Several months ago, I received a DM on Instagram from the Alpha Hands account. Actually, I should be more precise: I noticed the DM several months ago, but because I didn’t follow the account, it was almost certainly lost in the void of unprioritized IG messages that come from spam bots and random accounts promising thousands of followers for a nominal fee.
Once I saw that the content of the message was clearly watch related, I struck up a conversation with Norm Harris, the owner of the Alpha Hands website, about his project. I noticed right away it was unlike any other watch website I’d seen (and I’ve seen a lot), focused almost exclusively on exhaustive research devoted to various topics that tip Norm’s interest for one reason or another. The site is a treasure trove of information that includes detailed production tables, serial number databases, and a stolen watch registry unlike anything else available (for free) in the space. I hit “Follow,” and mostly kept up with Norm’s posts, but like so many social media endeavors, it wasn’t something that was at the top of mind. That’s not a slight to Norm and his work, but in this strange time with so many serious issues pressing on our brains from day to day, it’s hard (at least for me) for anything remotely frivolous to live rent free in my head, as they say.
But then on July 15, a particular Alpha Hands post caught my attention. “FOUND,” read the caption, “Nina Rindt’s personal UG.”