Watch your step

posted Jul 11, 2012, 6:36 PM by Paul Wagner
A few years ago P bought himself the perfect back[packing watch.. It was a Casio Pathfinder Solar Atomic Watch PAW500T-7V C432--complete with solar power, so that it never needed winding or a battery.  And it provided an amazing amount of information:  barometric pressure, altitude, dual time zones, alarms, stopwatch, and it even got its time signal direct from the atomic clock in Colorado, so that it was never off by even a second.
Like we said, an amazing watch. 
P wore it for years, and it worked like a charm.  It did all of the above and more. He used it to estimate the miles per hour on our hikes, and the elevation gains on the trail.  He even used the lighted dial to see in the dark form time to time. 
It was so handsome that P began to wear it everywhere, not just hiking.  It looked good, it worked well, and it never needed a thing.  He began to forget about his other watches.  He didn't wind them, and didn't ever replace their batteries.  He took the Casio hiking and wore it with his tuxedo.  It became part of his daily ritual.
And then one day he banged his amazing Casio watch on the wall...and it stopped working. 
Not entirely, mind you, just everything except the time-keeping function.  It wouldn't read altitude or barometric pressure.  It wouldn't set the alarm.  It wouldn't provide dual time zones.  Heck, it wouldn't even light the dial after dark. It was like losing an old friend.
P tried everything he could think of to fix it.  He left it in the sun to get a good dose of solar power.  He pushed every button.  He pushed some of them three times, or held them for five seconds, or held them in combination with other buttons for ten seconds.  He even tried reading the directions. 
Nothing worked.  The watch told him exactly what time it was, and nothing else. 
He was so disappointed.  He had wanted this to be the last watch he ever bought.  And so he tried looking for another one--but they are no longer for sale.  There are newer, more expensive models, but he didn't want one of them.  He looked high and low, and finally found one seller in Ebay that still had one of these amazing watches.
He snapped it up immediately, and had it shipped to his house.   It arrived on time, and he eagerly opened the box.
There it was, just like the old one--in perfect condition.  He could hardly wait to get it on his wrist.
And so he quickly reached to take off his old watch...and was stunned to see that it now offered all the functions that it had withheld for the past two weeks.  All the buttons worked.  The altimeter was accurate.  And every single function worked exactly as it should..  P fiddled with it, trying to get it to malfunction.
No dice.  The watch had clearly received the message, and was now on its absolutely best behavior.  It still fit perfectly, and still looks good.
So P now has two of these amazing watches.  One has the band set exactly for his wrist size, and it works perfectly. 
And the other sits in its shiny new case on the dresser. 
Just in case the first watch gets any ideas.