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Down the Hatchet

Ticked Off at Time

By Akshay Patil
COLUMNIST

There comes a time in your life when you must make the decision to buy a new watch. For some people, this happens on a regularly basis, when they are forced to make the tempting decision of whether or not to add a cool-looking watch to their mini-warehouse of time keeping apparel. For me (and many more fiscally conservative individuals), this time comes when my current watch breaks. For me, this time is now.

Yes, my $40-dollar watch purchased from eBay senior year of high-school is now on it’s final legs (or arms, haha!) of existence. It’s not really broken ... I mean, it keeps time and whatnot, but there’s this weird pin thing that I thought was fixed but then broke again. Now I figure it’s just not worth the hassle. Something like that. Anyways, to make a short story shorter, I need to start looking for a new watch. There are a lot of things you have to consider when getting a new watch. How stylish? How functional? How much? Sadly, I don’t have the answers to any of these questions.

On the one hand, I know I don’t want one of those watches that tries to trick you ... you know, those watches where the makers feel like the only important times of the day are noon and midnight? Because who needs little tick-marks indicating the hours when you can force people to stare for days at their watches, perplexed as to what hour it is.

Not that the tick marks really help me that much -- most of the time people ask me what time it is and I just look dumfounded at my watch, unable to tell for myself. I’ve now learned that the best way to satisfy other people’s curiosity is to just let them read my watch themselves.

“Then why” you ask “don’t you just get a digital watch?” To that question, my friends, I don’t have an answer. Sure, digital watches are more convenient, keep better time, cost less, and have more features, but those are irrelevant points.

I mean, who uses their watch to tell time? Seriously. The cool thing about analog is that it’s stylish and has more room for personality. I mean, my old watch had Marvin the Martian on it. Come on, how much more stylish can it get than that? And talk about suave... women swooned at the sight of my wrist. Sure it wasn’t great quality, but who cared? It looked nice at a quick glance and closer analysis offered entertainment to most admirers. It kept reasonable time and always had the date right, or at least it would have if all months had 31 days. It’s a good watch, and I feel pressured to find a suitable replacement that can retire good ol’ Marvin in style.

The problem is that I need to decide what sort of statement I want my watch to make. A minimalist watch that says that I value elegance? An expensive watch to wow the homies in the hood who are all about the bling bling? Maybe I can show my nerd pride with one of them futuristic watches that powers itself from your body heat and recalibrates every five seconds by measuring the earth’s distance from the sun. Perhaps I should opt for a piece of legendary Swiss craftsmanship, declaring that I’m right, you’re wrong, and the time is exactly 4:23 pm (and 46.7 seconds). Or maybe the answer is to just go watchless altogether and wear Hawaiian shirts to match.

There are so many options to choose from. The decision gets so frustrating it makes you want to just throw everything out the window and watch the time fly.