Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Meeting Dr. Arthur Miller on The Streets Of San Francisco...

Dr. Arthur Miller

World-Famous Underwater Cave Diver & Archaeologist

The Streets Of San Francisco
...Every Rolex Stranger Is A Friend You Just Haven't Met Yet...
A Brilliant Life With Rolex Keeping His Time

I have a most interesting Rolex GTG story to share with you. As many of you know, I was born and raised in San Francisco, California and call it home to this day. A few weeks ago, I was out in San Francisco, in the Marina and I wandered into another pal of mine on Chestnut Street named Steve.

Steve was on his way to get some frozen yogurt and invited me to join him. We had been finished for a while and were having a great conversation. We got up to walk out and a man and his wife approached us and asked if we could direct them to DeLarossa Restaurant.

We pointed them down the street, and I got a quick glance of his watch which I instantly recognized, and I asked if he was wearing a Submariner? He said, yes and asked why I asked? I introduced myself and told him my name was Jake and that I publish Jake's Rolex World Magazine which he could find at I asked him if he was familiar with Jake's Rolex World and he said no, so of course I mentioned he should check it out.

All of a sudden his face lit up like a Christmas tree and he handed me his Rolex Submariner and said "It is a Red Submariner I bought at Tiffany & Company 38 years ago, in 1972 and I have never taken it off my wrist since then." Curiously, I asked what he meant when he said he never took if off? He insisted he wore it all the time, like a good luck charm, and pointed out that when he slept and showered and went diving he wore it.

My pal and this strangers wife and I were chatting it up (pretty good-like ;-) and they graciously invited us to join them for a late dinner. We accepted their kind invitation and sat down for dinner. The man introduced himself as Arthur and his wife as Lourdes.

After a lot of talk about Rolex, I learned that Arthur was Dr. Arthur Miller, the world-famous American SCUBA Diver, archaeologist, academic and historian!!! No wonder we were getting along so well since I am basically a Rolex historian and archeologist of sorts ;-) Can you hear the Raiders Of The Lost Ark/Indiana Jones theme-song starting to play?

It turns out that Arthur Miller is a specialist in pre-Columbian Latin Amarica art and specializes in Mesoamerica. Arthur's research expertise has been in the study of pre-Columbian mural artworks and their iconography. He bought his Rolex Submariner in 1972 because he also specialized in exploring underwater caves and wanted the best dive watch.

Arthur Miller has published many academic papers and books on the mural art of Mesoamerican cultures, including the Teotihuacan of central Mexico, the Zapotec tombs and sites in Oaxaca, and Maya sites along the eastern coastline of the Yucatan Peninsula.

Arthur graduated from Colby College in Maine in 1964 and the following year he completed his Master's Degree at the Ecole du Louve in Paris which was dedicated to anthropological and art history fields. In 1969 he completed his doctorate studies at Harvard and was awarded a Ph. D.

The photo below is a close up of Arthur Miller's trusted Red Rolex Submariner that has been his daily wearer for the last 38 years straight.

I took the wrist shot below of Arthur's Rolex Red Submariner [Reference 1680]. Of course I asked him if he bought it himself or if it was a gift? He told me he bought it himself at Tiffany and Company. I asked him if when he purchased the watch if he intentionally went out of his way to purchase it with the Tiffany & Co., designation on the dial?

He proudly responded "Oh yes!!!" I asked him why? He said "I had seen the movie, Breakfast At Tiffany's and as an artist I always really appreciated Tiffany & Co. I was also inspired by the early Tiffany & Company lamps and art, so I thought it would be really cool to have a Tiffany & Co. Rolex Submariner."

The Tiffany & Co., ad below shows the same model of Rolex Submariner that Arthur Miller purchased. Notice in 1974 it was only $445.

After dinner we walked outside and the Apple store was next door to the restaurant. I knew from our conversation Arthur and his wife were both Apple Mac users, so we stood in front of the Chestnut street Apple store and kept talking. I pulled out my iPhone and started taking photos of him and his really cool Rolex Submariner as seen throughout this story.

