Monday, February 4, 2013
Thanks to a fabulous watchmaker not far from here, my 1919 Elgin is all shiny and in working order. All it needed, he said, was some cleaning and a little oil. Such little things that kept it non-functional for half a century or more. The cool thing about this watch? They made a similar model for several years prior to WWI. When I went to view the Titanic exhibit at the Henry Ford Museum this year, I saw almost the exact same watch--an artifact recovered from the wreckage. Even the stretchy bracelet was the same, which came as another surprise. I hadn't realized that part was original. That makes the watch all that much cooler. And now I can actually wear it. Happy sigh. Since the holidays, the spouse has taken in his great-grandfather's pocket watch, and that's now all shiny and happy too. Ask him about it next time you see him in steampunk garb.
What got me thinking, though, was something this very talented craftsman said. There's no one up and coming to replace him. The business is still a father-son one, but his father is in his eighties, and he still does the fine work on the antique watches, while the son--a baby boomer himself, so not exactly a youth--handles on-the-spot maintenance and the bigger antique clocks as well as minding the store. Watchmaker or clockmaker is an endangered craft in a disposable, micro-circuit era. Kids the age of my offspring (early 20's) aren't even all that familiar with an analog clock, let alone a watch you have to wind every day.
When one of my sons wants to refurbish their great-great-grandfather's watch, where are they going to take it? Is anyone going to know how to fix one? Or that grandfather clock they found in an antique store. Will someone be able to fix that? It doesn't look like there will be anyone in my community. which is really rather sad.
So what other professions are becoming obsolete in our lifetime? And is that just part of the natural cycle of things? Or will the world be a little bit sadder when the knowledge is gone?
Now for news: Woo hoo! Kilts & Kraken won the Science Fiction Romance Galaxy Award for Genre-Mash-ups. It's good to know that readers appreciate what I do.
In other news, the new, revised and longer version of Nailed, contemporary erotic romance with paranormal touches, comes out next Wednesday, Feb. 13, from Resplendence Publishing. I'm unveiling the cover tomorrow, Tues 2/5, over at the Naughty Author Chicks blog, so stop by and check it out. Hero Warner Beckett can fix my roof anytime.
Friday I'll have author Cris Anson on the blog. Have a great week!