I learned a new word in Japanese while looking at a 1970's blue dial, King Seiko Vanac Special.
|A King Seiko Vanac. It's difficult to tell if a watch crystal|
is scratched from a photograph. If a scratched crystal
is oshii for you, always look at the watch in person.
I should add, undesirable to me, because one person's oshii is another person's "that's fine."
The watch I looked at is similar to this one, but with a deeper blue dial and jewel-like indices. A true beauty, except, except...sigh.
Oshii in Japanese means one flaw which renders an otherwise fine object undesirable, or which ruins it. Oshii is a word that looms large in world of vintage watches. "If it wasn't for the non-original crown, I'd get that watch," or "That small watermark on the dial kills this watch for me," are thoughts we've had on many a watch hunt. Oshii is similar in meaning to the expression, "Close, but no cigar."
It's better to be alerted to a watch's flaw before you buy the it, better to let おしい rule you, than to buy a watch, flaw included -- and from that moment on all you see is that problem. It's better to take a pass than to let that flaw grow larger in your mind, transforming a small scratch into a scar of deep regret.
Some scratches can be erased, returning your
watch to a time before it was injured.
おしい。Oshii. Now I know another word for that disappointing sensation all watch collectors feel because we didn't bring a loupe.