View Full Version : Why do I kill watches?

03-04-2003, 03:52 PM
I can't wear a watch, because between 2 hours to 2 months of putting them on, they die, never to be resurected. Battery changes don't help.

Wind up watches don't die, but they won't keep proper time.

Someone suggested that I have some sort of weird magnetic thing going on - anyone have any thoughts?

03-04-2003, 04:09 PM
Magnetism (http://old.timezone.com/WebPages/Features/TZEssays/Mycroft/FatalAttractionInWatches.html) affects the movement in the watches you buy?

03-04-2003, 04:15 PM
What do you do for a living ?

03-04-2003, 04:29 PM
Ever had a near death experience ? This link (http://www.mindspring.com/~scottr/nde/watches.html) has anecdotal evidence of folks having the same problem after having a NDE. No explanation as to why though.

03-04-2003, 04:35 PM
Chalk, I work at a university, but this has been happening since as long as I can remember.

Hiya, Gut - I haven't seen you around much lately. :)

No, no near death experiences of any sort.

Shibb I dunno - some people have suggested that I am the problem, as opposed to exposure to some sort of external magnetic force.

03-04-2003, 04:41 PM
You kill watches because you observe the biblical precept (Exodus 22:17) "Thou shalt not allow a watch to live."

Carry on.

Zev Steinhardt

03-04-2003, 04:45 PM
I'm afraid I can't tell you why, but I have known other people with this problem, including one of my sisters. So you're not alone with your weird 'watch-stopping powers'. :D

03-04-2003, 04:49 PM
Originally posted by zev_steinhardt
You kill watches because you observe the biblical precept (Exodus 22:17) "Thou shalt not allow a watch to live."

Oh, right. I was wondering if that could be it.

03-04-2003, 05:12 PM
Alice - I figured you'd get some people who know someone who has the same "problem." I thinkwhat you have is sometimes called "a coincidence." I think you also have what is sometimes referred to as "a cheap watch." After years of looking closely, it seems that scientists have determined that people don't have the ability to rescind or otherwise override the laws of nature. I'm willing to bet that if you were to plunk down a large amount of lucre for a truly well-made timepiece, that you would find that it would run just fine. I'd love to see what Lucien-Piccard or Rolex would say about one of their chronographs just stopping after about two months. I'm guessing it doesn't happen. I think you have had a run of bad luck and that that, combined with your penchant for saving money on watches - because they keep stopping! - have led you to believe you are possessed of a physique that has super powers. You may have a wonderful body, but that's not one of its features. (I did know a woman who had a face that could do what you seem to be able to do, however.)

03-04-2003, 05:20 PM
Originally posted by alice_in_wonderland

Hiya, Gut - I haven't seen you around much lately. :)

I was abducted by EverQuest about 7 months ago so I post even less frequently than before. *waves*

03-04-2003, 05:27 PM
Unless you are shuffling your feet, have long hair and wear synthetic body stockings it's unlikely you are killing the watches. If you do all of the aforementioned you will kill electronic watches more quickly than the norm.

Most likely reasons are:

1: You don't choose/get as gifts truly high quality watches

2: You get them wet

3: You are slightly clumsy (an endearing trait in a woman) and accidently hit them on things all the time

4: You are a rage-a-holic and puching your angry little fists of fury through sheetrock walls has decreased the watches expected lifetime.

5: Random chance

03-04-2003, 06:37 PM
Some people are convinced that they:

- Experience far more "static shocks" than everyone else
- Kill far more digital watches than everyone else
- See far more streetlights turning off at night than everyone else

These might have totally mundane explanations. Or, they might be misperceptions and coincidences. Or, they be genuine anomalies which lead to new discoveries in physics. Either way, people constantly type them in here:

Report your unusual phenomena

03-04-2003, 07:34 PM
I seem to kill watches too (the longest lasting one was almost a whole year! Ooh! The fastest to die was about a month.) As pointed out here, though, I haven't tried wearing a Rolex... so, if anyone is willing to give me one, I'd try it out and see how long it lasts. Hardy-har.

