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DYDT: Wear the Time

Battlefish posed an interesting question to me a few weeks ago.  Her wristwatch broke, and it made her wonder how many people actually wore wristwatches anymore since phones (which tell the time) are so commonly in people’s hands nowadays.

I had to admit that my watch died last year, and I decided to stop wearing one.  The jeweler was replacing the battery when he informed me that the watch still wouldn’t start.  It was just too old.  While the parts could be replaced if I was willing to send it away (I wasn’t), I could buy a new watch for much less than what it would take to fix the current watch.  The current watch had sentimental value, and I would rather have an unusable watch in hand than risk possibly losing it but having it fixed.  So I went home and put my watch away.

I considered getting a new watch, and we looked at a few.  But I never found one that I loved as much as the one I was no longer using.  And then it started to feel redundant with the phone.  The phone was like always having a watch in my pocket; one that could hold hundreds of alarms throughout the day.  I couldn’t see spending money on something I clearly didn’t need.

So I’m now watch-free.  I’m also datebook-free (paper calendar was replaced by phone calendar), camera-free (I usually just use the camera in the phone), and book-free (sometimes I have a paper book with me, but usually I read whatever book I have loaded on the phone).  So I’m lighter.  But I also sort of miss my wristwatch.

Do you still wear a wristwatch, or do you use the clock on your phone?

Who was to know the future of the wristwatch when I begged my parents incessantly for my pink, plastic Swatch?


1 Tracie { 07.16.13 at 7:44 am }

I wear my watch at all times (except in the shower), even when I’m sleeping. I usually buy a cheap (less than $15) watch at Target every two years or so.

2 Papa Bradstein { 07.16.13 at 8:05 am }

I have my dad’s Rolex, which he had custom-converted to a left-handed watch…so I was the only kid who could reasonably inherit it. However, it’s broken several times and while I liked wearing it to remind me of him, it was too much hassle to keep getting it repaired. I’ll never get rid of it, of course, but I’m not sure how often I’ll wear it either.

What we really need for our phones, which are nothing but bulky pocket watches, is fobs, of course: http://www.kovels.com/Price-Guide/Watch-Fobs.html

3 Egg Timer { 07.16.13 at 8:18 am }

I gave up wearing a watch when I had to start wearing a medical alert bracelet. It felt strange to have two things on one arm or one thing on each arm. I just started using my phone.

4 ANDMom { 07.16.13 at 8:25 am }

I wear a watch most of the time. Yes, I could check my phone, but it seems rude to me, and indiscreet, to check a phone (for anything) mid-conversation. Much easier to just get a glance at my wrist.

5 a { 07.16.13 at 8:37 am }

My house is filled with watches. My husband buys, sells, repairs, and collects pocket watches. Yet, I always use my phone.

I used to wear a watch all the time, but, like you, when my favorite watch died, I didn’t get it fixed or replaced.

6 Kasey { 07.16.13 at 8:53 am }

I still wear a wrist watch, mainly because I need it for work. If I didn’t need it I don’t think I would wear it because more often then not I still pick up my phone to actually tell the time lol.

I also still have a paper schedule because I like to have something I can look at and blot notes on.

And there is nothing like a good book. A real one that I can feel the pages and smell the words. I download most of mine but there really is nothing like feeling a book in your hands.

7 Catwoman73 { 07.16.13 at 9:09 am }

I ditched the watch a couple of years ago, when they were banned at work (apparently, they pose an infection control risk). Now, I only wear one when I run.

8 Mina { 07.16.13 at 9:26 am }

I have loads of them. Both my husband and I love watches and together we have around 20. I wear them all the time, I cannot leave the house without a watch. The phone is the phone, I usualy forget it at home, but the watch seldom. I match them to my outfit, purse, mood. They are not cheap, but they are not rolexes either. My favourite is the Rotary with diamonds I got for my birthday two years ago. Exquisite delicate piece that I absolute love and I wear it when I need a bit of extra good luck.

