I recently watched a GQ interview featuring Trevor Noah where he talked about 10 things that he cannot live without. One of the things that he mentioned was a watch. A quick Google search later and I realized that he is indeed known for his watch collection. This got me thinking about watches, the people who wear them and their reasons for it.
In a world where smartphones are serving more and more functions including telling time, why should we still wear a watch?
Watches are image enhancers. I have seen countless pictures of Barrack Obama, his sleeves rolled up, making his watch visible. I cannot get over how dapper and in control he looks. Even without knowing him, going by those images alone, he comes off as a man who gets things done. That impression is not a new phenomenon. For years, watches have been associated with wealth and power. They are status symbols.
One of the comments that I read on Trevor Noah’s GQ interview was about how expensive his watch was. Wearing a watch can get you that kind of reaction. And you can go for watches that denote the kind of image that you wish to portray.
In the interview, Trevor also talked about craftsmanship. This is what sets apart one watch brand from another and determines whether the watch you are wearing qualifies to be a status symbol. With a well-crafted watch, from a well-known brand, you stand out. So, even as you are watch-shopping, this is something to keep in mind.
I once watched a Bollywood movie, 3 idiots. One of the characters had this really old watch that her fiancé – one of the villains in the movie – did not like. So he got her a new and what he thought was a better watch. She later broke up with him and realized that she loved the movie’s hero and all because the latter recognized the significance of the old watch. The watch belonged to her late mother.
Watches make great heirlooms that you can then pass on to your children on milestone birthdays, graduations or after you’re gone. In Trevor Noah’s GQ interview, he associates his love of watches with his dad. It is something that connects them. So much family history can be tied to a watch. A good quality watch is a great inheritance.
For this to work through, the watch that you choose has to be a high-quality watch; a well-crafted one. This is so that it can last for years, relatively unscathed and can therefore be passed on from generation to generation.
If you need to know what time it is, the watch is right there on your wrist. You do not need to start reaching into your bag or pockets and looking for your phone. Not to mention there are times when your phone will not be within reach, or when it is not socially acceptable to take out your phone. At such times, having a wristwatch is a bonus.
In addition to this, smartphones can be a huge letdown, what with constantly needing to be charged. If you are counting on them for timekeeping, you might end up being inconvenienced. With watches, this will not be an issue. Therefore they are not just convenient but reliable as well.
Watches make really good accessories. You can have different types of watches for every occasion or to match your various looks. You could have a sombre watch for interviews and meetings, flashy watches for partying, and artsy beaded ones for festivals. Whatever your style or personality, there is a watch that can help you express that.
A phone comes with a lot of distractions. You go to check the time and a message comes in that you now feel you have to respond to immediately. There are notifications for emails, social media or the myriad of apps that your phone contains. You get sucked in by all the stimuli. The reason that you got out your phone in the first place is forgotten. With a watch, you get to avoid all this.
The lack of distractions adds to the functionality of a watch. You are more connected and aware of time. Consequently, you are more likely to make the best use of your time. A study done on watch-wearers and conscientiousness proved this to be true.