I'm feeling lucky about my current watch. It's lasted about half a year thus far, and hopefully keeps going. It's from a kiddy meal at McDonald's, even. So perhaps I wasn't buying cheap enough. :)

I don't think it's magical or mystical in any way... I just don't have good luck with watches.

03-04-2003, 08:31 PM
I had trouble w/watches until I got 1 that had a rubber backing. The only trouble I have is that I make them run fast. It's the static electricity I seem to conduct.

I shock everyone in the office, and when I go to open facility doors w/my keys, yeouch, you should see the sparks fly. I have to touch a wall or the door handle to ground myself; if I don't I can get sparks jumping out 2 inches to the key and I feel it to my elbow.

03-04-2003, 09:48 PM
Don't listen to these bubble heads who assume you've spent $4 on a watch (or perhaps it's because they can buy a Rolex that doesn't come from the arm of some guy in Times Square.....) I have the saem problem - have all my life, my brother too. He carries a pocketwatch, I have one of those little things that are supposed to go on a necklace but I carry it in my purse. Yes, I have killed digital, kinetic, wind up, timex, calvin klein, seiko, gucci - pretty much everything I could afford to try. (never tried a Rolex but if you'd like to buy me one to prove me wrong, I will gladly try) I have never known why - just thought I was destined (Biblically or not) to not know the time.

03-04-2003, 09:51 PM
I should point out that I had this problem until I got a Tag Heuer as a college graduation present. It also stopped within the first few months. Then I sent it away to Switzerland to get it fixed (repair cost $135 in 1989) and it has run very smoothly ever since. It needed a new battery.

So the good news is that a truly expensive watch will probably fix this. But it may be cheaper to just keep buying cheap watches and tossing them when they stop.

Shirley Ujest
03-04-2003, 10:01 PM
My aunt and uncle ( siblings) both kill watches. My aunt gave up years ago trying. My uncle hasn't.

03-04-2003, 11:32 PM
I currently have about 15 dead watches. They include:

A Monet (about $500)
A Gucci (about $650)
A couple of Timexes (between $70-$150)
A Tag Heuer (about $1,300)
A Mickey Mouse (about $200)
A Storm (about $300)
A Fossill (about $150)

So, I dunno how much I'm supposed to spend on a watch. I will admit that the Tag lasted longer than any of them.

Now - a coincidence, you say? It's a hulluva big coincidence, if you ask me.

03-04-2003, 11:40 PM
My mom killed watches and the occasional toaster, and ruined tv and radio reception. It was sort of spooky.

03-04-2003, 11:42 PM
Actually, I've been known to kill a pager or two as well.

03-04-2003, 11:42 PM
Ex son in law. You could take any watch you have, lay it on his rist and it will stop. Yeah, he is weird.
Of course it is just a cowinky dink. :: shrug ::::

03-05-2003, 09:45 AM
A guy here killed laptops. That got expensive after a while. I was glad to see him leave.

03-05-2003, 10:50 AM
My father gave me his watch to replace the battery since it had stopped. I wore it so I wouldn't forget and (of course) forgot anyway. When I returned, though, the watch had started again so I didn't bother telling him and it lasted at least a year (I don't know after that; just that he didn't replace the battery within that time).

So send me your poor, your tired, your crippled watches... :)

03-05-2003, 01:12 PM
Mechanical watches are sensitive to physical shock such as dropping on the floor. I might also be concerned if you are using a hammer in the same hand where your watch is located. An expensive, good quality watch can be repaired for much less than its value. I would do so and ask the repair person exactly where the problem was. Also remember that a mechanical watch should be cleaned and adjusted periodically, say every 3 or 4 years. Typically, a watch begins to run faster when it needs a cleaning.

In contrast, an all-electronic LCD watch is not sensitive to either physical or electrical shock and, within reason, are water proof and never needs cleaning. I am really surprized that these are a problem as well.

03-05-2003, 01:22 PM
Funny... I have the opposite effect. I ressurect watches and other electronic gear. Ive literally fixed (some) computers, vcrs and clocks just by opening their cases.