9 Amy O'Connell { 07.16.13 at 9:37 am }

I stopped wearing one when I was pregnant about 14 years ago. It suddenly felt itchy and heavy. I just recently started wearing it again but it bothers me when it is really hot and humid. Guess I’m fair-weathered watch fan. My phone can also do everything but it has a lazy owner!

10 Gail { 07.16.13 at 9:44 am }

I wear a watch. I just can’t give it up. I’ve updated from a leather strap to a silver/gold one and a much nicer watch, but I don’t want to give it up.

11 Katherine A { 07.16.13 at 9:56 am }

I only wear a watch when I’m at work because I need a hand that counts seconds that I can see easily. A wrist watch does the trick. Also, I can’t carry my cell phone with me at work for various reasons.

If I actually found a vintage art deco watch or watch pendant that I liked and within my price range, I might consider wearing a watch regularly, but I’d be wearing it more as a decorative item than a functional one. I mean, I’d probably look at it to check the time, but the look would be much more the point of wearing it.

12 loribeth { 07.16.13 at 10:01 am }

Yes, I still wear a watch. But then, my cellphone is rarely on. ; ) I’ve had one since I was 8, so I think my left wrist would feel bare without one! I tend to have just one & then wear it to death…. I wore the nurse’s watch my mom got as a high school graduation gift for years. Dh gave me a watch early in our marriage that I wore for a long, long time. I got a watch for my 20th anniversary with the company, but it never worked well no matter how often I replaced the battery. My current watch was my 25th anniversary gift from the company & it’s doing better (knock wood).

I also have a dressy watch that was my late MIL’s (whom I never met) — my FIL gave it to me just before we got married & I wore it at my wedding (SIL got another of MIL’s watches that she wore at her wedding to dh’s brother). After the wedding, I took it to have it appraised to see if we should get a separate rider for it on our insurance. “That old thing??” said dh. Turns out “that old thing” was white gold and worth about $2,000 — and that was almost 30 years ago (!) — it’s probably gone up in value. I keep it in the safe deposit box at the bank, but I bring it out & wear it for family weddings, etc. Someday when one of our nephews gets married I’ll give it to his bride, or to his daughter, if he ever has one.

13 Peach { 07.16.13 at 10:26 am }

I haven’t ever worn a watch. I was of the generation that had cellphones right out if high school so by the time I needed a watch (going to class or work) I already had a cellphone so I didn’t bother. For me, it just makes sense since I always have my phone so I don’t need something else to carry that can tell me what something I already carry tells me. I also haven’t used a datebook because I’ve always had a cell…but I did and still do have a camera … I just only bring it with me if I’m intending on taking nice pics. Otherwise I use my cell. Ahh, what would we do without them? They’re taking over the world! 😉

14 Betty m { 07.16.13 at 11:04 am }

I wear one every day. I have a couple of special ones given to me by my parents when I got married and by my husband on my 40th. I have some swatches for holidays and swimming etc. My husband has some vintage ones which he loves but rarely wears. My kids have some too which they wear even though only one of them can reliably tell the time.

15 Aerotropolitan Comitissa { 07.16.13 at 11:47 am }

Phone all the way. I think many people wear them as a fashion statement only these days. Mr wears one because he usually wants to know the time when he’s on a conference call so a few exceptions.

16 Another Dreamer { 07.16.13 at 11:51 am }

I haven’t owned a wristwatch since I got a cellphone, oh seven years ago? Less for me to worry about or carry, especially now that I have a smartphone. Like you I have books there, a watch, I have games, I have my calendar, an alarm clock, and obviously a phone too 😉 For me, the less to carry the better so it works.

17 deathstar { 07.16.13 at 11:53 am }

I still wear a watch, I have a Samsung Galaxy Nexus and it’s huge so it’s cumbersome to drag out. I almost always have my hands full of something, so it’s easier for me to wear a watch. And I’m one of those perpetually late people even though I set my watch ahead. I’m currently wearing one of those Bumble watches I bought from a friend, but I want to get a sportswatch that is waterproof.

18 Tiara { 07.16.13 at 12:07 pm }

No watch for me…similar story, mine broke & I never found another I liked as much then just stopped looking. Everything is in my phone now too.

