All In The Family: Arlington's DeepSea


It’s only fitting the story behind Arlington’s DeepSea begins with a brief story about a Submariner. But not just any Submariner, THE Submariner. Yes, I’m talking about the no crown guard variety worn by a certain British Special Agent who always got the bad guy AND the girl. Arlington was a teenager back in the 1960s when - in this author’s opinion – the role of 007 was best being portrayed by Sir Sean Connery.

Arlington described 'to a T 'the famous bathtub scene from Thunderball (1965) when, by no sheer coincidence, Bond happens upon the film’s vixen taking a bubble bath. Mildly caught off guard, she asks “…would you mind giving me something to put on?” to which Bond responds by offering her just a pair of slippers. As if the seductiveness and connotation of the scene didn’t leave an indelible-enough mark on the young man, Arlington went on to recount the outfit Bond wore: a black sweater and a Rolex “on a strap.”

As the years flew by and more Bond films hit theatres, Arlington came to understand a Rolex to be a “very, very, nice watch.” In the 1970s, when he went shopping for a nice watch - incredibly he revealed - he never investigated how much a Rolex cost; he just assumed they’d be too expensive. He ended-up scratching his itch for a nice timepiece by owning several other brands, most notably, an Omega Seamaster.

Ironically, in the mid-1980s, Arlington was wearing a fake "gold Rolex" given to him by an employer to keep him looking stylish for clients. He admitted he was never one to wear a fake anything. Thankfully his salary was on the uptick just as he was getting fed up with looking at a ticking second hand. The stars were finally aligning for him to buy a Submariner – the Rolex he first fell in love with. The only problem… he noticed too many people wearing one for his liking.  He considered the gold Sub, but it was over his budget. So what did he do? He reasoned that if he couldn’t get the gold, he at least would buy the "toughest" Sub. With that way of thinking, he put a 50% down payment on a Sea-Dweller (approx. $800 at the time), returned to the jewelry store a few weeks later, paid the balance, and took possession.

For the next 20+ years Arlington and his Sea-Dweller were inseparable. The relationship thrived because his "tool watch" was the perfect complement to his personality. You see, Arlington was once a Boy Scout and lived by their motto, "Be Prepared" well into adulthood.  With its extra-thick case and greater depth rating, his confidence in his watch grew as it proved time after time to be indestructible and reliable.  Arlington also prides himself on being physically and mentally tough. Whatever challenges he’s faced, whether in the gym, at work, or in his personal life, his Sea-Dweller reinforced his mindset to be a strong and resilient person. At the end of the day, his Sea-Dweller truly came to represent him.

The kind of guy who noticed split-second cameos of James Bond’s Sub surely caught wind of the advertising campaign for the all new Rolex DeepSea. When he finally saw the hulking watch in the flesh in a local authorized dealer’s window, he stopped dead in his tracks and felt his heart beat faster. It was even "bigger" than his Sea-Dweller; he just had to try it on.

The DeepSea’s release coincided perfectly with a recent plan of Arlington’s: He wanted to pass his Sea-Dweller on to his son. He was just waiting until his son was well-enough into his 30s to truly appreciate the gift. It just so happened his son was in his late 30s when the DeepSea became available. Feeling he was about to reel in a DeepSea, Arlington proudly presented his trusty Sea-Dweller to his son.

30+ years removed from his last Rolex purchase; the market had changed quite a bit. Most notably, a Rolex cost a lot more. It took Arlington about a year to arrange for the purchase. He spent the interim researching and becoming entranced by the DeepSea’s technical advancements:  The scratch-resistant ceramic bezel, the clasp with the Glidelock extension system, crazy-deep depth rating, etc. Before long, Arlington’s wrist was reunited with a watch even more rugged than his Sea-Dweller. For a guy who developed an infatuation with "big" watches, he was in his glories wearing this one.

Not everybody can pull off a DeepSea: It’s a downright massive watch, dimension-wise and weight-wise.  The fact that it looks right at home on Arlington has less to do with his wrist circumference or physique, and everything to do with his lifelong partnership with the Submariner bloodline.  I dare someone to find a person more qualified to wear a DeepSea than Arlington.

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