Why no watches?

Watches just ain’t my thing, but I appreciate the interest in kind of a metaway (similarly I don’t indulge very often but find 420 jokes great and songs in praise of weed kind of great.)

So why not watches (for me)

1/ I worry if I wore a watch I’d be checking the time all the time.

I kind of like a more mellow relationship to knowing what time it is. I feel like if I wore a watch I’d be glancing at it too often.

2/ I think a watch with short sleeves looks odd

(I know Shaun thinks this one is absurd 🙂 )

3/ I guess my inner-child balks because it seems too grown up

This might be the biggest and most honest one. A big, metal-y watch and its life-partner “overloaded brown leather wallet bursting with dozens of cards” somehow represents a kind of grown-up masculinity, a kind of accepting of a middle aged responsibility, that isn’t me. To quote Tracy on the Drew Carey show “Ohhho, your inner child pretty much runs the place, huh?”

This view of what a watch “means” is super-subjective, and I recognize in a lot of ways doesn’t speak well of me, but at this point stumbling into my early-mid-40s, it is what it is and I am what I am.

(Oh so my wallet is always some paper/fiber based “mighty wallet” with a custom illustration or carefully chosen bit of artwork on it, very slim and breathable as it rides in my hip pocket, with as few cards as I can get away with.)

Maybe some of it is timing – pretty soon after college graduation (and lets face it school life has a clock in every classroom…) I got a PalmPilot, so was an early adopter of the “clunky rectangular pocket watch” club.


Categories: Watches

6 replies

  1. 1 – I’m not into jewelry but wear a watch for practical matters. If you have a thing about time, the only thing stopping you from digging out your mobile phone (or PDA way back when) is the inconvenience. Unless you’ve tried, I doubt checking the time is going to be a problem, but that’s just my opinion. I’ve worn a watch forever, but nothing fancy. It tells the time. I like to be punctual, mainly so I don’t put other people out. With the Apple watch, I also get the weather, important in Canada, and other handy functions, none of which are fitness related.

    2 – I wear short sleeves all the time and in Canada in the winter, that may seem odd. I do wear a winter coat when it gets cold. I’m not that odd. And yes, when I’m out, I wear my Apple watch with short sleeves. And wearing a watch, short sleeves or not, is me, but not the jewelry part, although I understand the attraction.

    3 – If you think it’s too grown up, try a Mickey Mouse watch or use the fun watch faces on some smart watches. I know people who do that. I don’t know about the inner child thing. There are times to be serious, a mature person, and times to be anything but. My definition of “grown up” is to know when those serious times are.

    I managed to thin my wallet way down. I had the typical fat wallet carried in my back pocket and was warned that it was doing bad things to my back. I got a slim wallet, ditched lots of crap that I never used, and now carry the wallet in the shirt pocket of my short-sleeved shirt. It’s slim enough and light enough so that I don’t notice it. But I never saw the fat wallet as a grown-up thing.

    Interesting thought about the clock in the classroom. The only time I’d look at it was for classes that seemed to never end.

  2. Yeah, watches can be playful. (And I kind of kick myself for never getting around to putting https://kirk.is/2009/03/13/ , a display that prints the time in not-quite-minute-specific words, on a Pebble) So my point 3 (inner-child) draws from my point 1 (feeling controlled by time) I think I might have an old Mickey Mouse watch of my dad’s – interesting to get that dated.

    I do value punctuality and being reliable – maybe so much so that I offload that to devices that can nudge me when something is pressing, time-wise.

    At the risk of navel gazing here, I’m probably not expressing the inner child thing poorly. I do know when to stop clowning and take things seriously. I’m a bit bi-polar about responsibility: I consider it so devastating to be responsible for something going wrong that I A. lift heaven and earth and make almost any sacrifice to not let it go wrong and B. try to avoid taking responsibility in the first place. That’s tough, because its made me shun big, fraught-but-very-rewarding projects like raising a kid. For some reason, more associative than practical, I connect manly watches – or any watch – with that kind of responsibility-taking.

    But there are some pluses to my way of being as well; letting creativity flourish because I’m not afraid of looking goofy (no responsibility to be shunned there, since the only victim would be me myself, and Me myself don’t mind) And I learn to cultivate low-hanging fruit. And CLEARLY I don’t have a macho reticence, and have few qualms about putting everything in public forums (see, secrecy is a form of responsibility taking, since I may be withholding information that would be important to the situation in the future… and I hate taking on responsibility that doesn’t serve a good purpose.)

    Men here who wear watches, when do you remove it? Last thing before bed?

    • I remove it to dry it after I have had a shower. I wear mine loose so it cleans the wrist and back of the watch as well. Otherwise it’s on 24/7.

      • I only wear my watch when I go out and since I’m retired, that’s only a few times a week. The rest of the time, I’m either at my Mac, which has the time displayed on the screen, or doing something where I don’t care about the time. Actually, if I’m gaming, the time is not displayed and I’ll have to poke my iPad or iPhone to see if I should be doing something else.

        The responsibility thing is a whole other discussion. There’s responsibility for one’s own actions and then there’s responsibility for other people’s actions. There are more, but let’s leave those for now. I have no problem with the first and have gone out of my way at times to add to those responsibilities. The second I tend to equate with people management and while I’ve had that type of responsibility during my career, it wasn’t something I particularly enjoyed. On the other hand, I was a software product manager and while I didn’t have direct responsibility over the people on the team, they did get their technical tasks from me.

        • Yeah, it’s kind of interesting. We conflate “childishness” with “not being responsible” – but I’ve know some very conscientious children. I guess for me the opposite of childishness is “taking authority” — that’s the vibe I for some reason associate with watches, and one I tend to avoid in life – my theory is I got the idea as a kid of “divine retribution – eternal hellfire” if you really screw up something you’re responsible for, so- don’t try to be responsible for too much. It drives me to be a consensus-builder rather than a manager boss.

          • I looked up the definition of childish and it says not acting mature.
            So I looked up mature and it says reached full growth or development. So how does you act when you’ve reached full development. You’d have to define that before you coukd define what it’s not. Sounds to me that it’s one of those things that everyone seems to know when they get to that point when they’re considered mature.

            So I like my definition. You’re mature when you what being mature is and when you should be mature. That says nothing about how to act in non-mature situations.

            So is being responsible something that is part of development? How about authority? I’ve know many responsible people who shun being in authority and many who are in a position of authority but who aren’t responsible or don’t take responsibility.

            But I would say that you’re mature if you take responsibility for your own actions. Taking on less doesn’t make you less mature or less childish.

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