19 Monica { 07.16.13 at 12:56 pm }

I HAVE to wear a watch or I feel undressed. It runs a little slow so if I really need to know the time, I check the cell phone. 🙂

20 It Is What It Is { 07.16.13 at 1:18 pm }

I used to wear a watch all.the.time. I have great watches (a Tag my husband bought as a gift on our first cruise, the Movado he bought on on honeymoon as a wedding gift, the Nixon I got as a birthday present, the Michael Kors my son gave me for Mother’s Day), but I rarely wear one now. It is mostly because of baby…carrying him or the carrier can cause issues having a watch on) but also because I can now get the time from my phone or from a stranger’s phone if mine isn’t handy.

I do miss wearing it and do still sometimes as an accessory to complete an outfit.

21 Pam { 07.16.13 at 1:19 pm }

I used to have a Mickey Mouse watch that I loved that stopped working. I never got it fixed but I still have it. Then I had a regular watch that worked up until some time last year or the year before. At that time I hadn’t really thought of what to get but my DH solved that. Being a techy family, I now where a red iPod Nano as my watch. It’s very cool and gets lots of comments. But now that Apple went back to the old design of the Nano it’s no longer an option. I think it’s because they are coming out with the iWatch or something. I also use my Samsung Galaxy SII to check the time and use the alarms on it.

22 k { 07.16.13 at 2:02 pm }

Watch free here. I always want to wear one, so I’ll buy one, and then it languishes in my jewelry box. Alas, I’m too attached to my phone to really need it.

23 Sharon { 07.16.13 at 3:46 pm }

I worked as a registered nurse in hospitals for over seven years, and in those days, I needed a watch with a second hand in order to count patients’ respiratory rates and heart rates. When I left nursing, I decided to give up wearing a wristwatch. Nowadays, I find the feeling of something on my wrist annoying, so I’ve never resumed the practice of wearing a watch and, like you, rely on my cell phone to tell the time.

(And yes, I, too, loved the Swatch back in the day.)

24 Ana { 07.16.13 at 4:21 pm }

I wear a watch. Its digital, has stopwatch feature and multiple time setting/alarms that I do not use. Its a plastic-y band Timex. This is my third similar watch (the last 2 I wore out and the band literally cracked). I do stuff at work that requires wearing gloves/sterile hands so I can’t just reach into my pocket to grab the phone. On weekends, I like to go out & about without my phone (or for emergencies have it deep in a bag) so I’ll wear my watch for that. Also for working out/running, swimming (it’s waterproof). So yeah, unless I’m on vacation WITHOUT the kids (because I need to keep track of when they need feeding/changing/toileting/sleeping) I wear a watch.

25 persnickety { 07.16.13 at 7:30 pm }

i stopped wearing my Tissot (souvenir of JYA in Geneva) when I got one of the little square nano iPods, and got a “richard Tracy” watch band for it. Then about a year ago i stopped altogether wearing that.

I do occasionally miss wearing a watch, but I never liked wearing it when I typed, so it spent more time off the wrist than on anyway.

I do have an assortment of pocket watches, including one as a necklace, so do use them, but not as much.

And timely reminder that the Tissot needs to visit a repairer, the insides have never been the same after a swim in a NZ waterfall.

26 GeekChic { 07.16.13 at 7:42 pm }

I wear a watch (love my Vestel) but I also don’t have a cell. I prefer real books to e-books (I read screens enough for work, don’t need to do more when I’m relaxing).

I do, however, use my iTouch for my calendar and contacts.

27 Justine { 07.16.13 at 9:40 pm }

I have TWO cell phones now, but I still wear a watch. And feel naked without it. Because it’s an extra STEP to pull said phone of out my purse or pocket or wherever it happens to be. 😛

28 magpie { 07.16.13 at 10:15 pm }

i stopped wearing a watch long before i had a phone on me all the time. there’s always a clock somewhere. or a person with a watch – or a phone.

