For some strange coincident, the colleagues that I'm working with right now appear to be into watches. So they wear these fabulous gleaming chronometers on their wrists while I try to hide my Casio behind my back. Fortunately, they were also kind enough to educate me - a persona non-grata when it comes to luxurious goods - about the finer points of watches. As a guy who treats watches purely as a device to tell time, and even then I wear them only when I really have to, I'm not exactly big on watches.
"So how do you keep track of the time if you don't wear a watch?" One of them asked me, after seeing nothing on my wrists. He was probably perplexed as I am always on time for all appointments.
"I don't need to wear a watch," I told him. "If I need to check the time, I can always refer to my handset."
"But what happens if you forget to bring your handset?"
"Then I just ask whoever is around. People are always helpful."
He nodded his head grudgingly.
I was waiting for him to ask me what happens if there was no one around because my answer would be to look at the sun!
So I'm not big on watches. But I must admit that after spending some time with my colleagues, I'm beginning to see their point of view. The watches, for the most part, really do look fine. I suppose that watches are the closest thing to jewelry - bling-bling - that males can wear.
One of my colleagues buys a Louis Vuitton every year. He says it because they are an investment - apparently, Louis Vuitton hold its value well. He said that the model he bought ten years ago for $8,000 is worth more than double the figure today. And then he adds, "And if you need money in a hurry, you can always hock them. You cannot do this with most other watches."
Hmm, what kind of investor goes to a pawn shop? Yes, you're right - not a successful one!
Life certainly has changed! Watches used to be simple for me - Seiko, Rado and if you have money, Louis Vuitton. Today, there's a whole armada of luxury watches, many of them I never even heard of until recently. These include A. Lange & Sohne, Ball, Breguet, Breitling, Bulgari, Cartier, Chopard, Corum, Franck Muller, Greubel Forsey, Harry Winston, IWC Schaffhausen, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Milus, Patek Philippe, Richard Mille, Roger Dubuis, Tag-Heuer, Ulysse Nardin, Vacheron Constantin and Vogard. (I had to triple check all the spelling to ensure that they are correct!) But I suppose it is not the companies fault. Apparently, many of these companies have existed for decades, centuries even. Except that being a village boy, I only knew about Seiko!
Apparently, a few models can withstand depths until a few hundred meters underwater while others can take in a few Gs. That's fine, except for the part that none of the owner are going to dive that deep or fly upside down in a F-14 Tomcat!
"Ahh, you're missing the point, Azizi," my colleague retorts. "The owner may not do those things physically but he does it in his mind! After all, how many Harley Davidson owners are big rough outlaws? How many 4WD owners take their vehicles to climb mountains? How many Porsche owners drive at 200 miles per hour?"
My time to nod my head.
He then tells me that Louis Vuitton doesn't tell time well. Apparently, they are always fast or late - never on time!
"So why do you own three Louis Vuitton then?" I asked him, my eyebrows frowning.
He looked straight into my eyes, hesitated for a moment and then smiled gleefully. "I buy Louis Vuitton to tell the world I have a lot of money!"
Azizi Ali is Malaysia's premier writer, speaker and coach on money matters. He is a Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) and holds an MBA from University of Bath, UK.
Article Source: Azizi Ali