Entering the World of Watches

by Matt Langford

I've always been fascinated with watches, but not to the point where I really learned about them. My number one concern was style, quickly followed by cost.

I didn't understand why someone would pay $25,000 for a watch, much less $500. I definitely did not pay attention to terms like quartz, mechanical, automatic, complications, and crown.

My first watch that left any kind of mark on my brain was some sort of digital Timex (maybe) that I bought at a now closed sporting goods store named Jumbo Sports. I remember it had a back light and beeped incessantly.

Through high school and college, I had a myriad of watches from brands like Fossil, Swatch, Kenneth Cole, Timex, and others. I worked at a clothing store that sold watches on the side and used my discount on most of them.

Then for years, I didn't wear a watch at all. After all, my Nokia/Razr/Blackjack/iPhone provided all of the information that a watch could and more. What's really the point of wearing a watch too?

Then came the AppleWatch. As a tech guy, I had to give it a shot. And guess what, my interest in watches was back. I assembled quite a collection of bands, forever fiddled with faces, and became a big ambassador of the product.

But as time wore on, the novelty and functionality of the AppleWatch has faded for me. I never use apps, rarely switch bands, and keep turning off more and more notifications. However, I still check the time. Constantly.

I knew I wanted a watch, just not a smart watch. I also knew I wanted a low end luxury watch as opposed to a high end budget watch. I'm not opposed to eye-catching "wowza" watches, but for this one, I wanted something classic and timeless looking.

In summary, I wanted a classic looking watch from a reputable brand that wouldn't break the bank. I wanted something covered by Hodinkee, not something found at every department store.

The search was on!

A Citizen Promaster Tough (green or blue) was a serious contender for a while. I really wanted something by Hamilton, but I was mostly drawn to their $600+ designs. I wasn't planning on dropping that much on my first real watch. Not yet.

After a lot of research, I finally settled on a Seiko SRPG47K1 (model name just rolls off the tongue doesn't it). It's an automatic watch from a reputable brand. It's a limited edition (kind of), different than their standard variants, and will still allow me to make my mortgage payments.

Seiko Watch

I obviously have a lot to learn about the world of watches. Knowing my personality, I'll become obsessed with them and find ways to justify (or possibly profit from) a collection.

For now, I'm confident I have a good watch that can be worn for just about any occasion. If you have any suggestions for complementary pieces, let me know. I know I'll need something rugged from time to time (no G-Shock for me). And I'm sure I'll want something mechanical soon.