I remember thinking how cool it was to meet a professional cave diver who actually used his Rolex Submariner as a tool watch back in the 1970s and adored and appreciated it so much that he was bragging that he never took it of his wrist for the last 38 years straight!!!!

We also talked a bit about diving history and how the Rolex Submariner played a pioneering role, and I asked him about every historically famous diver, of which he was familiar with.

Of course, I kept and keep thinking about Maurice Chevalier's famous words from 1964 on Rolex people when he said:

"Like a genial hotelier, Rolex has introduced me to some of the nicest people. I ask about their Rolex and they ask about mine. It's as marvelous a conversation piece as it is a timepiece." –Maurice Chevalier (1964)

I must also add that it never ceases to amaze me how friendly people typically are who wear Rolex!!! I think it really goes to show that Rolex is not just a timepiece that tells you the time, but also a mind-set that tells you something about yourself. Rolex people seem to typically be fascinated with the world around them and by people, and I also noticed people who gravitate toward Rolex typically are very conscious of quality, detail and excellence.

Today, Arthur is retired from teaching and he has been pursuing his passion as a painter. He has his paintings on his website at Arthur was so inspired by his career and the ancient American cave paintings, he paints in a similar style. Arthur painted the following images:

Arthur and his wife spend their time living between Spain and Mexico today. Arthur and I agreed we would do a podcast interview in the future to talk about his amazing career. Arthur is the nephew of the famous author and artist, Henry Miller who wrote Tropic Of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Rolex Studio Shot Of The Day: Kyle's Rolex Explorer I

Rolex Studio Shot Of The Day
Kyle's Rolex Explorer I

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Rolex Vintage Bubblebacks: Fascinating Marketing Nomenclature

Rolex Vintage Bubblebacks
Fascinating Marketing Nomenclature

As I have mentioned before, Rolex design history was a exercise in experimentation coupled with the constant push to achieve new levels of innovation and quality, and to a large extent Rolex design and marketing threw everything they could think of at the wall and watched to see what stuck.

Rolex King Of Wings

These two next watches are fascinating examples of Rolex Bubbleback design and marketing nomenclature. This first model is named King Of Wings. That is an interesting name that obviously did not stick to the wall, but it is interesting non-the-less.

Rolex Sky-Rocket

This vintage Rolex Bubbleback has a really interesting name, Sky-Rocket!!! Reminds me of that famous 1970s song, that said "Sky rockets in flight–afternoon delight ;-)

Yet another interesting name that did not stick. I think this Rolex is probably from the early 1920s and the one above is probably from the 1930s. Of course Rolex made many different bubblebacks with fascinating names like the Rolex Unicorn and Rolex Victory.

Rolex Rocker: Ozzy Osbourne The Godfather Of Heavy Metal...

Rolex Rocker: Ozzy Osbourne
The Godfather Of Heavy Metal
Yellow Gold Rolex Daytona

Let's admit it. The Osbourne's–Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne–are in a class all by themselves. Ozzy was a pioneer in British Heavy Metal with his band Black Sabbath. You gotta love Ozzy!!!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Rolex Macro Shot Of The Day: White Gold Yacht-Master II

Rolex Macro Shot Of The Day
White Gold Yacht-Master II

Rolex Cosmosgraph Daytona...

Rolex Cosmograph Daytona
...Passionately Racing Through Time...

My pal, John Goldberger is the author of 100 Superlative Rolex Watches and he is a Rolex fanatic of the highest order!!! He just introduced this amazing Rolex Cosmograph Daytona video!!! John's Soundtrack for this video is so cool–I can't seem to stop listening to it–so turn the volume way up!!!!

