Archive for August, 2007
They say there’s a “sucker born every minute” but you’re not a sucker if you intentionally know what you’re getting into. On a recent trip to New York City, I knew that Canal Street was the place I could find the not-so-elusive fake Rolex watch. Sure enough, I had to walk only one block of the infamous market district before I was approached by a nervous-looking guy offering what he promised was a “genuine” Rolex time piece.
Discerning shopper that I am (even when in the market for fakes), I declined the gentleman’s offer and continued to peruse the goods offered in the small cluttered shops. A few “designer sunglasses” and hilariously bootlegged copies of current movies later, I ran into another guy promising that he had an “authentic” Rolex watch to sell me. I agreed to take a look at the watch and negotiate.
The street-salesman produced a watch wrapped in a plastic bag which I pointed out was not the intended casing for a true luxury watch. The timepiece had a protective plastic covering on the face and was silver with gold trim along the metallic band. I negotiated with my new friend to pay fully one-fourth of the “great deal” he wanted to charge. I left Canal Street with fake goods in hand, especially thrilled with myself for being a willing victim to the fake Rolex scam.
When I returned from my trip, I decided to research the differences between the watch I bought and a real Rolex. Of course, my watch was a textbook fake, from the shoddy materials, clear-glass backing, and the inaccurate “date bubble”. Below are some tips on how to distinguish a true Rolex from a forgery:
Clear Caseback – As previously mentioned, my “Rolex” features a clear backing so the inner workings of the watch are on display. A few mechanical components inside even display the signature crown to appear more impressive. This is perhaps the easiest to recognize feature of a counterfeit watch, because Rolex has never made a watch with a “skeleton caseback”.
Cyclops Magnification Bubble – The crystal on authentic Rolex watches features a “Cyclops bubble” that offers 2.5 times magnification of the date. On fake Rolex watches, this bubble is often off-center or made of glass, and usually approaches only 1.5 times the magnification.
Micro-etched Crystal – My counterfeit watch doesn’t even attempt to mimic this feature, but many fakes will try to match the micro-etched Rolex logo that has become standard on genuine watches made after 2002. Rolex began micro-etching their coronet symbol into the crystal just below the 6 o’clock position. The mark is so small, it is often difficult to see with the naked eye, but can be identified under magnification. The detail is so precise that counterfeit models often cannot replicate the logo accurately.
Hologram Sticker – Again, my fake watch can’t compete with higher-class fakes, but some forgeries will attempt to re-create the hologram sticker that comes on all Rolex case backs. The sticker features a hologram of the Rolex Crown positioned just above the case reference number. Most forgeries are not hologram stickers at all, but simply patterns that do not change when viewed from different angles.
Triplock Crown Seal – The Daytona, Submariner, and Sea-Dweller models feature an extra seal between the winding tube’s threads. Many replicas will completely leave this feature off or possess a fake seal that serves no practical purpose.
Size and Weight – although it is not the most scientific method for determining a fake, it should be noted that authentic Rolex watches are very sturdy and therefore relatively heavy. Fake watches are made from cheaper materials and typically feel very light. Also, the bands on genuine Rolex watches are full whereas fakes often display hollow links.
Hand Movement – The second hand on a genuine Rolex watch features a smooth and continuous movement that often cannot be duplicated by fake watches. Their movements are often in small, jerky increments.
Sapphire Composition –Many faux-Rolexes will use regular glass instead of true sapphire crystal. A good test of the materials is to check the water surface tension. A smeared film of water will pull together on sapphire due to the extremely smooth surface.
Lettering – Be sure to check the dial of your potential purchase to see if the lettering is precise. Under high-magnification, the type should reveal clean edges not found in many forgeries.
Case Reference Numbers – The serial and case reference numbers can be found in between the lugs on the side of the case. Authentic Rolex numbers are engraved with great detail and are very smooth. The numbers on fake watches often look “sand-blasted” or are roughly etched into the case.
The name Rolex has become synonymous with success and style, and it would be a shame for anyone to be suckered into paying premium prices for a forgery. Trusting a reputable dealer is the best way to obtain a genuine Rolex, but if you must go outside of the typical channels, be sure to use common sense. Do the research, ask questions, and remember if it looks too good to be true…it probably is.
Originally uploaded by Oaun Kazmi .
Ever seen it??
If not here’s your chance
Teenagers are worried about bullying and personal safety
One in five young teenagers says that their friends are carrying knives and weapons, says a major annual survey of school children’s health and wellbeing. These weapons are carried by worried boys for “protection”, say youngsters – and researchers link this to increased affluence among teenagers.
This portrait of teenage life, based on a survey of 70,000 youngsters, shows considerable fears of bullying.
Getting drunk is also a habit for a quarter of 14 to 15-year-old girls.
This survey from the Schools Health Education Unit has been examining the lifestyles of young people since the mid-1980s.
With concerns about knife crime among teenagers, this survey shows that a fifth of youngsters are “fairly sure” or “certain” that their male friends are carrying a weapon.
“We have linked young people’s carrying of weapons with other aspects of their lifestyle, for example, having money to go out,” say the report’s authors.
The annual survey shows a picture of children entering secondary school with plenty of exercise and enjoyment of sport.
But as the teenage years develop, it shows a substantial minority of children affected by “wheeziness” and declining fitness, insecurity about personal safety, anxiety about appearance and exposure to drink and alcohol.