29 Jessie { 07.17.13 at 1:24 am }

Phone, I’m sick of needing a new watch battery

30 Brid { 07.17.13 at 2:34 am }

I love my watch… I love it! Jim’s parents gave it to me when I finished grad school and I wore it for many years, this boyish, clunky, multi-dialed Tissot. I love this watch. Then, one day (I was taking Jack sledding) I realised I didn’t remember taking it off. We walked the route over and over through the snow and melting spring, but nothing. I looked everywhere and was heartbroken. Jim surprised me and replaced it –the exact style/model or whatever– for mothers’ day. So now, I have been wearing this one of the same for many years as well, and sort of have that feeling the other boot is about to drop. By the way… where is it?!
Ps. I love it when people ask me if I know the time. It’s a little moment of intimacy with a stranger, I think.

31 Mali { 07.17.13 at 4:41 am }

I wear a watch, almost all the time. I don’t have one on now (lazy vacation breakfast before shower) and I can see the time on my iPad, but I feel naked without the watch.

I use my iPad, and more recently my smartphone, as my calendar, my book, and my notepad. And now my map. But not my watch. Too much hassle to pull it out of my bag, and look at it, and if I’m with someone, it is rude.

And what happens if the phone’s battery runs dead/needs to be recharged. How do you know the time then?

32 St. Elsewhere { 07.17.13 at 5:15 am }

My first watch was a gift from my aunt. It had an elastic metal belt, and since it had been a huge chore and achievement tolearn to read the analog watch, I was very proud of my watch. I could tell you the time!

It went well till it broke down, and never got functioning again.

My last watch was a gift from my brother right before I married. There is quite a story, but my leather-belt watch was eaten by dogs.

I never bought a watch again.

I will refer to the wall clocks, or the TV screen (ticker, anyone?) or my cell phone, or the tiny time display on my laptop and I know what time it is.

33 Bionic { 07.17.13 at 12:59 pm }

I’ve never worn watches. I love them, but for some reason even if they are extremely loose, they make my joints ache. So it’s handy for me that I have a phone to tell the time now — I used to be very good at knowing exactly where all the publicly visible clocks were on any route I traveled often. (Sidebar: I really do miss the architectural habit of public, attractive clocks. I wish there were more of them.) I am, however, aware that fewer and fewer other people wear watches, because it feels like much more of an imposition to ask the time of someone who has to dig through a bag to tell you than someone who can just glance at her wrist.

34 Battynurse { 07.17.13 at 1:47 pm }

No watch. I don’t like them around my wrist although I can wear bracelets. Funny thing is that in nursing school part of our required equipment or uniform was a watch. I found one that was on a lanyard to wear around my neck for school. Then for years I just used wall clocks at work for the second hand until I found a small watch that attaches to my stethoscope. Granted the watch doesn’t have the right time on it since I only use it for the second hand.

35 Valery Valentina { 07.17.13 at 3:41 pm }

Watches always were special birthday gifts. On my 30th I got a matching Tag with Mr Oz. I think I wore it after our break-up till the battery died. I feel odd wearing it again so I don’t. My expensive consultant days are also long past, and battery replacement is ridiculously expensive ~$100 or so. I guess this post made me realise I do miss the watch.
Although I generally know what time it is. No smart phone…

36 Heidi { 07.17.13 at 5:34 pm }

Yes, definitely watch. Specifically, a Timex Indiglo. I don’t use my phone much anyway (to tell you the truth, I don’t like phones in general much), and I became very attached to the Indiglo during the early days of motherhood, as I’ve spent much time over the past 8 years surreptitiously checking the time in darkened rooms.

37 Wolfers { 07.18.13 at 1:03 am }

I never wear a watch- I just don’t like anything on my wrists (feeling chained down). For time, I just look on the wall clocks, my phone, or ask other folks. 🙂

38 Siochana { 07.24.13 at 9:24 pm }

Always wear a digital watch to work (not practical to have my phone turned on in the classroom: what if it rings?)
I have a “non work watch” as well. I do use my phone for the time, but have never even considered that it would permanently replace the watch. This is probably because I have never much liked phones and my phone spends a lot of time switched off and forgotten at the bottom of a bag or drawer. Not very practical if I need to know the time 😉

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