1973 Tudor Chronograph Oysterdate Brochure Reference 7032: Home Plate Dial...

1973 Brochure
Tudor Chronograph Oysterdate
[Reference 7032: Home Plate Dial]

With all the interest around the all-new, retro Tudor Heritage Chrono that was introduced at BaselWorld Eduardo Raffelli from Buenos Aires, Argentina, who is a daily reader of Jake's Rolex World decided to send in this 1973 Tudor Oysterdate Chronograph Brochure from his collection.

Eduardo pointed out that in 1973, the Tudor Oysterdate Chronograph Reference 7032 sold for 480 Suisse Francs, which is $450 in U.S. Dollars.

The two images pictured above are from the brochure (pictured below) so you could see more detail.

The all-new, retro Tudor Heritage Chrono is based on the original 1970 Tudor Chronograph Oysterdate and you see them side by side in the photo below. The original 1970 version was 40mm and the all-new version is 42mm.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Bill Cosby & Rolex Say Goodbye To Robert Culp...

Bill Cosby & Rolex Say Goodbye To Robert Culp

Robert Culp who costarred on I Spy with Bill Cosby now belongs to the ages. Robert Culp was 79 years old and died unexpectedly this week after falling near his Hollywood Hills home.

Robert Culp and Bill Cosby not only co-starred on I Spy, but were great friends for the rest of their lives and the L.A. Times wrote a great article which covered an interview with Bill Cosby about his relationship with Robert Culp. The article mentioned Bill Cosby was shocked to hear of his pals death and spoke very warmly about their close friendship that went far beyond their on-screen partnership.

I Spy ran on TV for three seasons from 1965 to 1968 and both Robert Culp's character Kelly Robinson and Bill Cosby's character Alexander Scott but wore Pepsi GMT-Master watches on the show.

To the best of my knowledge, the only character on a TV show before them that wore a Rolex was Lloyd Bridges on SEA-HUNT.

I Spy was groundbreaking in the world of TV as it was the first have an African American actor in a lead role.

If you have been reading Jake's Rolex World for a long time, you know we used to have I Spy Saturday as a feature where I started with the first episode of I Spy and each Saturday we would watch an episode on order and I would do screen grabs of Robert Kulp and Bill Cosby sporing their trademark Pepsi Rolex GMT-Master watches.

I stopped I Spy Saturday because I did not have time to do all the historic research for Jake's Rolex World and do I Spy Saturday, but as soon as I get the chance I will bring back Flipper Friday, I Spy Saturday and Miami Vice Monday.

Of course, my goal is to document every screen shot from I Spy that had a Rolex GMT and I left off on Season 1, Episode 15, but here are some really cool shots. One of my favorite things from watching I Spy is how elegant and stylish Robert Culp and Bill Cosby were–very much like Steve McQueen from the same era!!!

I decided I would republish I Spy Saturday from Season 1, Episode 2 which was a gold mine of cool Rolex shots:

I Spy Saturday
Season 1 [Episode 2 : A Cup of Kindness]
Original Air Date: September 22, 1965

Welcome to the second I Spy Saturday on Jake's Rolex Watch Blog. Well it looks like we hit the jackpot in episode 2!!!! There is a tremendous amount of Rolex GMT Master exposure. So the way this works is I watch the episode first, do screen grabs of all the cool Rolex shots and then you can watch the episode if you like.

I was kind of shocked because in this episode we see 3 distinct timecheck wrist shots and they are all pretty clear. They almost appear to be a Rolex commercial, which is much better than the opposite–meaning, a fruitless search. The first two wrist shots are of Kelly's (Robert Culp) wrist and there is another one of Scotty's (Bill Cosby) later in this story.

It dawned on me yesterday when I was watching Flipper that the reason both Bill Cosby and Robert Culp's characters wear GMTs is because they are international travelers and since the GMT Master can keep track in two different time zones they must be keeping time in Hong Kong, where this episode is shot, as well as Pentagon time in Washington D.C.

There are two seemingly similar wrist shots above of Robert Culp's GMT because he looks at it in two completely different scenes.

I added this shot below because we can see that Robert Culp is wearing Vans slip-on style shoes which are really stylish today.

