What time is it kids? It’s Howdy Doody time. Just an old 1950s TV reference for my older-than-dirt followers—you know who you are. Younger followers can click on the Howdy Doody link and learn. Actually it’s Über-nerd time again. Yep—more about watches or in this case how they’re worn. Please feel free to click out of this post if you’re not interested (and frankly most of you probably aren’t). But as stated so many times before: I write mainly for myself and everyone else is just along for the ride—however, I hope it’s an enjoyable ride from time-to-time (I know it is for me).
Yesterday morning brother Joel noticed that I was wearing a different watch on each wrist (2 wrists = 2 watches). Über-nerd, right? Right. I told him I was doing a Schwarzkopf—the practice of wearing two watches has come to be known (in watch aficionado circles) as doing a Schwarzkopf. General H. Norman Schwarzkopf Jr. (Desert Storm) was known for his practice of wearing two watches. Schwarzkopf was the real deal and you will find among his many military awards and decorations: 3 – Silver Stars, 3 – Bronze Stars with Combat V and 2 – Purple Hearts.
I always wore two watches during the [Gulf] war. The one on my left arm was set on Saudi Arabian time and the Seiko on my right arm was set on Eastern Standard Time. That way I could quickly glance at my watches and instantly know the time in both Saudi Arabia and Washington, D.C.
H. Norman Schwarzkopf Jr. – General, U.S. Army (Retired)
General Schwarzkopf was not only a warrior but an intellectual genius with an IQ that put him in Mensa (a little known fact). In the photo above you can see Schwarzkopf wearing a watch on each wrist—the Seiko worn on his right arm was a SKX009 Diver with an original cost of under $200 USD (at auction his watch sold for $11,000 USD). By way of comparison Paul Newman’s Rolex Daytona was recently sold at auction for the astronomical sum of $17.8-Million U.S. Dollars. I love watches but at $17.8-million U.S. Dollars I think I would take a pass.
His second watch [worn on his left arm] is a bit more of an interesting, though logical choice. It strongly appears that General Norman Schwarzkopf also wore a Rolex. It is unclear exactly what model, but it is probably a two-tone (steel and gold) Rolex Day-Date (more likely it was a Rolex Date-Just). However, a reader pointed out that Rolex does not actually officially make two-tone Day-Date models. This watch is also known as the Rolex President (because it was historically worn by several US Presidents). You can read the entire article here if you’re interested.
So why, as a self-professed Über-nerd, have I taken up the recent practice of wearing two watches? Of doing a Schwarzkopf? One obvious reason is that General Schwarzkopf is a hero of mine. Sure he was Army and I’m a Marine but Stormin’ Norman was a warrior. He was a no bullshit fighter and leader of men—I didn’t always agree with him politically, especially during the Bush years, but he was a man deserving immense respect. So partly it’s an homage to him. Also it’s because both of my watches are mechanical automatic (self-winding) and need motion to keep them wound. And I’m a watch guy, I just love watches.