You may have heard of the term WIS before when attending watch gatherings or reading through forums and blogs. The definitions are varied but essentially it means are you a watch nut, nerd, fanatic or aficionado. Let’s take a deeper dive into what being a WIS is.

WIS: Watch Idiot Savant, derived from the French word “savant” which literally translates into “learned idiot”. Coined in 1927, a savant is someone who exhibits exceptional skill or brilliance in a limited field. Alternatively, a person who is high knowledgeable about one subject, but knows little about anything else…


Some interpret the above as someone who has detailed knowledge in one of several areas of watches, while being socially limited. Don’t take offence to any of it if you are a WIS, it’s just like people who are into cars, handbags, cigars, clothing, food etc. So what makes a person a WIS, let’s look at some examples:

  • The first thing you notice about a person is the watch they are wearing
  • You remember someone by the watch they are wearing, not by their name
  • You look at your watch, but you’re not really looking at the time
  • When getting dressed, you think about what watch to wear first
  • You protect you wrist constantly from any knocks. If you do hit it against something, you immediately put it under light and carefully check for damage
  • You cover your watch while in the rain even though its rated to 100m water resistance
  • When planning a holiday, you take note of where the watch stores are in that city
  • On holidays, instead of “unwinding”, you take pictures of your wrist at different places / monuments
  • You stress about which watch to wear on holidays, so much so you bring more than one, just in case
  • One watch is never enough
  • Enjoy 30 day months as you can advance the day to the 1st of the month on your watch manually
  • You know what the Naval Observatory Master Clock is and its in your favourites list
  • Your internet bookmarks are filled with watch forums and blogs
  • Instead of your desktop being a picture of your family or pets, it’s of a watch
  • You know what year the serial number of a watch corresponds to
  • Your partner is extremely frustrated with your watch obsession
  • You spend more time looking at your watch than you do your partner
  • You talk to the sales assistant at the watch store more than you talk to your partner
  • A large amount of your disposable income is spent on watches and watch accessories
  • You’re emabrassed to tell people how much your watch is worth
  • You buy a watch thinking you can pass it onto your children in future
  • You use a UV light to charge the luminous material in your watch
  • You can remember the exact date you purchased each of your watches but can’t remember your children’s birthdays
  • You know the address of each of the watch stores in your city but cannot remember where your relatives live
  • You know exactly when to service your watch, but don’t care about how often your car is serviced
  • Two watches aren’t enough
  • If you trip or injure yourself, the first thing you think is – “is my watch okay?”
  • For your birthday, anniversary presents, mother’s/father’s day – you only ask for watch related presents
  • When you get a bonus, the first thing you think about is what watch you can buy next
  • You might not have a college or university fund, but you have a watch fund
  • You spend more time staring at the back of your watch than the front dial
  • Even at K-Mart of Target, you find yourself looking at watches
  • If the numbers 5276, 5070, 5970 or 5513, 116610 mean something to you
  • You can correctly pronounce the name “A. Lange & Sohne”, “Jager LeCoultre”, “Audemars Piguet”
  • You name your pets El Primero, Valjoux, Lemania
  • Three watches aren’t enough
  • You talk to other people about watches when they have no interest in them at all
  • You change the watch you’re wearing at least one time during the day
  • You’ve managed to get to the bottom of this list

That’s a pretty long list and here at Watchonado we can safely say at least half of the above apply to us. We’re not embarassed or ashamed about it. As a friend keeps telling us, among other things, you just have to learn to “embrace” it.

We welcome any more additions to this list, please feel free to comment on this post with yours.