SOUTH ORANGE, NEW JERSEY – Mark Mueller, 42, stared at the face of his Fossil-brand timepiece, “…actually it doesn’t have a model name. I suppose it doesn’t need one.” He bit down on his quivering lip and furrowed his brow before closing his eyes, “and it’s quartz so I don’t need to worry about winding it.”

Incidentally, Mueller hadn’t procured the watch himself. It was a gift from his wife (one watch of many actually) that wouldn’t have been his first choice… or second or third… if it were ever up to him.  Over the years he’d amassed several dozen, all of which were incredible mark-downs from their original MSRP costs that were “too good to pass up.”

Mueller tried to explain the persisting phenomenon, “She says gift giving is her love language…”  He removed the Fossil and placed it with the others in his repurposed cookie tin box “…whatever that means.” He shook the tin from side to side as if panning for gold before picking up another, “This DKNY one was originally $399 but she found it at Macy’s for less than seventy if you can believe it. She’s got a real nose for this kind of stuff.”

When pressed about the origins of his interest, Mueller sheepishly confided, “Actually my dad had a Rolex when I was a kid. It was the only thing I’d ever seen him wear. He used to let me shake it back and forth and I could feel the rotor spin through the case. It was almost cathartic.” His eyes distilled toward a wandering haze, “I made the mistake of telling Sandra that story and birthdays haven’t really ever been the same since… or promotions… or Hanukah.”

In his closing remarks, Mueller clarified, “Not ‘mistake’,” rocking his head side to side, “perhaps ‘overshared.’ I mean why own one or two Rolexes when you could have several dozen-” His voice trailed off before reaching back in the box, “…Kenneth Cole Reactions.”

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