A declining number of children live with both parents – 66% in this survey – and in terms of recreation, there are examples of youngsters spending a long time alone.
There were 16% of boys who spent more than three hours playing computer games after school – and 79% of teenagers were using the internet unsupervised.
The survey shows that less than half of secondary pupils walk even part of the way to school – and 57% of teenage girls are “wheezy” if they have to run. A fifth of youngsters in this age groups are classified as asthmatics.
It also found widespread, frequent use among both boys and girls of non-prescription painkillers.
Girls also revealed worries about their appearance – feeling “picked on” over issues such as weight.
And with fears of being overweight, the survey shows that more than a quarter of 15 year old girls had had no breakfast that day – and among these, a quarter had had no lunch the previous day.
Teenage girls also reported particular fears about not getting an adequate amount of sleep.
‘Chips and crisps’
There were signs that the messages of healthy eating were getting through. There was a decline in the chips and crisps diet – and almost a quarter ate three portions of fresh fruit and vegetables each day.
The long-term overview of the survey shows that the use of illegal drugs is not rising – and that smoking cigarettes continues to decline. A majority of 14 to 15 year old boys have never smoked a cigarette.
It shows that young people are living in a culture where there is widespread exposure to illegal drugs and alcohol – and that children have to exercise their judgement to refuse.
About one in five 14 to 15 year olds have taken cannabis – but a much higher number know drug users.
A quarter of 14 to 15 year old girls had been drunk in the previous week – higher than the rate for boys. And among those children drinking at home, two in five did so with the knowledge of their parents.
But it also points to a growing affluence among teenagers – with up to 40% of 15 year olds having part-time jobs.
With extra cash, youngsters have access to more consumer goods and going out at night – which in turn could make them more vulnerable to crime.
It could also be connected to health matters – because the most likely way of spending money for teenagers is on sweets and soft drinks.
Jie Jie Cai is four months old. He sits in a green chair by the balcony, and gets plenty of attention.
Jie Jie Cai will face a huge burden of care when he grows up
Attention from his mother Jia Rui, his father Wen Kang, grandfather number one Wang Jun, grandmother number one Chun Hong, grandfather number two Zi Jin, and grandmother number two Chun Ping.
They each follow everything that Jie Jie does – which, at the age of four months, is not all that much.
Right now Jie Jie has absolutely no idea how much his family is counting on him.
When he gets older, he will have to support them all. Six adults – and just one child. This is the effect of China’s one-child policy.
“We want you to look after all of us,” Jie Jie’s father tells him. “Mum, dad, grandpa and grandma one, grandpa and grandpa two.”
China may be forging ahead as a world power. But it is also beginning to face the long-term logic of its one-child policy – too many old people and not enough young people.
In other words, fewer workers supporting more and more elderly relatives.
Wang Dan works to support her elderly relatives
Twenty-year-old Wang Dan knows what babies like Jie Jie will face when they grow up.
She sends back the money she makes at the Betta factory in southern China to support her parents and her grandmother. Many others do the same.
People like Wang Dan are beginning to carry a heavy burden.
In this, the world’s largest country, factory owners are now finding it difficult to get enough workers.
At the Betta factory, several benches of sewing machines are idle – there are not enough workers to fill the spaces.
“It’s very difficult,” says William Wang, who runs the factory, “and it’s getting more and more difficult. Now there are a lot more factories and fewer workers because of the one-child policy. Costs are going up. It’s not looking good.”
By contrast, the San He care home in Beijing is full of bustle.
The residents play their afternoon board game of mahjong with great intensity. Two retired police officers, now in their eighties, play a game of pool.
William Wang said it is becoming difficult to find workers
The owners of this home have no problem filling spaces here. Starting up an old people’s home is a guaranteed way of doing good business in China.
This particular home used to be a primary school – until everyone decided it made much more sense to focus on the elderly instead.
“I used to work as the head teacher of the kindergarten, and now I’m in charge of the old people’s home,” says Wang Shuyuan.
“Because of the one-child policy there are fewer children in China. So, many schools are changing into old people’s homes. It’s very common now.”
On the ground floor, the residents queue up for lunch. Some of them have pensions to pay the care home fees. Others rely on their children to pay for them.
In the next few decades, this burden will get heavier and heavier.
China will have 400 million elderly people. Who is going to feed them all?
Originally uploaded by Sir Cam
Love is… University Botanical Gardens.
A couple was celebrating their golden wedding anniversary on the beaches in Montego Bay, Jamaica. Their domestic tranquility had long been the talk of the town. People would say, “What a peaceful & loving couple “. The local newspaper reporter was inquiring as to the secret of their long and happy marriage.
The Husband replied: “Well, it dates back to our honeymoon in America, ” explained the man. “We visited the Grand Canyon, in Arizona, and took a trip, down to the bottom of the canyon, by horse. We hadn’t gone too far when my wife’s horse stumbled and she almost fell off. My wife looked down at the horse and quietly said, “That’s once. “
“We proceeded a little further and horse stumbled again. Once more my wife quietly said, “That’s twice. “
“We hadn’t gone a half-mile when the horse stumbled for the third time. My wife quietly removed a revolver from her purse and shot the horse dead.
I shouted at her, “What’s wrong with you, Woman! Why did you shoot the poor animal like that? Are you crazy?? ” She looked at ME, and quietly said, “That’s once. “
“And from that moment…..we have lived happily every after. “