediately, the dangerously Black Friday-esque nature of the feverish search for money raised fears about the safety of hidden-cash searchers and the people around them. Even the Hidden Cash St. Louis people are worried:
Location will be given out soon. We just want to make sure we all be SAFE— HiddenCash St. Louis (@hiddencash314) June 2, 2014
Be safe ppl plz so we can keep this going. Next clue in little bit— HiddenCash St. Louis (@hiddencash314) June 3, 2014
BE SAFE DO NOT RUSH PLEASE— HiddenCash St. Louis (@hiddencash314) June 4, 2014
The original hidden-cash dropper, an anonymous millionaire working in real estate in California, had to rethink his drop locations when a search for $200 brought a crowd of at least 500 to a crowded shopping center, resulting in what police called a "traffic nightmare."
Three more reasons why Hidden Cash St. Louis is not good news for the Lou on page two.