Friday, 28 August 2015

Watch A Surprise

I like wristwatches ... specifically vintage mechanical or 'hand driven' (wind up in UK) men's wristwatches, although any unusual watch attracts my interest, as illustrated below. I am always on the look out for 'that find', the lucky spot at a car boot sale, whereby I find a real minter, a hardly worn, classic men's wind-up, that's a real treasure. As you might have guessed, I am still awaiting that find .... but I live in hope.

Not that I haven't had any luck at all .... I have a bedroom drawer full of these wristwatches, which includes many vintage wind-ups, and included in this collection is my vintage 1970's boys/mens wind-up Timex, which I purchased for the princely sum of £10.00 ($15.00), and which was nearly mint. It was a great find, and I have a few other interesting finds from Eastern Europe, but just not that vintage Rolex, or whatever, that I daydream about.

'What's the attraction?' I hear you ask, after all they are not as accurate as quartz watches, and indeed many, especially the older 'vintage' wrist watches sold on auction sites or at car boot sale, are only good for a day or so, without the need for rewinding, and even then, often lose time during the day.

I can't really explain it, but the best I can do is to describe it as a touch of the past. Older watches (not the common Timex's etc which were factory made), were often hand made, or finished. They were adjusted and balanced by a craftsman and not by a factory.

My Latest Wristwatch Is Actually Not A Wind-up ...

This is an attraction to me, in a world in which 'smart watches' are now the latest trend, which threatens to finish off the craftsman's wristwatch, and I guess they are a link back to a pre-digital, pre-computerised, and more certain world .... in fact the one I was born into. A world which is fast passing away, and will, along with all my generation have disappeared in the next 30 years or so.

Now don't get me wrong, I like much of the modern worlds technology and lifestyle: Personal Computers, Mobile and Smart Phones, Reliable Cars, Convenience Foods, Better Healthcare, Giant Supermarkets etc .... bring em on! I am even looking forward eagerly to the forthcoming immersive computer games (via holo-headsets), which will seem as much like Western magic to me, as all our inventions have done to the third world over the past 150 years or so.

And yet at some level, I hanker for a more certain existence, where events are not 'Breaking News 24/7', and at some level, the craftsmanship of wind-up wristwatches represent this to me. I doubt I am alone in this, but its manifestation can be very different in each person, and I suspect that much of the psychoses in the world are caused by the frantic and ever changing society in which we in the West have enveloped ourselves.

I don't know if people realize how much of a wonder the mechanical wristwatch was and is .... it was a real technological breakthrough. However I am not the only person with a love of wristwatches.

Dimitry Peskov, spokesman to Vladimir Putin really likes a good wristwatch ... the 50 yr old (published salary $100,00 pa), has just married a former Olympic Ice Dancer, Tatiana Navka and apparently celebrated the engagement by treating himself to a $600,000 18-carat gold Richard Mille wristwatch. When questioned how he could afford such a beauty, he has claimed that it was a wedding present from his wife, however as he was spotted wearing it many months ago. He now refuses to respond to questions on the subject, despite the on-line derision the matter has prompted.

Dmitry Peskov's Watch Is A One ... Perhaps Too Good?

Another silly boy is Abu-bakr Al-Baghdadi, the leader of the 'Islamic State' state thugs. While on a visit to a mosque in the occupied Iraqi city of Mosul, he sported what appeared to be a Rolex or Omega Seamaster on his wrist. No doubt the original owner has been murdered.

Abu-bakr Al-Baghdadi Posh Wristwatch Owner
So the love of a good wristwatch infects both the famous, and the infamous.


  1. While Daesh are destroying examples of what they consider idolatry, important pieces of great archaeological and historical importance, Abu-bakr Al-Baghdadi is indulging in the worship of a cult object. If only owning such a nice watch could teach him how to tell the time.

    1. There are many cult objects in a materialistic world ... from watches, to cars. Mankind have ever worshipped Mammon, despite the different cloaks of piety they wrap that worship in.


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