Saturday, March 25, 2017


I've learned a fair amount about watches I can't afford: mostly made in Switzerland, although not in every case; and mostly selling for over $1000, although it may be that recently, increased competition by a huge number of new brands, most of them Swiss too, is driving down the cost of what you can legitimately call a top-end item. Or perhaps that is not the case, and all of these watches which have caught my eye recently and which sell for 3 figures -- still out of my price range -- are not really in the same class with the other stuff. I'm still learning.

If you want an example of a good watch in my price range: this is my Seiko 5:

There are many others like it but this one is mine. While one may not actually be able to call it a luxury watch, still, it, and by "it" I mean the particular Seiko 5 which I own, the one in these pictures, which cost me around $55 including tax, may just be the very coolest watch in the world. I love my Seiko 5.

I've learned that if I click on "suggested posts" on Facebook (ads which are positioned to make them look as if they were actual posts written by people), I will get to see more "suggested posts" of the same sort.

I used to comment on some of these "suggested posts" which advertise fine watches, and click on the links, taking me to ads from Omega or Jaeger-Lecoultre or whom have you. But lately I've gotten aggravated by many of the comments from other Facebook users: seems sometimes like most of the comments are either asking how much the item in the ad costs (If you can't find that out for yourself with 2 mouse clicks or so, it's probably not for sale) or complaining about how much the item costs. It's really getting old. I'm hoping that I'll still get these "suggested posts" from makers of fine watches if I just click on the ads and ignore the comments altogether. Maybe I'll get better "suggested posts," because the watchmakers will respect me for ignoring all of the comments.

Right now, both the 2017 Leipzig Book Fair and Baselworld 2017 are happening. The Leipzig Book Fair is one of the world's premier trade gatherings for book publishers; Baselworld is the main trade show or trade fair for Swiss (and other) watches. I've been interested in the Leipzig Book Fair since before 1990 when it was overshadowed by the Frankfurt book Fair. This is the first time that I've been aware of a Baselworld while it is actually happening.

Surely it's just a coincidence that the Leipzig book Fair and Baselworld are happening at the same time? They're not INTENTIONALLY keeping literati and watch snobs separate, are they?

I don't think I've ever been in a trade show except for an auto show or two when I was a small child, in a time when metal-flake paint was new and exotic.

I suppose it's just possible, if I continue to learn more and more about watches, and if I manage to write about what I learn in a less-than-utterly-senseless way, that I may one day actually attend Baselworld as the official, paid and expense-accounted correspondent and official watch snob of Cosmopolitan or the Detroit Free Press or Hot Rod or some other fine publication. Stranger things have happened -- to me personally. Maybe I shall become the first official Baselworld correspondent of the Bryn Mawr Classical Review.

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