The quest to counter the relentless march of time has been pursued by dreamers and puzzled over by scientists since, well, the beginning of time. Now, the French luxury giant Hermès has cleverly succeeded in achieving the very appearance of slowing time with its new watch the Cape Cod Grands Heures, first introduced at Baselworld 2011, and available in stores in time for the holidays. The face of the new watch, which has three choices of distinct dials, shows numeric hour indicators that are clustered together, spread far apart, standing solo and intermittently spaced — all allowing for a variable speed that gives the illusion that time is moving more slowly, or more quickly. Want your afternoons to seemingly pass at a more leisurely pace? Choose a dial with wide open spaces between 2 and 4. Prefer a purportedly longer happy hour? Try the version with larger gaps between 5 and 7. This ingenious trick of time is managed by an oval wheel system that allows for the speeding and slowing of its motion, while the minutes and seconds march steadily, and constantly, on. The clever dial design encourages the romantic notion that time can actually take its time, but the hours, alas, remain the same. Always the hours.
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