These watches give us a cheap thrill
For an 11-year-old in 1985, there was no cooler accessory than a Swatch watch. And Matthew Newell, my then seventh-grade boyfriend, gave me a turquoise-and-pink one for Easter. (Easter!) Alas, our puppy love ended before the eighth grade began but Matthew’s affinity for timepieces has endured: He and a friend, Shayne Ivy, launched their own company, Normal Watches, last year.
Emblazoned with witty, often flippant statements—Facebook Ruined My Life, Love is the New Hate, When Did Rock ‘n Roll Become So F**king Boring?—the brightly colored accessories (10 in all so far) are 100 percent plastic and, at about $25 each, cheaper than a glass of Bordeaux at The Waverly Inn. The line, named after Matthew’s current digs in Normal, Illinois, has already been picked up by 30 retailers, including Nordstrom and UrbanOutfitters.com. But there’s no need for shopping on my end—24 years later, Matthew is back to his old gifts.