We made it! One of the weirdest years in history is (finally) over, and here we are basking in the glow of a brand new one. We’re hoping for a big 2021 here at HODINKEE, and what better way to start the year off than with some watch resolutions?
Last year, we participated in a similar exercise to varying degrees of success. Read on to see what this year has in store for the editors – as well as how we all did on our 2020 resolutions.
Cara Barrett: Time – It’s How You Spend It
I didn’t keep my resolution from last year (don’t @ me, this year was weird). But 2020 taught me so much: how to make bread, how to make alternate plans when the ones you have don’t work out, how to sit still, how to be truly grateful, and how to value time. I found myself this year spending endless days/months with family and loved ones (sometimes in tight quarters) creating mundane memories I will always cherish. Last year, and the year before that, the madness of travel and work gave me no time for my family, my loved ones, or even myself. So my resolution for 2021 has nothing to do with watches per se, but rather what they represent: the value of time. I hope that when this wild year ends and the pandemic fades into the distance, I’ll continue to value what is most precious to us all – time and who you spend it with.
Jack Forster: Put The Un In Fun
One thing you apparently get a lot of in a year with a pandemic is irony. And no sooner had the virtual ink dried on my resolution for 2020, which was to just have more dad-gum fun with this hobby, than we were swept out of our office and into quarantine, making the whole business of having fun with anything, much less watches, an uphill battle. This doesn’t mean 2020 was The Year Without Fun, horologically speaking, but after working from home all these months, I think I’m more inclined towards gratitude than hedonism. It is from this back-to-basics perspective that I give you my resolution for 2021: To wear one watch as much as possible. In 2020, I bounced from one watch to another with a restlessness born of anxiety, but I hope in 2021 to return to a more monogamous relationship with watches – and yes, to reconnecting to the joy of having a single daily driver. (Not gonna stop double-wristing with the Apple Watch though. It is tons of fun to watch your heart rate spike every time you read the news).
Jon Bues: Wear All My Watches!
Last year, I resolved to wear more of my watches. I started off in pretty good form, switching back and forth between my two GMTs (Grand Seiko and Rolex), and a Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight. These are three watches I see myself owning forever. As I settled down to write Reference Points on the GMT-Master in March, I channeled the relevant watch in my collection: my Batman. Then COVID struck, I switched out of work clothes and into T-shirts and shorts, and the few dressy pieces I’d hoped to wear more often just kind of languished. (I can’t even remember the last time I wore a sport coat.) Now, the vaccines are here, and it looks like life will return to normal at some point in 2021. My pledge is to make good on my resolution from a year ago and enjoy more of my watches on a more regular basis. And if I don’t, I resolve to find new homes for those I don’t wear at all. Some folks get lots of satisfaction just from having watches in a safe. I’m not one of them.
Cole Pennington: Find The People Behind The Product
My 2020 resolution was to downsize and make more memories with fewer watches. I did that.
My 2021 resolution is to upsize my stories about people, and focus more on capturing their memories through the lens of a watch. If you revisit some of my favorite 2020 stories — the ones on Bret Gilliam, Major Curran, Leslie Scott, and Dr. Tetsuya Torii — you’ll see that sometimes the actual watch is the least interesting part. On a more personal note, I’ve been here at HODINKEE just about two years now, and I’m finally not the new guy anymore (Danny Milton is the “new guy,” and he’s absolutely crushing it). I’ve learned more about the industry than I could’ve dreamed possible, and I’m incredibly grateful for it all.
Danny Milton: Appreciate The Underappreciated
This was my first year at HODINKEE, and what a year it was. For starters, I was at HODINKEE HQ, seated at my desk, for all of four days before WFH began. Somehow, I still managed to pull off an In-Depth story on the Rolex Explorer 14270. It was an opportunity for me to shed light on what I considered to be a hidden gem in the watch world – almost so obvious that it is consistently overlooked. My resolution for the coming year is twofold. One, I want to wear my own Explorer more often (it basically feels like the only watch I’ll ever need anyway) and create new memories with it. Secondly, I’d like to write more stories on other underappreciated watches out there. These are watches many of us love, and I want to show ’em the love they deserve.
Stephen Pulvirent: Expect The Unexpected
Last year, I vowed to focus more on the emotional content of watches and the stories they tell than the objects themselves. I’ve done a pretty decent job at that, and I plan to keep it going well into 2021. But I want to add a wrinkle here. I’m very fortunate to have watches from many storied brands in my collection: Rolex, IWC, Grand Seiko, etc. In the year ahead, I want to look a little further afield. I want to hunt down the rare, unusual, and esoteric. One of the most fun things about watches as a hobby is that there’s always more to learn, always more to discover, and I want to spend 2021 trying to dig a little deeper and enjoy the unexpected things I find along the way. That could be a new brand, an unknown watchmaker, or a strange piece from a brand I think I know inside and out. Sometimes it might mean adding a piece to my collection, and other times, it might mean writing a story for all of you. Either way, I’m excited to continue on this journey together.
James Stacey: Stay Gold
I’d entirely forgotten about my 2020 resolution until after I’d accidentally fulfilled it. For those with a memory similar to mine, my 2020 resolution was to delve deeper into the world of gold watches. And as luck would have it, I just recently took delivery of my first solid gold watch, a vintage ark rose gold. While not the heftiest of solid-gold watches, this lovely old chronograph was inexpensive and came via a generous offer from an old friend. After speaking about my chronograph-based watch discomfort zone on episode 126 of The Grey NATO, I was thrilled to stone two birds at once with this lovely mid-century (and oh-so-gold) chronograph.
For 2021, my resolution is to further explore the watch world beyond the usual genres and topics that I’ve followed for the past several years. In opening my cold heart to the warmth of gold, I learned that a wider outlook brings all sorts of new experiences. Let’s hope that 2021 plays along.