Martin Shkreli—the man with the world's most punchable face—will indeed let you punch his face. The catch is you have to pay to do it. Even more shocking, given Shkreli's public profile as a symbol of greed in the pharmaceutical industry, it appears he's presenting the opportunity for a charitable reason.
Shkreli originally launched the auction to "slap or punch" his smirking face on eBay and, as the Wall Street Journal notes, he had plenty of bidding. Bids had climbed to in excess of $10,000, then eBay yanked the listing.
Shkreli regrouped, and the supposed reason for the invitation to abuse him became clear:
Mr. Shkreli didn’t offer a clear explanation on Twitter for why the auction had been removed, but asked his followers for a recommendation for a website where he could verify bidders. Later Tuesday, he linked to a crowdfunding charity site that he said was for his friend’s son, claiming that anyone who donates would be “entered into a raffle to slap/punch me. The # of dollars you donate is the # of tickets you get.”
Shkreli explained in tweets why he was willing to help his friend's child.
It's pretty easy to be suspicious of anything that looks like altruism from Martin Shkreli. He went from managing hedge funds to CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals, where he immediately hiked the price of an AIDS drug from $13.50 to $750 a pill.
Then, in what was a satisfying turnaround at the time, Shkreli was arrested for securities fraud and lost his job. He has denied the charges.
In the meantime Shkreli has become a social media star, frequently livestreaming rants and answers to questions from viewers. None of this adds up to a portrait of a guy who has suddenly discovered he has a heart, even where the child of a friend who recently passed away is concerned.
While he didn't give the WSJ any further comment, Shkreli has continued to push the auction on his Twitter feed. Anyone so inclined can click the link in this tweet:
While Shkreli proposed the alternative of having dinner with him, we're pretty sure the lure of going upside his head is just too strong.
Still, we'll believe it when we see the black eye or busted tooth.