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  • Robert Farago

Never Wear Your Expensive Watch!

What are you, nuts?

Why would you never wear your watch? To preserve its price and collectibility. Just ask Star Wars action figure collectors (but don’t ask them if the Jedi are the bad guys). We’re talking about the joys of NRFB – Never Removed From Box. There’s real money in it. First, the basics . . .

When it comes to selling your expensive watch for maximum money, you need to offer it in the original box. The box needs to be in pristine condition. Like the day it was born.

It also pays to remember that luxury watch buyers – whether professional or private – are like Nazis. SHOW US YOUR PAPERS! They want all the manufacturer’s bumph and a purchase receipt, proving you didn’t come by your horological treasure via a five-finger discount.

And then there’s the condition of the watch. The SLIGHTEST scratch or ding on ANY surface (crystal, case, bezel or band), the SMALLEST break in a leather strap indicating wear and you’ve lost value. Which raises the thorny question: why wear the thing?

Wearing a watch requires removing the little tags and plastic condoms tarting-up the timepiece and protecting it from damage prior to purchase and activation. Accoutrements that give watch collectors a collective hard-on and, thus, bring extra money.

As we all know, wearing a watch also exposes it to DANGER WILL ROBINSON! Have you not seen umpteen watch videos where the presenter wears gloves whilst pimping high-end wristwear? Or visited a high-end watch dealer where they also understand the risks of – gasp! – hand oils!

Truth be told, there’s no way to wear an expensive watch and achieve maximum resale value.

Besides, for a lot of collectors, simply owning the thing is the thing.

Some might say that kind of watch ownership is a psychological sickness. That collectors who collect just to have (and rarely if ever hold) suffer from low self-esteem and an excess of financial resources (in the same way that cocaine is God’s way of telling you you’re making too much money).

I couldn’t possibly comment. Except to say that people who collect watches for the purpose of looking at them are no better or worse than people who collect art to hang it on the wall.

Except that no one save pocket watch collectors hangs watches on a wall. And this is America, dammit. A country where disposability is nearasdammit a religion.

Flippers – buyers who buy to sell at a profit – are the other group likely to NRFB an expensive watch.

I don’t believe flippers are bad for the hobby – in the sense that crypto bros don’t hurt anyone except the millions of people they convinced to buy a “currency” backed by Charles Ponzi.

Anyway, I’ve said my piece. My own philosophy about owning watches is the same as my philosophy on owning a Ferrari: use it as it’s designed to be used or lose my respect.

Not that the possibility is keeping anyone from buying an expensive watch or a badly built, thoroughly unreliable, dangerous and ridiculously expensive Italian sports car. Just so you know.

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