Thursday, October 28, 2010


I do not wear a watch.

I own two of them. Both sit in my sock drawer upstairs, waiting for new batteries. That’s not likely to happen. Because I don’t need a watch.

I’m tough on watches. Those I wear on my wrist I inevitably bash on something and crack the glass – well, plastic. The pocket watches I have – the two in my drawer – went there and stayed there when their batteries died.

The last wristwatch I owned was a Swatch. This was in high school. I stopped wearing it because the watch’s plastic band lent itself liberally to cases of Swatch Sweat, and I tired of my wrist feeling damp all the time.

Dad, now he wore a watch. The watch changed from time to time, but he always had the watch on. Years of outdoor work as a bricklayer darkened his skin except where the watch rested. So when the watch was gone, he had a ghost of a watch on his wrist.

I have other timepieces. An iPod Touch. A pager I have to carry around one week out of the month. There’s a clock in my truck. Clocks on the wall. Clocks in the computer. And, frankly, the only magic hours that need marking are 4:05 AM, when the alarm goes off, 5:03 AM, when I get out of the truck at the bus stop, 5:13 PM, when I’m back on the bus heading home, and roughly 9 PM, when it’s time to put the kids to bed.

So it doesn’t surprise me to read that the watch is going out of fashion, or at least out of necessity. According to the UK’s Daily Mail, only 28 percent of those aged 25 or younger have watches, compared to 86 percent of those polled, no matter their age.

I kind of wander through time like Jim Henson in “Time Piece,” anyway.

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