Amy Hooked Me Up with a New Watch This Christmas
The above pic is of my current watch collection. I’m a big fan of wristwatches and have been since I befriended a man named Ivano in the middle to late ’90s. He actually gifted me the Ole Mathiesen that’s in the pic—top row, farthest left. He was a big watch aficionado and had several desirable watches that included the brands Breitling, Montblanc, Panerai, and Zenith. Those luxury brands are far out of reach for me; but I do have a number of nice watches, most of them gifted to me by Amy. Truth-be-told, all of them were given to me except for the G-Shock, which I wrote about previously.
If you have a chance, you should take a look at (and subscribe to) the blogs Worn & Wound and A Blog to Watch. They are blogs devoted to everything about wristwatches… regardless of price point or brand prestige. I read them with some frequency in order to keep abreast of what’s going on in the watch world. I guess it’s become a kind of hobby over the years. Guys can’t really wear jewelry and a wristwatch is a way of defining one’s style and presenting a kind of outward statement. I guess guys can and do wear jewelry, but I don’t pull it off very well. So I’ll stick to wristwatches and use them both as a tool and as a fashion statement. 😉
Amy bought me the Victorinox INOX last year for Christmas and this year she bought me the Seiko Prospex “Samurai.”
The Seiko “Samurai” first made its appearance in 2004 and was quickly and aptly named after its hands, giving the vague appearance of a samurai sword.
I’ve wanted one of these for a long while; ever since seeing a picture of it on a Pinterest board seemingly eons ago. She bought me my very first automatic movement watch in 1999. It’s the Victorinox Swiss Army 1884 Officer’s Automatic, pictured above (bottom, farthest left). It has taken a hell of a beating in the last 18 years. It’s been repaired twice and is probably on its seventh or eighth wrist band. It’s not in production any longer and hasn’t been for a very long time.
She really outdoes herself in finding these watches. I mean the Samurai wasn’t hard to find, but a couple of the others were probably very difficult—namely the Citizen BJ7010-16F and the Ronin Rotomatic MKII. The Citizen watch is an Asia-only watch and she probably had to go through a gray market dealer in New York City to get it. 😦 The Ronin watch company doesn’t even exist any longer. And when they did exist, they only sold via email communication and built watches in very small runs. I can only imagine how difficult it was for her to find these two watches with having no more than a picture I probably posted to a now defunct Pinterest board.
Be VERY careful buying grey in NYC, that means you’re in the diamond district and those people will chew you up and spit you out if you don’t know what you’re doing. I would stick to the forums and buy from a trusted seller.
I guess, getting back around to my title, a watch can be the outward statement a man makes about who he is as a person. For example, when I wear an INOX watch with a Nato strap, I’m trying to convey ruggedness and sturdiness. When wearing the Rotomatic, I guess I’m trying to relay uniqueness. If someone were to ask me about my Rotomatic, I would probably start off with it being a gift from Amy, how it was made by a small batch watch company that no longer exists, and something about the movement.
Watches can telegraph a lot about a man. There is even an article about watches the various Presidents of the United States have owned. President Clinton frequently wore Timex Ironman sport timepieces in the 90s, mostly because he was a runner. Now I think I read somewhere that he owns several Shinola Watches. Both Obama and Trump have been photographed wearing several watches, but I won’t go into those here.
There are still a few watches I want to round out my collection…
- Shinola Runwell 41mm (overpriced for what they are)
- Rolex Submariner 40mm (way too expensive for my wallet)
- Tudor Heritage Black Bay 41mm (poor man’s Rolex)
- Hamilton Khaki Automatic Field 38mm
- Bulova Accutron Spaceview 214 (vintage)
- Citizen NB0070-57E “Grand Touring” 44mm (poor man’s Panerai)
This list is incomplete and I’m sure it’ll change over time, as I discover new and vintage watches that will eclipse some of the ones listed.
As you can probably tell, I love watches. I’ve owned quite a few inexpensive to mid-range pieces over the years. I gave a few away to my son a while back when pairing my collection down and sold a few on eBay. I gave my kid a Seiko Solar “Pepsi” bezel diver and a first generation Apple Watch. I hope he’s getting some use out of them. At some point I think he’ll start to develop his own watch style; until then, he can take some of my cast offs.
You may not find watches very interesting, but maybe after reading this you’ll start to notice what a man wears on his wrist and possibly ask him about his motivations behind his timepiece. Maybe there’ll be a story or maybe he’s mundane and just picked it up because it tells time. Who knows? But I hope you’ll eventually find a compelling story out there in the wild and take an interest in timepieces. Remember, even the seemingly silliest Swatch watch can be an interesting conversation starter.