I think the fashion from I Spy was really cool. We see Bill Cosby wearing a high, mock T-Shirt like Tiger Woods always wears today–which is a really cool, mod look. We also see Kelly wearing a La Coste (Alligator shirt, not shown) as well as an ascot, and Scotty also wears a high-button-placement three piece suit. All great style if you ask me.

In this next shot we see Bill Cosby under the bed wearing his GMT Master.

In the next three photos we see wrist shots of Bill Cosby wearing his GMT Master.

In this last photo we see a close up screen shot of Bill Cosby's wrist sporting his GMT Master. I believe that Bill Cosby and Robert Culp's GMT Master models are identical and I think they are both wearing Rolex GMT Master [Reference 1675]. If I am wrong about the reference, please correct me.

If you want to watch this episode full screen on you computer screen hit the play button and one I Spy starts playing click the button in the upper right hand corner of the video window to make it go full screen. Enjoy!!!

Rest In Peace Robert Culp. You were one cool, funny, inspiring, charismatic, actor!!!

Jocke's BaselWorld 2010 Report...

Jocke's BaselWorld 2010 Report
Jocke [The Entity Numero Uno At The Tosser List]

Many people in the online Rolex world know Jocke from Sweden who is a Rolex fanatic and he is JJ's nemesis on All I can tell you is that Jocke and JJ make me laugh more than any great comedian with their constant back-and-forth jabbering.

I think that is one of the things that makes the online Rolex community so fun–the personalities and camaraderie. Think about it for a second, Jocke lives in Sweden and J.J. lives in New Zealand and I am writing this from San Francisco, California and you are reading this somewhere between these three places!?!?! The World Wide Web is really just that!!!

Define Rolex fanatic? O.K., Jock drove a van over 1000 miles from Sweden to Basel Switzerland to attend BaselWorld and it only took him 15 hours!!! Jocke is a really talented photographer and he always puts together his BaselWorld Report which is always fascinating.

You should check out his great BaselWorld 2010 report, and the thing I found most fascinating were his photos of the new Tudor Heritage Chrono. This first photo on the nylon strap with a racing strip is amazing!!!

I definitely prefer the black base dial (below) over the grey based dial (two pictures down). Dell Deaton from JamesBondWatches mentioned on March 17, 2010 that "Another James Bond Watch brand to be announced after Basel Watch Fair."

Of course the obvious choice would be for James Bond to return to Rolex, and I hope EON Productions doesn't do something dopey like announce James Bond is going to be wearing some goofy new brand.

I also couldn't help but wonder if Tudor might be the new choice of Bond? I realize it seems far-fetched, but this all-new Tudor Heritage Chrono seems all James Bonded out to me.

The next two photos are really interesting because the first one is of the all-new Tudor Heritage Chrono, and the one below it is of the original home plate version.

The photo below that Jocke took at BaselWorld 2010 shows the first generation Tudor-Chrono that apparently was an unreleased prototype. This is the watch the all-new Tudor Heritage Chrono is based upon, and the first Tudor home plate that was introduced to the public for sale was identical to this watch with the exception of the bezel insert.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Dick Vermiel & Mario Andretti Two Legendary Sports Figures...

Dick Vermeil & Mario Andretti
Two Legendary Sports Figures
Two-Tone Rolex Datejust

Dick Vermeil is pictured below with his pal, and former racing superstar, Mario Andretti. Dick Vermeil played football in college and in 1959 he was a quarterback for San Jose State University. He went on to become a coach at Stanford University and in 1969 he joined the Los Angeles Rams as a special coach. In 1974 he became the head coach for the UCLA Bruins and he led them to win the 1975 Rose Bowl against Ohio State.

From 1976 to 1982, Dick Vermeil was the head NFL coach for the Philadelphia Eagles, and from 1997-1999 was the head coach for the Saint Louis Rams. From 2001 to 2005 he was the head coach for the NFL Kansas City Chiefs.

