AS if throwing around rulers on set because he doesn’t know how to read them wasn’t enough, Jim Skelton decided to bring an Internet beef that he started to ShopNBC airwaves. On the Invicta Reserve Watches show from Monday, March 29, Skelton repeatedly made reference to a series of blogs that I’ve written over the past few months. Of course he completly misrepresented the argument in an attempt to simplify and ridicule.

“If a camera goes out out of focus for a second oh it means that Jim Skelton is leaving the show!” (32:25 in)

Uh, that’s not my opinion at all dipshit. ShopNBC let’s Temple go a few years back. Your ass kissing of Lalo results in his pushing for you to be hired.

Once you’re there for awhile, you launch with the Invicta ‘Technical Brand Manager’ Michael Davis and another guy. You plug it on the air and your numbers swell. Any descent is met with insults and bullying. Threads are routinely deleted. You even attack a coworker, Shawn Wilsie as seeking to be a “martyr” and attention seeker. Those are your own words asshole, and anyone who has a login to WG knows it’s true!

You created and facilitate a marketplace on WG where these loyal ShopNBC buyers have the ability to purchase current SNBC merchandise, slightly used, at deeply discounted prices. In my original blog, I linked to an example of a Renato that is $400 less than one at the Shop. Your response was to take the sales forum from public to private. Am I “poisoning” peoples “minds” with untruths? Anyone reading this can sign up at and see for themselves by opening a ShopNBC browser and the WG marketplace in a second and compare the merch side by side.

How did you feel when you found out that Tim Temple was contacted by the new management team? How did you feel when he was finally brought back? It seems it was on his terms which is why he’s not an employee. And you apparently had to sit on that info. When watchgeeks was open to the world, I went back and found where you were alluding to a “Big Announcement” in August. That turned out to be Temple’s return announced in October. In your Jay Leno style response to the first article you mention that you had signed a new contract the prior week; the week of October 7, 2009. Those sources that I don’t have at ShopNBC tell me that contracts are either 9 month or 12 month deals. Which did you sign?

I’ll admit I was wrong; I thought you’d be long gone by now. Still under contract but off the air and gagged. How you like it. If my math is correct the week of July 7, 2010 is the nine month point and October 2010 is the year mark. You like to accuse me of back peddeling but the truth is that I based my speculation on what I would do if I were running the network. I’d keep you under contract so you couldn’t bad mouth the network but I’d most definetly bounce your fat ass out of the chair. My thinking was that management would be concerned with keeping the zombie buyers around. I’ll give you credit where it’s due; you have quite a few moronic fanboys and girls that think buying every dial/case/braclet of a particular model is watch collecting. You’ve also managed to get a lot of people to accept lackluster quality merchandise and used items sold as “New” with the same furvour and frenzy as religious zealots. I mean I’ve read WG posts where people bitch about getting a returned, worn item as new, complete with scratches. The responses always include other members attacking them fir complaining ; paraphrased as “You should be glad you got one!” Any readers of that original blog from October can see that you do have a hold on some people by looking at the comments. Kudos to being a hero of the stupid.

But the bigger picture appears to be more straight forward. You’ll be there until your contract is up, be it 9 months or 12. We both know you won’t be re-signing. Your shitty attitude, double entendres, sexual innuendo, questionable history and bluring of the line between watchgeeks, Invicta and ShopNBC is a liability for the network and your social network usurps the imitative that ShopNBC is attempting to implement.

Instead of trolling knife forums and causing trouble you really should have memorized the English measurements that coorolate to the most popular metric sizes associated with the watches you present, especially if you cannot use a ruler. Hmm – am I reading to much into this? Maybe you don’t care because you’re not coming back.

Tell the world which contract you signed – the 9 or the 12. Prove me wrong.

The facts are as clear as that George Michael beard on your face: Daniel Green did take a swipe at you; Shawn Wilsie has disassociating himself from your site – on the air and on Fb. Seven minutes into Monday’s show linked above you backhandedly say you watched all the shows but Temple’s while getting that major surgery that kept you away from watch geeks but not from trolling knife forums. And both you and that half-a-retard looking Davis always drop Tim Temple’s, “I’m just sayin” catch phrase as an inside joke between the both of you. Ha, ha, ha – that’s so funny. Nobody picks up on it, ha, ha, ha. You even do it on WG posts by signing it! Stevie Wonder can see through it dumbass! Am I really “reading way too much into things” or are you so stupid that you don’t realize how transparent you are?

