This watch recently entered my collection. The dial is, like many GS, subtle from a distance. You have to catch it at the right angle, up close, in certain types of lighting, in order to see the pattern; otherwise, it looks like a regular ol’ blue dial.
It is the GS SBGJ261, nicknamed “The Peacock.” Per Grand Seiko:
The dial of SBGJ261 features a texture achieved through an intricate press patterning process. The effect, radiating from the dial’s center, is immediately eye-catching, recalling the vibrant plumage of a peacock’s train. Multi-faceted indexes and razor-edged hands offer high legibility, as well as a contrasting GMT hand for tracking an additional time zone. A dual-curved sapphire tops the dial.
Like all hi-beat GS, the watch beats at 36,000 vph, it uses MEMS technology to get incredibly fine tolerances with super lightweight components in the movement - which otherwise can’t be done using traditional machining techniques - to be able to achieve 55 hours of power reserve in spite of the 5 Hz frequency, when most other manufacturers can only reliably eeek out a similar power reserve with 4 Hz, at best. But, really, I couldn’t give a jot about all that. I only care for the beautiful dial - the Peacock dial. Which makes me realize something about myself: Like the peacock, I am the most shallow animal on earth.
Peacocks have those massive trains solely for the purpose of signaling in the sexual selection game. Even though those giant tails make a peacock more susceptible to predation and causes him to waste inordinate calories and other resources on this ridiculous plumage, this is the only way for the male to credibly signal to females that he has good genes and that therefore the female should choose to mate with him. As they say, “The only credible signal is a costly signal.” And the GS SBGJ261 was costly indeed!
But, I’m old and I’m very happily married and I have 2 young kids that I adore and 2 puppies I adore even more than my kids! So, I really shouldn’t care about this dial, and I really shouldn’t care about signaling, because I ain’t in the sexual selection game anymore. Fine, fine! I get it, I get it… we’re all machines composed of biological materials, and our programming is controlled by the algorithms that emerge from the different combinations of nucleotides in our cells. And, well, the programming is the programming and ain’t nothing you can do about it. Sure, sure… I just wish that life were different somehow. And I know that’s a ridiculous thing to wish. I mean, I’m sure that the Roomba running around your house, sucking up dirt and dust wishes that its life and its programming were different somehow - like maybe it wishes it could be a refrigerator instead - but it’s stuck being a vacuum, because its algorithms have condemned it to be nothing more than a vacuum.
I mean, honestly, the universe kinda dealt us all a sh*t hand. Nature, at its most basic, is “red in tooth and claw.” Here’s an example of what I mean:
But, thank god, my now-wife finally decided to marry me, because she married me for my incredible charm and my witty repartee and my sardonic humor… I think… though, I did buy her dream home for her, along with a shed-load of plein air paintings, a house-full of Mission-style and arts & crafts furnishings… Ugggghhhhh… see what I mean about nature being “red in tooth and claw” at its core???
Anyway, this is a long rambling way to say that I really dig this dial, and I love this watch. But, I wish we lived in a universe where I didn’t.