The price of the watch isnt a determining factor in the ruggedness and reliability of a watch. Try buying a sports watch that is rated at around 200M diving underwater. Be sure to change the battery every 2 years. If it dies in less than a few months, the store should pop a new battery in for free.

03-05-2003, 02:33 PM
Mrs. Z has the same problem as does her Grandmother. Both of them have killed many timepieces and I assume that her Grandmother had mechanical watches. Mrs. Z's dad was very frustrated by this and tried many brands and tried to get them fixed, all to no avail.

I know Mrs. Z didn't swing a hammer frequently as a young girl but I will admit that she is a little on the clumsy side. However I'm just as clumsy and I've never had that problem.

I like to think that she is allergic to time.

03-05-2003, 03:01 PM
Interestingly, I am usually very prompt.

However, I think some people are missing the point. Any watch will die if I wear it. A new battery will not make it work. Cleaning will not make it work. Repair will not make it work.

If you have a dead guy, giving him a healthy diet, a bath and a physical are not going to bring him back. Do you see where I'm going with this? These watches are DEAD. Done. Finito. The fat lady has sung.

03-05-2003, 04:47 PM
Maybe they need to get a sundial watch?

03-05-2003, 05:29 PM
I'm afraid I can't offer any insight other then I've seen it to. My Girlfriend can kill a watch in a week. She also seems to be a walking static battery (she's to stay at least 10 paces from any open computer in our house) so that may have something to do with it

03-05-2003, 05:36 PM
I have a friend who not only routinely kills brand new watches, but also runs through batteries at an incredible rate - her Walkman, her cell phone, her cordless phone, you name it.

She also blew light bulbs while she was pregnant. (Get your mind out of the gutter, you know what I mean.) She went through more lightbulbs during her pregnancy than most people use in five years - incandescents AND fluorescents.

03-06-2003, 12:05 AM
I'm torn between the "It's what you do/where you go" crowd and the "co-incidence" group.
My parents gave me an inexpensive (but nice) Timex digital watch, (lap, alarm, timer) and it's lasted me almost a decade now. Replaced the strap 5 times, but I wear it every day, in pools, doing sports, messing with machines, etc. I recall performing surgery on it once after a displaced battery holder caused a short, but that's it. Perhaps you should perform autopsies on your equipment and get back to us? :)

03-06-2003, 01:48 AM
Nanoda, not to be rude or anything, but what on earth does your one, anecdotal watch story have to do with me?

Dude - I have an N of 17, a mean of 2.3 months and a standard deviation of 8.3 days. I have some serious, hard core data here.

I work in an office. I look at a computer. I pay bills and set up conferences. There is no hammering. No nailing. No heavy equipment. No submersion in water. No bizzarre chemicals. Just me, in my office, and yet these beasts continue to die.

I'm sorry, but the "It's a coincidence" group are out to lunch - some weird ass thing is going on, and I'm interested to know what it is.

did I mention I can kill a cell phone at 5 paces?

Larry Mudd
03-06-2003, 01:56 AM
More anecdotal commentary:

I have this problem, too. At first I thought it was because I bought cheap watches, so I bought two relatively pricey ones in succession. Neither of them lasted more than a month. My last attempt at carrying a timepiece was a gold pocketwatch. (Brand new, from a decent jewellery store.) It told me what time it was-- once. Now it's correct twice a day, like all those that went before it.

I've never had a "Near-death experience," but I've been having more and more "Near-life experiences."

I can't offer any speculation as to why it happens. I don't get a lot of static shocks, and I am and have historically been only slightly less sedentary than the Sphinx, so they weren't getting banged up.

Evil djinns or the intervention of Loki seem equally plausible at this point. I'm used to peering into shop windows in the hopes of stealing a glance at a clock when I'm on my way to appointments.

03-06-2003, 09:03 AM

My wife does the same thing to quartz watches only, so far as we can tell. I got her a mechanical kinetic watch (Seiko) and that has worked longer than anything else. We never tried digital watches, just dial watches before.

If you separated her from the watch for a couple of weeks, it would start up again.