Saturday, May 3, 2008

Men's Watches

In case you're wondering, I do take requests. I may take a few weeks to get around to it, but if you ask for some men's watches then I will find you some men's watches.

Personally, I'm a huge fan of digital watches. I've worn them for so long that I've basically forgotten how to read the hands of an analog clock-- well, I know how to do it, but I'm usually too lazy to sit and figure out what numbers the hands are pointing to and what that means. Digital watches will tell you the time instantaneously, and to the very second. Plus, I'm a big fan of the light-up display, timers, alarms, and other gadgets that are on most digital watches.

From Timex, this Ironman Triathlon 30-Lap watch, $50, is a perfectly basic sporty watch. You can wear it to the gym, don't have to take it off when you shower, and the dark grey colors won't attract any negative attention. But it's pretty boring, right?

The Ironman Triathlon 50-Lap Sleek watch, $70, upgrades the same essential features with a face that reminds me of a superhero costume. Is costume the right word? Should I say uniform? I need to brush up on all my superhero terminology before I go see Iron Man, The Dark Knight, The Incredible Hulk, and The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (their superpowers are in a pair of magical jeans!).

The non-sleek Ironman Triathlon 50-Lap (Timex isn't very good at naming their watches), $80, looks pretty standard, if a little reminiscent of a tank, until you see that it has a pair of hands on top of the digital display. That's so ridiculously pointless and stupid that I can't help but love it! I guess part of the reasoning is that you can set them to different time zones, if, for instance, you do a lot of business with people in Japan and find addition too complicated. Sidenote: I've always been fascinated by how all the watches sold on the Timex website are set to the same date and time. I like to think that there was a team of designers spending years debating which time is most aesthetically pleasing and therefore more likely to sell watches.

My last digital watch, from Kenneth Cole, definitely has analog envy. It could be good, though, because from a distance you won't be able to tell this is a digital watch. I also like the band (leather with nylon inserts), which I think would make this more fitting than the plastic watches for more formal occasions, and yet still make it comfortable enough for everyday wear and maybe even working out. The Stop Me Now watch (see, KC is better with names) is $95.

Alright, so although I think digital watches are the best invention ever, let's be honest: if you want to be thought of as a man of taste, class and sophistication, you have to wear an analog. Digitals are for guys, analogs are for men. Do you think James Bond wore a digital watch? No, he wore an analog that also had some sort of laser designed to undress women (sorry, I couldn't find that exact watch so you'll have to undress women the old-fashioned way, with your teeth).

I feel that I should say a few words about price. I don't think that, as a college student, you need to spend hundreds of dollars on a watch. You don't need Swiss-engineered precision or a ruby encrusted face or anything platinum, do you? Sure, it'd be a great to have a watch that'll last your entire lifetime, but there's a good chance that the watch you love at 21 isn't going to be the watch you love at 41. So I say, don't spend more than $200 at the very most, and save the super luxe watch for the future. That way, you can either a) buy it for yourself when you get that big raise and corner office, or b) let your rather uncreative fiancee buy it for you as a wedding present, with something like "I'm yours for all time," or "Our love is timeless," or "Every minute spend together is heaven" engraved on the back.

The Dress Watch with Bracelet Strap, $60, looks a lot more expensive than it is. I love the navy blue face against the stainless steel frame and band-- it says, "I'm serious, but I'm not boring. I'll finish these PTS reports for you, but then we're going to go out for happy hour. I may also be engaging in some light embezzlement, but you don't need to worry about it."

At first, the only reason I picked this watch was because the green color reminded me of how, yesterday, I saw someone waiting at the bus stop wearing a green sweatshirt with the hood up, and I thought it was Tim so I started to wave, and then realized it was actually a girl. But beyond the potential for Tim and that girl to match their watch to their hoodies, I think the Expedition Rugged Field watch, $70, is a very young, outdoors-y take on what could be a serious watch. The white hands on the dark green face, the steel frame with leather strap-- I find the unexpected combinations really fun. And if you're still not convinced, according to Timex, extreme outdoor adventurists like Conrad Anker wears this type of watch! The drawback, though, is that you really can't pull this sort of watch off when you're older than 25 or 26. If you work at Google or Pixar, maybe, but if you work in a law office than you're going to need to ditch the green watch.

I don't know whether I actually like this watch, but I felt it was necessary to include a rectangular faced watch. From Kenneth Cole, the Croc-Embossed Leather Strap Watch, $85, is sort of pleasing in its simplicity. I don't like watches without numbers, though; the worst fucking watches in the world are the super-minimalist ones without any notches at all, so if someone asks what time it is you have to say, "Well, it's some time between 3:15 or 3:30. Or maybe it's 4:20. I'm not really sure. Let me check my cell phone."

This Fossil Multifunction Sport watch, $95, is kind of intimidatingly monochromatic. All that silver-- it's a little much, but you'll never had any problems matching it (unless you wear a lot of gold chains).

I'm in love with the partially exposed inner clockworks on the Multifunction Twist watch, $115, also from Fossil. Sure, you could argue that all the different dials and hands make this watch a bit confusing to read, but it looks so cool! It's so intricately crafted, in sort of an old-fashioned way. I also like the understated brown leather band; it's very unpretentious.

But add a few inches to that band, and it becomes a rather pretentious wrist cuff. But still, this Diesel Leather Band Watch, $120, does well with its trendiness. The oversized steel face frame is very attention grabbing, and I like dark navy face as well. I think this could be a good watch for going out on weekends, when you want to look good but not like you're trying too hard.

Or, if you like the look of the cuff but don't want to commit to it full time, you can get the GUESS Men's Copper Dial Interchangeable Bracelet Watch Box Set, $95.00. I think this is genius (I'm a fan of all reversible or convertible or otherwise changeable clothing or accessories, because then I can justify spending more money on it). You can wear the silver band to work, then switch the face into the leather cuff for after hours. And the rectangular face is so classic that it'll look good with either band.

The Kenneth Cole Just a Second watch, $149.99, is somehow both a bit feminine and a bit grandfatherly. But those qualities are exactly what I always look for in potential hook-ups, so I think this watch is sweet. The multi-colored numbers and notches are especially interesting.

The Fossil White Twist watch, $125, is pretty cool with the blue accents on the silver, but let's take a closer look at those smaller dials. Is that right dial maybe supposed to be military time, with the 24 hour clock? And maybe the big middle dial is for the day of the month, although I don't know how that'll work out in months with 31 or 28 days. The left dial, though, is a mystery. Could it be a compass bearings? No wait, I just realized that the second number was 15, not 75, so that dial has to be counting seconds, minutes, or hours. But... isn't that what the main dial is for? Is this a backup watch inside your watch? So odd.

I won't lie, online shopping for watches is not that exciting. It's not as bad as shopping for men's jackets, but it's still rather a snore. But occasionally I'll come across a watch so ugly that it makes me remember why the internet is the best invention ever.

Inspired, I guess, by Jerry Garcia, this Coppertone Printed Dial Watch, $35.99, is undeniably fugly from the first glance. But, if you can stomach it, look a little closer.

Faces! Little creepy faces of the damned on your watch!


Andrea Winslet said...

Favorite things about this post:

1. The green watch. Love it!
2. James Bond watch tangent.

Tim said...

Well done! I've got some thinking to do - and all that talk about green hoodies and watches makes it awfully tempting ... thanks for the post!