Okay, I’m in love with wristwatches again.
For a long time, I didn’t have any fashion anything to speak of. The wild hair colors had to go with “professional life” and “grad school” (at least, the second time around). My wife and my growing waistline cured me of my love for edgy t-shirts. And wristwatches, well, they were too expensive a fashion item once I became a family man.
But with therapy and difficulty and “finding myself” again, the goal of finding “space” once again to attend to my self-presentation and to carve out some space for customizing my appearance, wristwatches have come to the fore. I can’t afford anything “real” in the sense of a Breitling or even, say, a Tag Heuer, but between eBay and makes like Citizen, Orient, and Seiko, I can find a little bit of space to adorn myself.
I feel guilty about this sometimes, but I never even pay close to a fraction of retail (thanks, eBay used item sales!) and also I remember that unlike many others, I have very few other “personal appearance” expenses. I wear a basic ensemble of very “lower middle class” clothes from the likes of Target, Old Navy, and Wal-Mart. I don’t spend any money on skin care products or jewelry of any other kind. I spend basically next to no money on my appearance. So wristwatches can fit the bill, many years after I last paid attention to them.
– Sound budget “automatic” movements (Orient 46943, Seiko 7S26)
– 40mm or greater case diameter
– 10ATM+ water resistance
– Stainless bracelet
– Either mineral crystal or sapphire (not picky)
– Either a very narrow bezel (e.g. Citizen Nighthawk series) or a standard “diver” bezel
Strangely enough, I am not too keen on some things that others are:
– Lots of sub-dials
– Clear homages
– Retrograde complications
– Low-end Swiss/ETA movements
– Anything that says “Swiss” anywhere on it
– Leather or neoprene bracelets
For example, a lot of people have panned something like the Orient Sparta series as having odd complications, no sub-dials, a very utilitarian Japanese movement calibre by Orient (46E40), etc. but I actually like it a lot. The same goes for the Citizen Nighthawk series.
I am trying to limit myself to just a few watches, even given that I am paying just a few pennies on the dollar thanks to eBay and the ability to buy these things used from sellers that don’t care all that much about what they get. But it is nice to like something that I am wearing in some way again, after years of adorning myself in purely utilitarian ways.
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The other major purchase was another Wilsons’ leather jacket. Also didn’t pay retail or it never would have happened.
It’s all about baby steps.