Bezel & Barrel REVIEWS, NEWS, AND INFO FOR WATCH ENTHUSIASTS

The Watch As Legacy

If you’re reading Everest Journal, you probably either have a few high end watches, or you aspire to. So you pretty much get it. You get why people love these watches – the Rolexes, the Pateks, the Jaeger-LeCoultres, the Vacheron Constantins, the Audemars Piguets, etc.

And you no doubt are aware that watches, even the modest ones, are often handed down from generation to generation. I’ll bet many of you have Grandpa’s old rail road pocket watch hiding in the back of your dresser drawer, or your Dad’s Hamilton wristwatch that he wore everyday under his button down shirt sleeve.

For the luckier among you, the watch you inherited is a Rolex or other fine watch.

So you get the whole legacy thing.

But what about the people who don’t get it? Those who say, “Why wear a watch? You’ve got a cell phone to tell the time.”

As a writer and copywriter, I belong to several groups which support those interests. One is a closed Facebook group centered around copywriting – writing the words in advertisements and promotions that convince people to buy. Now, please understand, I’m about the only one in the group of nearly 4000 members who is a watch geek.

There’s an interesting discussion going on in there right now, about the Patek Philippe catch-phrase, “You never actually own a Patek Philippe. You merely look after it for the next generation.”

Someone posted a photo of a current PP ad containing almost nothing but those words, from Harper’s Bazaar and asked if it were lazy copywriting. The responses ranged from “I’d say lazy…” to “What’s a Patek Philippe?” to “It's Switzerland. It must be watches or chocolate.”

(Yeah… some people…)

Well, once we got the fact that Patek is a luxury watch brand out of the way, the discussion turned to the fact that this ad is really talking about stewardship and legacy. Then the non-watch geeks in the group started to see the point. At least the open minded ones did. (Of course, there were people who disdain those with the means and inclination to buy such a timepiece. But those types can’t be convinced.)

So… what’s your plan for your collection? Are you going to eventually auction it off, hoping for a financial return on investment? Or are you going to hand it all down to your kids? Or a little of both?

 

-Ed Estlow

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