Mario Andretti is considered to be one of the best and most successful American race car drivers in the history of the sport. Mario Andretti raced in Formula One, IndyCar, World Sportscar Championship and NASCAR and also won in drag car racing, sprint cars and midget car racing.

In an amazing career that spanned decades, Mario Andretti won four IndyCar titles as well as the 1978 Formula One World Championship. To this day, Mario Andretti remains the only driver in history to win the Daytona 500 (1967), Indianapolis 500 (1969) and the Formula One World Championship. Mario Andretti won 109 major circuit races in his career.

Rolex Macro Shot Of The Day 007's Polar Explorer From Istanbul...

Rolex Macro Shot Of The Day
007's Polar Explorer From Istanbul
Rolex Explorer: Reference 16750

Monday, March 22, 2010

BaselWorld 2010 Reflections Plus Supercase Submariner Wallpaper...

BaselWorld 2010 Reflections
+ Rolex Supercase Submariner Wallpaper

So I thought I would share my reflections with you on BazelWorld 2010. The Tudor Heritage Chrono freaked everybody out in a great way and there were some very nice ladies watches, but I think the most significant takeaway point is the all-new Supercase Submariner.

The Submariner has always been my favorite Rolex overall and to this day it remains Rolex's most iconic watch, although Leo disagrees with me and thinks the Datejust is equally or more iconic.

I might be reading between the lines, or hallucinating or simply attempting to project my own autobiography on to Rolex, but it seem like Rolex has been going through some extreme changes since the departure of its former CEO, Patrick Heiniger. It seems like Rolex has done almost an about-face and is returning to its heritage, and this appears to be coming across with the introduction of the new Submariner.

I say this because of one simple detail: the fact they did not polish the center links. Keeping the brushed/satin finished center links maintains the Submariner as a true tool watch. This detail also seems significant, because many people in the Rolex community have voiced their opinion that they did not want to see them on the Submariner and Rolex seems to have listened–or maybe they had it planned this way all along?

I have not had the change to wear the all-new Submariner, but it appears to be one HUGE leap forward on the evolutionary scale. The black dial with the fat hands and Maxi Markers looks so poppin and trademark, and the supercase with the jumbo crown-gaurds looks really strong.

Also, the new ceramic bezel looks great with its etched-out 3D numbers. Also the all-new glide-lock is a very welcome addition.

If you click on the images above they will give you a desktop wallpaper image that is 1600 x 900 pixels. For those of you who have the amazing new Apple 27inch iMac I prepared high resoltuion versions:

2010 BaselWorld Introduction Rolex Hotness: Flower Power White Rolesor Datejust Lady 31mm

2010 BaselWorld Introduction
Rolex Hotness: Flower Power
White Rolesor Datejust Lady 31mm
[Reference 178274: Bracelet 63160]

At the BaselWorld trade-show in Basel, Switzerland Rolex showed off their all-new Lady Datejust 31mm watch on a Super Jubilee bracelet. This beauty has a dark rhodium, electroformed white rhodium tone-on-tone floral motif with and Arabic numeral at 6 o'clock.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

BaselWorld 2010 Introduction All-New Datejust Lady 31mm Rolex Hotness: Chocolate & Diamonds

BaselWorld 2010 Introduction
Rolex Hotness: Chocolate & Diamonds
All-New Datejust Lady 31mm
[Reference 178341: Bracelet 72161]

This all new ladies Datejust is stunningly beautiful. It reminds me of the vintage men's Rolex Rootbeer GMT-Master, but with diamonds. I think crown dials are such a great look when you mix them with gold which gives them this really nice Italianate mocha look. It is amazing how much warmth this watch exudes...

This beautiful new watch is made from Everrose Rolesor and the domed bezel has 24 brilliant diamonds. The dial has Roman numerals and a gem-set Roman number at 6 o'clock.

I have a feeling this stunningly warm and beautiful Rolex LadyDate watch is going to be very popular with the ladies!!! It has a very effervescent vibe that is very Ms. Sparkleplenty!!!!