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Old 30 May 2018, 10:26 PM   #1
Etschell
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Meet a Rolex Forums Member #7 (June 2018) - Art1

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For part 7 of the Meet a Rolex Forums Member series I interviewed a member who reached out to me early on and which I did not know anything about. Art1, or Art, is a long time member of the Rolex Forums. More than anything else I enjoyed learning about him, his passion for life, family, business, traveling, the outdoors, history, art and of course Rolex. Being that we both are Floridians hopefully we will meet up sometime in the near future. Without further ado, on to the interview!

How did the Art and Mon proudly presents game come about? And the new iteration?

Actually it was Mon’s idea for us to come up with a game so we came up with a variation of one that was already going. I understand you met your Wife on the Rolex Forums. Tell me how did this happen and how long have you been together for? We met six years ago on the coffee shop section with many mutual interests. Art galleries, travel, the outdoors, gem stones, books, history, movies many things. We had an instant connection. We met in NYC. Got married on Lido Key near Sarasota, it was nice having our families there with us. We all stayed at the same place and had a blast. Mine from Florida and Michelle's from Ontario. Our families have become very close. I have become very close to my mother in law and Michelle is in Florida a lot helping my parents out. They (my parents) love her very much, like a daughter. Michelle and I are lucky that we can travel and visit places that interest us. We enjoy biking although I can't yet do the long distances Michelle can, and we go hiking quite a bit. We have a cottage on Georgian Bay and enjoy hiking there and on the Niagara Escarpment overlooking the water. We enjoy walking long distances along the Florida beaches as well. We recently hiked in the Pennsylvania Mountains and really enjoyed that. Our house in Canada is along the Grand River and there are many trails along that. We also enjoy hiking in Bar Harbor Maine and are going back again this fall. We also enjoy art galleries, especially MOMA in NYC and Dali in St. Pete Florida.
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What is it about Military history that you enjoy? Does it relate to your interest in Rolex history?

My favorite military history to study is the Vietnam War. As far as Rolex goes many guys wore them there and as we have seen some examples on the forum. In WW2 Rolex would sent any British officer (maybe pitot) in a German pow camp a watch payable upon his return to Britain after the war. We have seen some examples on the forum and it's fascinating. The letters are fascinating to read.

You and Michelle travel quite frequently. What is your favorite part about splitting time between Ontario and Florida?

We aren't yet snowbirds. We travel back and forth every two weeks on average and spend time in both locations. That eventually will change. It's interesting going between extremes so often. But within a few minutes we adapt. It's not uncommon for us to go between a blizzard and hot humid heat within a few ours. Customs has been and can be interesting. Some of the immigration officers are very interested in our situation and we get lots of questions. We were pulled aside once in the Toronto Pearson airport crossing an international border which should not be taken lightly.
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Like myself, you grew up playing sports (baseball, football and wrestling). What did you learn from playing sports?

My parents kept us very busy with sports at a young age. I ended up excelling at baseball and wrestling. I did play quarterback in football, but gave that up for wrestling once in high school. I started wresting at seven years old. It’s a very big sport and very competitive in PA. There was never an easy match and the practices were brutal. I fact they would not be allowed today. It's a one on one sport, this taught me to be resourceful and to think for myself. It's teaches you a lot to be in front of thousands of people one on one with an opponent who is trying his best to defeat you. There is no one to blame but yourself for failure to win or give 100%. This had helped me every day in my adult life to be disciplined and to be able to think for myself in difficult situations.

Do you have any favorite Rolex Forum members or those you look forward to seeing in real life?

I have met many, many people over the years. I've enjoyed spending time with Mon, he's very kind, witty, generous and smart. I spent a day at Epcot with Tom Kerr, his intensity, attention to detail and commitment to family was nice to see. I enjoyed Rafael, he's very nice and lives close by to me. It was interesting meeting James Dowling on three occasions. And Jeff Hess several times. I would like to meet Abdullah as I find him smart and interesting. I would like to meet Paul as we are the same age and it's interesting how that being said how our lives went in different directions. Also, him being alone in a fighter jet in a war zone fascinates me. One thing is flying a two seater. The other is being alone. He was alone.

