Another frequent topic of pm and email inquiries to me concerns the Omega/Swatch USA Military Pilot Program described in my Omega X-33 Article. In short, Omega provides X-33 watches with custom caseback engravings to military pilots at a very deep discount (approx 70% off MSRP).
For reasons that continue to confuse me, irrationally optimistic internet forum readers frequently get it into their heads that despite an abject lack of qualifications they can simply form a group to make a purchase under a program for Military Pilots as if asking for free T-shirts. Somebody makes mention of it in a forum and suddenly there are 40-50 “Count me in!” and “Me too!” responses. The posts linger and are encountered in searches even months later. As can be expected the quest frequently leads them to me, and they’re often strangely maligned when I politely decline to provide the information indiscriminately.
The anonymity of the interwebs sometimes causes people to become very brave, setting aside normal constraints of tact and decorum. And frankly I’m getting a little sick of it. One inquirer recently tried to deceive me in his request, but made giveaway mistakes and misuses of jargon in his not-too-polite request. In subsequent messages he later accused me of lacking in patriotism by declining to provide the contact info to a stalwart patriot like himself. As a military veteran with service including combat deployments I found this odd, especially when the accuser was simply a collector and self-appointed expert on military memorabilia and equipment with no military service.
Yes, I do have contact info for making purchases under the program, which so far as I’m aware remains active. But no, I do not provide it to just anybody.
For reasons that admittedly perplex me as well, the person(s) responsible for answering web inquiries thru the Omega webpage seem to have no knowledge of the specialized niche sales area that is perhaps apart from regular distribution channels. I was only able to verify the continued existence of the program through a military pilot who had recently made a purchase under the program. He graciously provided me the contact info but requested that I use discretion in disclosing it, a request which I cheerfully honor.
In order to prevent Omega from being deluged with unqualified requests and to honor the request of the owner who provided me with the contact info, I have chosen to release the contact info if and only if requesters provide a .mil email address to send the reply to. No exceptions. Period. Providing a .mil email address is a trivial matter for anyone even remotely qualified for the program. I think this is a very reasonable request and you’re not going to talk me out of it, no matter how creative your excuse.
If you disagree with my approach and think you ought be entitled to take advantage of the program anyway over my objections, I invite you to contact Omega directly. Good luck.