Anyone who has been collecting watches for more than a couple of years will recall a time when they were able to buy today’s most desirable watches right out an authorised dealer’s display cabinet. Today you might be labelled a “flipper” and blacklisted by a brand for selling something you rightfully own and should be able to do with as you please. Is that right?
Barry Schwartz is an American psychologist, Professor of Social Theory and Social Action at Swarthmore College, and since 2016 has been visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley. His work focuses on the intersection of psychology and economics… He is also the author of the book “The Paradox of Choice” and he talks about the concepts from the book in this TED talk. In this post I wanted to outline some of the key points he makes, and connect them to a watch collector’s decision-making processes.
As I began seeing more Furlan Marri watches shared on Instagram, I asked myself why someone would choose this watch in the morning, when looking at their watch box. I won’t go into the background story of the brand and the reasons this is an enormously popular release; Wei Koh wrote all about it here and you can read that if you want some background.
I just had a conversation with my buddy Ben (@koreahasseoul1) and I felt like the topic was worthy of a post. Incidentally he’s a pretty interesting collector, and I would urge you to chat to him too if you feel like you want some advice about your collection, or just to talk watches. I always appreciate his perspectives, and I am sure you will too. Ben and I spoke about how collecting has evolved, especially in the last two to three years.
Have you ever heard of the term “Yak shaving”? The term was supposedly coined by Carlin Vieri from MIT, but others attribute its popularity to a Ren and Stimpy episode. Either way, I found it had some applicability to watch collecting, so I decided to share some thoughts on this; while slightly obscure and not wholly enlightening… hopefully still educational!
I watched a TED talk by Bill Burnett … so I decided to share some of his ideas and connect them to watches. Firstly: Why do you collect? What do you collect, exactly? How do you see your collecting journey today, in a year, in five years? Secondly: take your response to the first part, and try and find parallels with your original answer about your ideas on the meaning of life.