I’m just sayin’…


Anything but divers

March 16, 2010

I wrote this blog while waiting in my office lot for the column of stopped traffic to slowly move and disappear over the horizon. I had about half an hour to kill and I’d been going crazy, jonezing for a watch. I ended up at my TJ Maxx presented with three choices: a Rotary Chrono with a rotating bezel in a dive configuration with a pressed steel sing deployent and a face marked “A Swiss Institution”; a Victorinox chrono with a high set polished thin bezel devoid of markings, three different rings and a dual deployent and finally a Zodiac chrono with silver face, hidden pushers and scissors deployent…

IT’S been over a year since I bought a Zodiac Air Dragon Chronograph. This watch grabbed me because of the $90 price tag and my experience with 4 other Zodiac models.

Since I was but a boy leaning to haggle with flea creeps and people who equate age with value, I’ve always sought the “Deal”. But with the simultaneous rise of fashion brands relative to their quality, the deals, real deals on quality Swiss made pieces are far and few between. Today we see both the Grandfather of faux provenance along side the fashion brands, both, for the most part, Million Smart clones that differ only in the European name on the dial. Their Côtes de Genève pressed and not engine turned into the bridges of Chinese dials. If there is any Swiss today, it’s 40mm which I’m even guilty of abandoning.

I guess there are always dive watches.

Jesus Christ, it’s all there are! From eBay to forums, ShopNBC to TJ Maxx the story is the same. Desk Divers. How many ways can it be done? Big markers, distinct hands and a rotating bezel. Variety comes in the form of Invicta’s appropriated Soviet divers. I’m over all of it. I’ve embraced 44mm watches but i refuse to wear a saucer nearly as big as something on my arm that Flavor Flav had strung around his neck 25 years ago. With the exception of a handful of models, most of these oversized pieces look almost as if they are a parody of themselves. I’m thinking of the Invicta Venom and the CX Swiss Military Watch rated to 20,000 Feet. Come on – the deepest I go is 12 feet in the pit of my pool. I don’t need a watch that is an inch high of my wrist. I don’t crave attention and can accept my insignificance. Absurdity is the new Rock n’ Roll in horology. Who’d a thought people would embrace something like the Invicta combat (I.E. All Black) editions of established models; “sport” watch sans lume.

Will we ever again see aviator watches with slide rule bezels? How about Max Bill style minimalist dials that Nomos once resurrected? I can appreciate what both Invicta and Croton are doing with the vintage, minimalist dials and case designs, but I’d buy if they took this design nod seriously.

Anything but divers…

Activists Fuck Off!

March 3, 2010

ACTIVISTS piss me off because at the heart of their so-called ‘actions’ is really nothing more than bullying for a cause.

Take Animal Planet’s Whale Wars as an example. You have this crew of young idealist lead by a seedy, creepy motherfucker named Paul Watson. The guy never puts himself in harms way, instead he sends these young people out to do his bidding while he sits, warm and secure, on the ships deck. They carry out their harrasment of Japanese whaling crews in the Southern Seas in what amounts to a comedy of errors.

My question is, why don’t they fuck with the Norwegians or Inuits? Because neither group would take their shit. They’ed end up getting an ass whipping or worse, shot.

Just like the ‘activists’ that throw paint on an old lady’s fox or front on some soccer mom driving an SUV. Why not throw paint on a pimps mink or go front on a Brother in an Escalade? Tell him how he’s killing the plant; I bet you’ll get a receptive audience.

WELL, we are at years end and Jim Skelton is still hosting at ShopNBC.

“What gives, Betterskills? Why he still there?”

In my best Teluglish, “Let me ‘splain you…”

In my blog, Jim Skelton Out At ShopNBC?, I initially thought as much, and this suspicion seems to have credence as former host Tim Temple had recently announced that ShopNBC’s management contacting and rehiring him.

But the response from Skelton groupies and Mr.Skelton’s posing as In Cognito and commenting a few weeks after his initial, official response to that blog seemed to suggest that it would be neccisary to push it out. In retrospect his exit will probably follow the fiscal year.

