A relationship with a watch can be a complex one, fraught with the tensions between longing and expectation, and the quotidian reality that it is just an object, full of as much meaning as you are able to maintain within it. If you buy a watch brand new, you can bask in the pleasure of the boutique experience, but are inevitably faced with the anguish of the drawing of first blood as you notice a single scratch on an otherwise pristine surface. If you buy vintage, you inherit the imperfect character of the watch as you recognise that you are merely the caretaker of an artefact, rather than Smaug sitting on a pile of greedy wealth. But as the caretaker of a crumbling chateau understands, being responsible for an artefact of the past is to accept that its condition will never be as good again as it is in that moment. But the real question (which is what this column is really trying to get at) is why do you want this watch instead of that watch, and why. Time+Tide reader Gilbert articulately explains why he made the decision on a Rolex Kermit, over another collectible vintage Rolex. When did…

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