“And why should I do all of this?” I ask her.
“Why, so we can travel,” she says. “And so you can buy me jewelry. And how about my own SLK? I’ve put up with you for almost 28 years, now, and what has it gotten me?”
And it’s usually right about here that my ‘husband ears’ kick in and I just sort of, well, don’t hear her anymore. I just sort of manage to answer, “yes, dear” at all the right times, and go from there, usually finishing with a, “Yes, dear, I’ll try and do better” as she heads off to have a look at what’s going on at the local Didi’s Fashions, Stein Mart, etc.
And that’s when I head upstairs to the library, fire up the old Dell and head straight to feeBay, where the first thing I do is type “Grand Diver, Miyota” or “Glycine Combat Diver” or “Seiko PADI Diver” and wait the 3.14159265358 seconds for it to give me the results. And sometimes, well, you know how it is; something unexpected pops up, and you have to check and double-check it to make sure you’re not hallucinating. And, just this last week, I wasn’t – hallucinating, that is. I mean, there it was in feeBay black and white:
Vintage Men's INVICTA Automatic Grand Diver Watch.
And it had a Buy-it-Now price of $120 USD, plus free shipping. Hmmm…
So I opened up the page and saw a picture that looked sort of like this one:
“Okay,” I tell myself, “it’s definitely a Grand Diver.” I nodded, pleased with myself for my deductive powers.
Yep, old Sherlock’s got nothing on me.
The next shot reconfirms this; you could see the ‘Diver Dan’ / upside-down toilet symbol on the solid end link, which, interestingly, attaches a rubber-and-steel bracelet to the case. I couldn’t help but wonder if maybe the owner had attached a Corduba bracelet to a standard Grand Diver case, but a closer look at the picture convinces me that it was manufactured this way. The fit was just too well executed to be anything else. And look at the very nice texturing on the dial; I hadn't ever seen dial details like this on a Grand Diver before, so it strengthened my belief that this was a unique style of Grand Diver that I'd somehow missed.
I silently move on to the next shot:
And that’s when the first, semi-spastic double-take happens.
I look a little closer and read ‘Model 7148, Swiss Made,’ and then, ‘Grand Diver Signature Collection.’
“This guy’s got a Swiss Made Grand Diver, and he’s selling it for 120 Smack-Air’s,” I say to myself, sotto voce (that’s “whispering,” for those of you in Rio Lindo and Perth-Fremantle), even though there’s no one else at home to hear me.
A second, and then a third double-take follow, and then comes the unavoidable interior debate over what’s right and what’s wrong.
“Maybe I should message the guy and tell him he’s selling this watch for far too less,” my nice half says.
“And maybe you should go @#$% in your hat,” my less-than-nice half responds, using that don’t-be-a-dad-blamed-MORON voice I’ve come to know so well over the years. “If he wants a buck-twenty for it, then PAY the man a buck-twenty and be done with it.”
“Sure, and why not go and put chocolate Ex-Lax in the wife’s Special K ‘Chocolaty Delight’ cereal while you’re at it?” my good half responds.
“Are you SURE you’re my GOOD half?” I ask suspiciously.
My rotten half says nothing, but I can sense his evil little grin as he contemplates what his opposite number has just said.
I take another look at the watch:
“Heck, it IS a nice-looking watch,” I say to myself.
“That’s RIGHT,” says my nasty side. “And it should be YOURS, especially if this gork only wants 120 smacks!”
“There you go again,” says my nice side, throwing in a few “tsk’s” for good measure. “Paying so little would be just like STEALING. And you know I’m right!”
I answer this by saying, “Yeah, that’s what Barry Goldwater used to say, and look what they did to HIM–“
“WHO?” they both ask in unison.
“Oh, just SHUT UP, both of you!” I say. “You’re each the EXACT same age as I am. And, you know something ELSE?” I ask. “You’re both getting to be as smart-arsed as that mouthy goof, Conj--”
I caught myself before I could go any further, then shook my head disgustedly and looked back at my laptop’s somewhat grainy LCD screen.
“Well, what do you two galoot’s think?” I ask, as if I didn’t already know the answer.
They say nothing.
“WELL? How ‘BOUT it?”
I look around the room, trying to sound nonchalant as I whistled an old Elton John tune about a girl gambler, ‘Jenny & the Bets.’
And STILL nothing.
I took one last glance over my shoulder, then hit the “Buy it Now” button. Good. Then I was sent to PayPeel, where they peeled away $120 from my bank account. I gave two bucks to a charity for wayward labradoodles, and then I was done.
Fast forward a week or so, and there I am, reading yet another e-book, this one a rather dry tome by Stephen Hawking, entitled “You Jamokes Don’t Wanna Be Around Here in a Million Years; TRUST Me.”
And, suddenly, the doorbell rings. My missus is out shopping, so I head off to the front door.
It’s the mail guy. And he’s got a PACKAGE!
I sign for it, then run upstairs to my office. I tear open the package, and there it is; my new-to-me Grand Diver, with the Swiss movement and Swiss rubber-and-steel-barrel bracelet! I slip it on, and it fits me perfectly, meaning that the spare links can stay in their little yellow box for now.
And then I take a good look at my latest acquisition:
“Not bad, “ I say to myself. “Not bad at ALL.”
“WHAT’s not bad?” asks my wife, her all-too-familiar voice coming unexpectedly from behind me.
I have a moment to think fleetingly of poor old Wyle E. Coyote, hovering momentarily over an impossibly deep gorge and holding a small sign on which “HELP” is written in crudely drawn letters, and THAT’s when she says,
“HEY! Is THAT a new WATCH?"
Many thanks for dropping by and having a look.
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