A current trend I notice with the latest ShopNBC schedule, dated 12/30/2009 to 1/5/10 is that Mr. Skelton is hosting his normal Sunday show in prime time but he’s stuck with the late night, early morning slots. There are a total of 28 hours of watch programs, of which Skelton has only 8; the rest of the hours divided up between 7 other hosts. Two of these hosts I do not recall ever having presented watches. Let’s look back at Skelton’s official response to Temple’s return back in October on the website that he owns with Invicta’s Michael Davis:

“Tim will be coming back to host some of the watch hours that are currently being hosted by ‘non watch-specific hosts’ a few hours a week. The watch hours continue to grow on our calendar, and I simply cannot work as many hours as we see listed. Shawn (Wilsie) cannot work that many hours,…”

The entire remaining 20 hours is hosted by ‘non watch-specific hosts’ and Shawn Wilsie is nowhere in sight. One slot is on New Years eve in the wee hours of the last day of 2009. If he had juice, one would think he’d be on vacation like Temple is for this period – right? Additionally he is hosting an electronics show; a show completely out of character as he likes to tout that he is “the watch host” – an hour, reminiscent of his hour of Die-Cast in October.

On tonight’s Invicta show, 12/30/2009, he stated that he so loves his job that he came to work with Kidney Stones. Doesn’t that count as a reason to call off for medical reasons; especially when one is on air talent?

As Tim Temple is fond of saying, “I’m just sayin’…”

And that I am.

Jim Skelton has Comcast!

November 3, 2009

SO where are all of the naysayers? If you’re a viewer of the watch shows on ShopNBC, it’s clear that something is going on with the hosts.

As I’ve stated in previous blogs, I believe that all signs point to Jim Skelton being replaced by Tim Temple. Initially, I based this assumption on my observations, that include “>financial, conflicts of interest and liability. Mr. Skelton personally posted a response, which didn’t refute what my thoughts were, but were ambiguous enough to add more fuel to the fire. For this, I had a bunch of fucking idiots attack me who are loosely associated with Mr. Skelton through a website that he partially owns,

I knew my hunch was right.

Mr.Skelton has stated that he has a new contract. I don’t doubt it. But I’m also knowledgable enough to understand that it doesn’t follow he’ll be appearing on TV. I think he’s gagged and this is to ease the transition back to Tim Temple. I’m not sure exactly when he’ll be transitioned of the air and on to some “special assignment” that he can’t discuss. Initially, I thought by the end of the year. But after the Internet jihad of Skelton’s JiHomos, I think that date is sometime in April of next year. The visceral, overwhelming response suggests that Skelton needs to ease his fanboys into the transition. And it’s not going to be so smooth since I appear to have blown the lid off of it.

This is where it gets interesting; as well as equal parts sad, pathetic and funny.

The blog that kicked of the hailstorm, Jim Skelton out at ShopNBC?, still gets a lot of traffic daily as people search for information on the troubled ship of trade. On November 1, 2009, I received a comment that was awaiting my approval.

“Wow, that’s rich. So you know so much that Jim will be canned by January (but luckily you gave yourself an out by saying they will stretch it out, now you can’t be wrong for at least 6 months), and your influence is so strong that because of your little blog, Tim Temple was forced to join Watch Geeks.


It was authored by In Cognito who didn’t even bother with a fake email address; the only identifiable information for this comment was the IP.

Research revealed that it originated from a Comcast line in Eden Prairie, Minnesota which also is the home of ShopNBC. I didn’t think much more of it – suspecting that it was the Man or an associate. I replied directly.

Hell, aren’t you proving that this thing does have legs and a reach if you’re coming back in ‘stealth’ mode, Mr. In Cognito?

That was until today.

When I clicked on the IP of that comment accidentally, I was served up with both comments that originated from this IP. I’ll give you three guesses who the second author was and the first two don’t count.

I always took you as corny but amiable, with your love for chunky jewelry, giant cuff links, garish colors and faux hipster glasses – but you’re ‘that’ guy too? I mean, you could have sent me an email and discussed this; I know you’ve been on my Abaut page a million times. Honestly, if you would have just dropped me a line and asked me to chill, I probably would have. I don’t have a horse in your race with Tim Temple. Like I said, you’re both just guys that sell shit. But this greasy behavior suggests that your jihomo juggalo’s attacking in mass was not a fluke. I’m not saying that you were the fire starter, but I don’t think it’s a stretch to infer that you had knoweledge of it.

Next time, have the sense to do your posting from a different machine, dummy.

UPDATE 1/29/2010: || Is Skelton a Dead Man Walking?

I only caught tonight’s block of “Turning Time with Invicta” after midnight, and for the first half hour Tim Temple talked all over Jill Sommerstein. She seemed to be visably annoyed; at one point slaming her forearms on the table.

He did get more comfortable in the second half hour and Ms. Sommerstein was able to make points.

The second half of the show was much more smooth, but there seems to be something going on between the two. Did anyone else noticed that Temple seemed to keep pointing out that Jill was a sales rep? When she’s on with Skelton, he introduces her, as well as Michael, as “from Invicta”.