Have you been to any Rolex Forum GTGs? How was that experience?

We used to hold big GTG years back in Orlando, Tampa, and NYC. I found them lots of fun meeting people from all over the world actually. There were several guys from England that Mon and I enjoyed hanging out with, two no longer post the other sadly has passed away. Most of the attendees are very nice people. It was amazing how we all just hand over our expensive watches for others to handle. I hope to get one going with the folks in Central Ontario.

For any Rolex Forum member who hasn't been to a GTG what are they missing out on?

You are missing out on meeting interesting people and trying on some very nice watches. There are no barriers at a GTG. Everyone is an equal. Sadly, real life isn't always like that.

What is Michelle's favorite Rolex (hers and yours)?

My wife's Rolex is a DateJust 31 with a WG bezel. Interesting how the large diamonds line up with the hours and the small ones right in between. She pointed that out to me. I like the diamond filled roman 6. She's owned a Platinum Yacht-Master, has a very nice Baume and Mercier and an eco-drive that she gave to her mother.
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When travelling what is your go to watch?

I've had many Rolex watches but now wear the Explorer. It's my favorite Rolex watch. To me it's what a watch was meant to be. It's as perfect as a watch can be. I have the newer version. My next favorite is the Sub LV. I've had two of them.

In general, how did you become interested in automatic wrist watches?

As a young boy I loved the show Sea Hunt. I was fascinated with how the divers could wear a watch under water. I begged my parents for a watch and got a Timex automatic for Christmas at age six. Since then I've always had a watch.

What was your first Rolex, how did you get it, and what led you to acquire it?

My first Rolex was a blue TT Submariner. I loved the blue. I bought it new at Mayors. At the time it wasn't an easy watch to find in FL. I became friends with the sales man there and that relationship had allowed me to but some very hard to get models and will in the future should I want another.

What separates Rolex from other Swiss luxury watch brands?

Just love Rolex watches. The heft and quality. Just enough bling. I love the resale factor. The history. The tool watches are really made to do exactly what they were meant to. No fooling around, they aren't gimmicky.

Why did you join the Rolex Forums? Why did you stick around?

I joined this forum after spending years on TZ. They became too stuffy. Lots of us guys left. Jocke, Mon, Tom and many others. I think the mods do a good job. It's an easy going place.

What do you look for in a Rolex? What draws you to a particular reference?

Simplicity and readability. I had a steel Daytona and found it too difficult to read so I sold it.

In your current collection, if you had to choose what is your favorite watch and why?

Easily the Explorer. It is what a watch was meant to be. Masculine, easy to read, deep black dial and just enough bling with out going over the top. Excellent bracelet. The comfort link is so handy when I go from the hot to cold like I do.
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What other brands outside of Rolex interest you and what about the brand interests you?

I have an older Breitling Chronomat that I like. The original Blackbird model. I've never seen another one like it. I also have an appreciation for Omega.

What is your grail Rolex and when do you plan on acquiring it?

I let both of my LV Subs go. I eventually would like another. I have no interest in precious metal.

What Rolex do you plan on buying next?

New - another GMT with the black bezel. I've had the BLNR. Used - the LV.

What is the one Rolex you wish you hadn't sold or traded and why?

The LV. Something about the contrast of the green bezel and the deep black dial. In Florida I see a lot of them. Outside of being a Rolex enthusiast / WIS what are some of your interests and how do they inter-relate to Rolex? I love to hike and bike and explore. Walk along the beach. My wife and I have hiked all over. Rolex is a perfect watch for these activities.
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How do you feel about the current state of the Rolex supply and demand issues?

