Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Status safari: expensive, amusing jackassery at Mary's Marvelous in Amagansett

I still love the food at Marty's (especially for the prices) but will admit that Mary's Marvelous wins big in the people-watching department. We saw Alec Baldwin there last month. As Ivan noted, he was wearing *pants that unzipped at the knees to become shorts*. (Ivy, mind blown: "Where does a guy like that even get such a garment!?" I'm sure he's going to rush out and buy some). So we were there for breakfast the day before yesterday and, looming out of the pre-caffinated chaos I saw a guy, or rather I saw a watch. Lately Ivan has been schooling me in the secret language of watches, and this one was gold and shiny with a leather band and I thought that a person who could read the code would have a lot to say about this door-knocker. Turns out the watch was a Panerai, and the guy was wearing a matching promotional cap for the watch. He also had a keychain sticking half out of his pocket so that everyone could see it was a keychain for a Maserati. Otherwise the outfit was classic prep: a braided belt, cargo shorts, tucked in white buttondown with a blue check. Now, an innocent like me would probably be impressed, but Ivan says that 1. it's only a grand a month to lease a Maserati, an option available to many wanna-bes and 2. the watch is a sucker purchase. An expensive watch can be an investment; there's a hot resale market and they hold their value well. But Panerai brand is sort of a fake. It was a military watch in the 40s and then fell into obscurity until recently being revived by a big ad campaign as a luxury brand. Its value hasn't held & grown over time; the ads have created a perception of a tradition of value but not the reality. Also, it's neither fish nor fowl, because it was a steel bracelet utilitarian thing that's now been tricked out in gold. Sort of silly. But deliciously silly!

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