One can only imagine what the scene will be like Temple and Laylo finally present together again.

For the coming 5 days:
Tim Temple is scheduled for 13 hours
Jim Skelton is scheduled for 14 hours

Shit on Pitt! Shit on Pitt!

October 23, 2009

The Random House Unabridged Dictionary includes two definitions that describe 99 percent of the people that I have meet who have, at the high point of their life, called Happy Valley Pennsylvania home:

Definition 4: a group or sect bound together by veneration of the same thing, person, ideal, etc;
Definition 5: group having a sacred ideology and a set of rites centering around their sacred symbols;

Alumni and their parents always over represent the fact that they are affiliated with Penn State. From those Nittany Lion paw and HV magnets to their Penn State jackets and scarves.

I have a friend whose sister and brother-in-law are both Penn State graduates who meet while attending school. I can only imagine how romantic it was when he held her hair back as she threw up the cheap beer bonged at his frat party. They actually have their email addresses as penestategrad followed by their respective years of graduation. Give me a friggin break: who cares about your central Pennsylvania odyssey? I never bothered to probe these two that deeply about their Penn State pride as we were only together a few times socially; the longest period included good ole boy Dave disappearing for several hours with stripers during a Bachelor party at Bare Extremities in Atlantic City.

AND then there was that Penn State graduate at my last job; He had been out of school for about twelve years. He tried to put on this professional image. He wore ties and slacks the type that are sold by Haband on the back page of Legionnaires magazine – along with a stupid ass, Penn State leather jacket nine months out of the year. He wore this thing if it was 20 degrees; he wore it if it was 80 degrees. I found it funny when he would come in on humid, early summer mornings wearing that jacket and complaining that it was already hot. I asked him about the jacket after I had worked with him for close to a year and noticed how much he wore it.

“Why do you only wear that Penn State jacket?”

“Because I went there.”

“Did you play football for them or another sport?”

He laughed and said “No” with a kind of guteral chuckle suggesting I was not ‘illuminated’.

He said, “You’ve never been to Happy Valley, have you?”

“No, the college is pretty much the town, right? There isnt much ther-”

He interrupted, “Dude, you don’t know what your talking about, you have never been in that stadium when it is filled with over 100,000 chanting fans, stomping their feet”

Another co-worker immediately added, “Yeah, it is an amazing feeling…”

This sets me up for a great response, “Well, I’ve seen the films of a few of the Nuremberg Rallies so I think I have a good idea…”

Dead silence. Come on, this was a great line and you people set it up for me. All I got was a dismissive look that a father usually reserves for the moments that his son says something off color. Needless to say, he didnt talk much to me after that.

I had a bit of a showdown with a Penn State parent at my current job. I was outside enjoying a cigarette with the system architect when a pleasantly rotund blond came out onto the patio. Bob greeted her and asked her how she felt about Penn States chances in the next game. This sweet innocent woman launched into a biting invective, culminating with a chant of
“Shit on Pitt!”
“Shit on Pitt!”
“Shit on Pitt!”
I was shocked, not by her words, but how here eyes narrowed, the whites disappearing and a crimson mask rising in her face and the visceral tone in her voice. All this over a game?

I couldn’t resist. I blurted out,
“Wow, Penn State is a lot like Amway…”

Her squint angry eyes turned and burned in my direction,
“What in the HELL is that SUPPOSED to mean!?!”

What is that supposed to mean? Look at how you responded to it!
I disengage the enraged with “Well, you’re a little excited over a game…’

Her eyes divert and she takes a drag off of her cigarette and in one motion shifts her body so that she is no longer facing me. If this woman would have been a Scientologist the assembled group would instantly dismiss her as a nutty cult member. But because she’s a Penn State parent it is accepted as normal behavior.

The incident with Penn State mom occurred about four months ago. In that time she has made a point to smile at me and great me with pleasantries when we run into each other. The other day I left earlier than usual and happened to pull behind her big ole Olds Ninety Eight. And what do you suppose was on the rear deck? Stuffed Nitney lions and Penn State bears in sweaters… Oh my.

Im not wishing death on the guy but I do know that JoePa is pretty close to a thousand years-old so I know that he has less time then more. When he does pass, I do imagine a scene reminiscent of the death of Ayatollah Khomeini. The sea of black-clad people descending on Tehran by foot replaced with blue and white descending on Happy Valley, reaching a frenzied pitch and dumping the body of Joe Pa out of the coffin. I can almost see the sight of thousands of mourners in Penn States stadium as Joe Pas body is finally load on to a helicopter and lifted away…