The 2004 Olympic SWATCH MysteryAerinos

SWATCH has been involved with almost every summer and winter Olympic Games since 1932, when they were the first official timekeepers. So imagine my confusion when I went to the official SWATCH website a couple months before the Olympics and had to spend 10 minutes before I found any info on the Athens 2004 Olympics.

When I finally located the page with the Athens 2004 information on their new line of watches commemorating the event I found this description:

 "Unveiled on June 15 at the Stoa of Attalos (Ancient Agora) in Athens, Greece, SWATCH astounded the contradictory worlds of art and technology with a design irony worthy of applause- the 2002 SWATCH Irony Diaphane Collection.

Its name alone relates to the Greek word diafanis. Its marriage of transparent frosted plastic, lightweight aluminum and polished steel offer it a certain beauty. Its totally innovative look makes it the new SWATCH. Two distinct models for the SWATCH Olympic Collection, Aerinos and Stivos, pay tribute to the magnificent success of human energy, as SWATCH captures passion and spontaneity in motion."

Impressive description right? You would never guess that they are just talking about a watch. I may not be the world's best businessman but if I were shelling out the kind of money that it costs to be an official sponsor of the Olympics I sure wouldn't hide it in the dungeons of my website. It would be right up there on the front page with flashing lights and other internet attention-grabbing gizmos. Here we were in the summer of 2004 and on the official website of an official sponsor of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games you can't find any mention of it even though they do mention the Swatch Beach Volley Ball World Tour while the Bunny Sutra model gets top billing.

NikitisSo what was I looking for SWATCH information for?  Well you see I have this friend named George and he owns the SWATCH Shop in the Plaka and I told him I would make a nice little page for him. Maybe you haven't heard but tourism is down and business is slow since 9/11 and the war in Iraq so I thought I could send a few customers his way. But I don't wear a watch and in fact I could care less about them. I generally don't care about the Olympics except that they are in Athens. I mean if they are on TV I will watch an event or two. Usually a basketball game involving the USA that has the potential of being close, or maybe a baseball game against Cuba. So we have two subjects I know nothing about, watches and the Olympics. So I went to the Official SWATCH website to see if maybe I could get some stuff off there that would convince some of my readers to go to his shop and buy watches since there is nothing that I could say that would convince someone to buy a watch since I don't wear them. That is where I discovered that SWATCH seemed to be downplaying their involvement in the Athens 2004 Olympic Games. (At least on their website. Go to Athens and SWATCH is everywhere.)

So I wrote and asked them about it and they cleverly evaded the question of why there was no mention of the Olympics on their main page and sent me a link to the pages I had already found. They said they would be unveiling their Olympics page soon. What were they waiting for? The Olympics to end? And how did I end up writing this article when I was just trying to make a small advertisement for my friend. I did not go looking for trouble. I was not trying to uncover a scandal. I just wanted some information on the line of Olympic SWATCHES and did the natural thing and went to the Official SWATCH website and found almost nothing. Why?

If you work for SWATCH, before you get mad at me why don't you see for yourself and find out what is going on with your website. How were we going to have a successful Olympics if we don't all do our part? We see that SWATCH has their signs all over Athens and their ads will be on display at every event. So why not mention the Olympics on the Official SWATCH website? And how come when I went to the SWATCH site and clicked on the Olympic Collection there was only one watch? One watch is not a collection. When I went to the SWATCH Shop in Athens there were dozens of Olympic watches. Then, when I went back to the Official SWATCH website I could not even find the quote about the Olympic Collection that I used at the top of the page. It had mysteriously disappeared.

I would put a link to the Official SWATCH website so you could see what I am talking about but that would be like giving them free advertising. So instead, if you are in Athens and you like watches, especially SWATCHES then go to visit George's SWATCH Shop at 107 Adrianou street in the Plaka. There is a large selection of Olympic SWATCHES and non-Olympic SWATCHES. Many more than you will find on the Official SWATCH website, which, by the way does not even list Greece with the countries that have SWATCH Shops.

Anyway... here they are. Actually they look pretty cool. I may have to start wearing one myself.



Rhythmic GirlAthletic BoyStivosStrovolosTheoratosKymata

Visit the SWATCH Shop in the Plaka of Athens at 107 Adrianou Street.

Return to Athens Survival Guide Index