Being in business myself I have done a lot of thinking about this situation, as to why Rolex would do this and what would I do if the decision was mine. It makes no sense to me. Rolex is going overboard with this. I feel very badly for the sales staff and the AD's who have invested in meeting the demands of Rolex in setting up their stores, and now have little stock to sell.

If you aren’t on the Rolex Forums you are probably....?

My wife and I travel a lot spending that time hiking and visiting Daytona Beach, St Augustine and our favorite Lido Key. We spend time at our family cottage on the Bruce Peninsula in Ontario. We also love Bar Harbor Maine. I enjoy my business and meet so many interesting people. My wife and I don't do much sitting around.
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What advice would you give to a younger watch collector like me?

Buy what you like. Not what others like. And consider re-sale value.

They say there is a story behind every Rolex. What is a story behind one of yours owned past or presently?

My Explorer, my wife and I purchased ours together in Ontario. That means a lot to me.
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Old 30 May 2018, 10:35 PM   #2
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Nice interview Eliot.
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Old 30 May 2018, 11:24 PM   #3
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Great interview as always, thank you!
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Old 30 May 2018, 11:41 PM   #4
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Another great interview!! Well done, gentlemen.
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Old 30 May 2018, 11:52 PM   #5
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Nice interview
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Old 31 May 2018, 12:37 AM   #6
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Excellent write up
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Old 31 May 2018, 12:41 AM   #7
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Old 31 May 2018, 12:49 AM   #8
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Another great interview and write up!!


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Old 31 May 2018, 01:58 AM   #9
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Old 31 May 2018, 02:16 AM   #10
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Another excellent interview Eliot. Love reading these. Thank you for the continuous work.
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Old 31 May 2018, 02:20 AM   #11
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Fantastic read! Thank you for sharing!!!
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Old 31 May 2018, 02:33 AM   #12
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Another nice interview, thanks for taking the time!
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Old 31 May 2018, 02:38 AM   #13
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Great interview as usually Eliot

Art, hope to meet you one day soon
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Old 31 May 2018, 02:38 AM   #14
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Bravo! Very interesting write up. Thank You!
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Old 31 May 2018, 02:46 AM   #15
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Well Done. A great read!
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Old 31 May 2018, 03:28 AM   #16
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Well done as always.
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Old 31 May 2018, 03:39 AM   #17
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Nicely done, Eliot It's great getting to know things about forum members this way.
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Old 31 May 2018, 03:39 AM   #18
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Another wonderful interview, Elliott. It's always nice to put a face on a handle.
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Old 31 May 2018, 03:55 AM   #19
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Great Interview gents!!!!
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Old 31 May 2018, 04:11 AM   #20
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Awesome write up !!
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Old 31 May 2018, 04:20 AM   #21
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Great interview! keep the series going
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Old 31 May 2018, 04:58 AM   #22
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Awesome write up
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Old 31 May 2018, 05:40 AM   #23
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Art is a diamond geezer.
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Old 31 May 2018, 06:19 AM   #24
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Great interview as usually Eliot

Art, hope to meet you one day soon
We will be around next weekend Brian, I'll text you and see what's up.
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Old 31 May 2018, 07:05 AM   #25
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Excellent read. Thank you both.
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Old 31 May 2018, 07:31 AM   #26
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Great interview!! I have communicated with Art a couple of times via PM and my first impressions were bang on....good guy
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Old 31 May 2018, 08:05 AM   #27
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I really enjoy these!! Another great one.

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Old 31 May 2018, 08:08 AM   #28
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I really enjoy these!! Another great one.

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Did you notice the Pittsburgh picture at the point!
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Old 31 May 2018, 08:09 AM   #29
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Great interview!! I have communicated with Art a couple of times via PM and my first impressions were bang on....good guy
Thanks! Hope to meet you this summer in Orlando !
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Old 31 May 2018, 08:12 AM   #30
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Did you notice the Pittsburgh picture at the point!
That was my favorite part! Looks like a pretty standard western PA grey day haha

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