- koimaster (Online)
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The Perfection of Imperfection: Wabi and Watches
"Wow." she said. "That watch is getting a little beaten up."
"Actually, I just got it." I sheepishly replied. "I bought it because it looked like this."
She did not ask any follow up questions. My wife knows better than to engage me on watches. I can't say I blame her. She has a whole life that is not obsessed with the tiny machine on her wrist. Lucky for me, I have you lot.
The Seiko 7002 in question, affectionately known as Crusty, had come from the Philippines, a place I believe to be the Seiko dive watch nesting grounds. If the sheer volume of Philippine eBay sellers is any guide, all Seikos must spend their lives migrating to Manilla, so that they may mate, and be serviced by local watchmakers before returning to the wild. Mine was purchased though a trusted seller on the Watch U Seek sales forum for $80, head only, shipped. Was this too much for a battered old watch? Maybe. I know there are plenty of perfectly good watches that can be purchased brand new for $75-100, but from what I have seen of old Seiko divers, this was not unreasonable, and I was not looking for a new watch. Like many of its kind, it appeared to have lived a hard life, but unlike many, it had not been restored or modified. The hands may have been replaced as they look a bit less old than the rest of it, but overall, it seemed genuine. It had an honest face.
Wabi is a word that gets tossed around in the watch community, perhaps a bit more liberally than it should. We generally use it to describe wear and tear, but of a kind that we find aesthetically appealing. You will often see it applied to old Seiko and Citizen dive watches. Sometimes a seller will describe his watch as "having some wabi" which I am fairly certain is both grammatically incorrect and a gross oversimplification. Researching the term, I discovered a wealth of information about the concept of wabi-sabi in Japanese art and culture, and this little article on the G-Shock enthusiast site G-Peopleland.com that is of particular interest to us watch loving types. The author compares wabi, "the feeling of sorrow, often felt when seeing something ravaged by time" to shibusa, which might be described as a combination of age and bittersweet remembrance. Other sources define wabi as rustic simplicity, and sabi as the beauty of that which is old or faded. Together, they encompass impermanence, imperfection, and the beauty found in the natural cycle of growth and decay.
http://www.thetimebum.com/2013/09/the-p ... i-and.html
“Your heart was warm and happy
With the lilt of Irish laughter
Every day and in every way
Now forever and ever after."