Pocket Watches – Bane or Boon?

Now mainly famous with model-train enthusiasts and dandies, pocket watches were once the discerning gentleman’s timepiece of choice (wristwatches were felt to be effeminate and the hallmark of a weak constitution). While wristwatches (and more recently, cell-phones) are now la mode, I still find that I have use for my trusty pocket-watch, most often during formal occasions. It’s not because I’m some sort of foppish dandy who is into unnecessary vanity items (that is entirely beside the point) – I find that it is difficult to wear a tux shirt with a wristwatch at the same time, because the long cuffs (French or otherwise) overlap with where the watch would be, making it difficult to wear both comfortably. Enter the pocket watch.


Even though the pocket watch is a luxury item, if you frequent formal events, it’s very nice to have one. While you can spend as much as you want on a pocket watch (antique models from well known makers can go for tens of thousands of dollars), you can find plenty of great pocket watches for under $100 that tell time and look snazzy. For example, Fossil has a few nice models – my favorite being the black dialed model. Harrington also makes a nice model for around $50, and offers free inscription of initials on the front cover, as well as a short message on the inside cover, making it an excellent gift.


If you really like pocket watches, you can always collect decorative fobs (the little medallions that attach to the chain) – though such an activity would push you over the edge of “stylish watch owner” to “obsessive fob collector” – a characterization that most sane people avoid. Even so, it takes all kinds, and once you get your first pocket watch, you might be hooked.