March 4, 2010

Things to Love: a vintage Timex Automatic

A Timex Automatic, square, gold-plate, Viscount, 1974
Catalog # 47860 Movement # 033

It's true. I get excited about things. I've always fallen in love hard and fast with certain vintage items like cameras. They need to be complicated but I have to understand them. For example, I can't get into solid-state radios or computers because I don't understand transistors or silicon chips. But give me a thing with gears, cogs, springs and levers, I'm in heaven.

So, I never had a chance. How could I resist this golden beauty?

Bold, chunky even, but with depth and lives lived, I found this old gold-plated Timex Automatic watch at a local antique store and I had to have it.

The scratches give it depth - I have no problem with them.

Plus, my boys love it. They're fascinated by the colour and the weight.

I remember feeling a similar way to my dad's watches.

He gave me plastic banded diving watch. It had a sharp crenulated rotating dial, the way a castle wall has teeth. I think it had to do with times zones or something. The dial was an ocean blue at twilight. Deep. Iridescent. It made me feel cool and afloat.

I used to just fiddle with it. Maybe too much. I overwound it and never told my dad. At that age, I didn't know things could be fixed. I only knew they could be broken.

This recent find reminds of the old watch. Also lately, I've been thinking about owning watches worth leaving behind to J & E. My white Swatch and my Casio just didn't cut it.

My quartz Timex Mercury broke down and wasn't really worth fixing - but this watch -- is it weird for a 40 year old to worry about legacies and bequests?

E. was with me when I bought it. He was totally bored with the shopping experience. He kept on saying he wanted to leave but as I climbed up the hill to head back home with him on my shoulders and my arms up to keep his steady, E. fingered the watch.

One day you can have this.


When you're older, if that's okay?

Okay, Daddy.

I told him he was getting heavier and I wouldn't be able to carry him home anymore. One day he would be too old for this.

Like when I'm ten?

Sure, E.

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