At the inauguration, Biden placed his hand on a family heirloom Bible and wore a blue-dialed stainless steel Rolex Datejust watch, which costs more than $7,000 and is a far cry from the mass-market watches worn by presidents in recent decades, except for Trump.
Many people think it's not unusual for presidents to wear watches. Shouldn't the leader of the free world be wearing a watch that is a symbol of power, commensurate with his status? (Despite being worth the equivalent of a dozen economic stimulus checks.)
Such a notion was once so widely accepted that Dwight D. Eisenhower and Lyndon B. Johnson both wore gold Rolex watches in grand style for their Oval Office portraits. Rolex's gold-plated Day-Date model is known as the "Presidential" model, and not for nothing.
However, in the age of the Internet, such political power watches have become obsolete, and most recent presidents and politicians in general seem to believe that luxury watches symbolize a detached elitism.
Bill Clinton, who seemed to disdain aristocratic gold timepieces, wore a Timex Ironman watch, which the Washington Post wrote in 1993 was a "plastic electronic watch, thick as a brick and handsome as a hernia. ".
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His successor, George W. Bush, was more low-key, wearing a Timex Indiglo that was once sold in grocery stores.
The choice of a watch priced at $50 or less was either a sign of accessibility - even though Bush came from a family of oilmen and went to Yale (Yale) - or a posh kid going for the college-prep routine, for which bling is seen as vulgar.
Barack Obama (Barack Obama) also did not choose a family heirloom level watch. During his presidency, he opted for a mid-priced, quintessentially American watch from Detroit brand Shinola or a sports watch from Southern California brand Jorg Gray for less than $500.
It may come as a shock, but Trump broke those norms. Throughout his tenure he has been wearing cool gold watches (they have to be gold, of course) from moguls like Patek Philippe, Rolex and Vacheron Constantin that show off his mogul status.
Then there's Biden, who seems to be striking a balance between his two watch tastes (he's a real centrist) and isn't shy about showing off his premium Swiss watches, which are all stainless steel, and in addition to that Rolex, there's an Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional and an Omega Seamaster Diver 300M (Omega Seamaster Diver 300M), which retail for around $5,000 or $6,000, respectively.
To be fair, none of Biden's watches are "luxury," at least to watch connoisseurs who are used to the high prices of Swiss watches.
His Rolex Datejust, for example, is considered an undisputed classic, but in another sense, with Rolex's top-of-the-line products easily climbing into the five figures, the Datejust could almost be considered an entry-level model.
Likewise, his two Omega's don't qualify as fancy, at least in the eyes of self-proclaimed watch experts. The Moonwatch, though Swiss in origin, has been an American symbol since the Apollo 11 astronauts wore it to the moon.
The Seamaster is a sturdy diving watch that was once worn by Daniel Craig's tough guy James Bond.
So what exactly should one make of Biden's watch?
Intentional fashion statement or not, these high-end, manly watches show that even at 78, the former high school football star of the Kennedy era still wants to be seen as a rugged tough guy with a young heart (just look at his aviator shades).
They also embody a classic version of the American dream: that anyone, even a kid from Scranton, can rise to the pinnacle of power.