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The Grumpy Collector

The Grumpy Collector

By The Grump (Troy McHenry)
Join, your host and incurable collector, Troy McHenry, as he navigates the modern zeitgeist of "stuff" and what it means to be a collector in the 21st century, such as avoiding the mental and financial pitfalls of hype cycles, product drops, and FOMO. A discussion of watches (every odd numbered episode), contemporary collectibles and consumer culture (every even numbered episode), including both the hidden gems and underrated as well as uncovering the bloated and mediocre.
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To store or not to store, that is the question. All the things to consider when selecting the perfect watch box or case
The world of watches is literally flooded with options to store and transport your watches.  In this episode we break down all the various options on the market, their pros and cons and the things you should keep in mind when selecting your next watch box, case, tool roll or watch tube.  I've grappled with the idea of the perfect watch box for over a decade and have a pile of discarded watch boxes to prove it.  Learn from the Grump so you don't make similar mistakes along your watch journey.
August 27, 2022
Meet Gary Slayen! Boomerang, Kite, Car, and Watch Collector, Enthusiast, and Dear Friend
For this episode I interview passionate collection and enthusiast Gary Slayen!  Gary and I go deep into his many passions and collections as well as probe into his criteria for what makes a great watch, boomerang, and kite.  Gary is one of those rare collectors who can see beyond brand names and marketing to truly uncover quality without the hype. Show notes can be found at:
May 04, 2022
Watches & Wonders 2022 - The Unfiltered Truth And Hot Takes Of All The New Watch Releases In March!
If the watch world is a solar system, then the watch trade show that is Watches & Wonders is the Sun, which everything revolves around.  From Omega X Swatch MoonSwatch to the "Lefty" Rolex GMT II Master and all the new watch releases in between, we leave no announcement unexamined. Learn which watch brands got it right and which got it WAY wrong this year.  We cover all the new watches from Patek Philippe, Rolex, Ressence, Grand Seiko, TAG, Edox, Zenith, Omega, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Panerai, and many others! 
April 07, 2022
Every Artist was First an Amateur, and Every Collector was First an Acquirer: Collecting Art Today
In this episode we tackle and decode the art world from the perspective of an aspiring collector.  Everything from how to think about researching artists and galleries, derivative art, the distinction of fine art prints, social media's influence on the art market, and how hype culture has taken over urban art and everything in between.  The best part is we only talk about NFT's for one minute, I promise!   For those listeners in North Carolina, I also include a list of handy links and references of my favorite galleries and museums in the state. Show notes are epic as always and can be found right here:
February 09, 2022
Our First Interview... Meet Olivia Briggs! Watch, fountain pen, custom keyboard collector extraordinaire!
On this week’s super-sized episode we have our first interview!  I first heard of Olivia Briggs through Grand Seiko’s GS9 Club’s newsletter.  We talk about just a few of the things she collects and is passionate about… There’s a lot of watch talk (we go deep into Grand Seiko) but we also talk about Japanese lacquer, the idea of intentionality, fountain pens, the food and coffee scene in New York City, and her love for custom keyboards and keycap sets.  She’s even designed some of her own custom keycap sets under the moniker, Olivia++. Check out all the show notes, which can be found right here:
January 19, 2022
2021 Year End Review - State of the Watch Collection (SOTC)!
In this episode we do a deep dive into the Grump's watch collection, what did it look like like at the beginning of 2021, what came and went throughout the year, and what moves are planned in 2022.  It was a BUSY year with way more changes than I originally thought.  Did the Grump actually sell a Jaeger-LeCoultre from his collection?  Did he finally jump on the Rolex bandwagon?  Is it true, he only loves chronographs?  Find the answers to these questions are more in this week's episode.
January 03, 2022
EDC, It's Easy As ABC - Let's Explore the World of Everyday Carry
This episode is all about Everyday Carry, aka EDC.  The idea and ethos as well as the community that's grown up around EDC is all based on curating and being mindful of the tools, gear, and gadgets we interact with and use every day.  In this episode, we'll cover some of the various categories of gear that falls into the EDC world (such as bottle openers, flashlights, pens, wallets, etc) as well as review of the better and lesser-known makers who are creating some amazing creations today that are affordable and accessible.
December 16, 2021
Hidden Gems: Modern-Day Limited Edition Jaeger-LeCoultre Watches!
For this week's episode, we uncover the world of neo-vintage Jaeger-LeCoultre limited-edition watches.  The early 1990's all the way through the mid-2000's was an amazing time for JLC watches with groundbreaking Reverso designs and movements as well as new benchmarks in enamel work and wood marquetry.  This episode also acts as an experiment with Spotify's new video-format podcast.  Which means if you listen to the podcast on Spotify you can see accompany video as we go through all the rich watch content.  If you listen to the podcast through other platforms, fear not, as you can follow along with slides posted on the show notes page at!
November 25, 2021
Like a Rolling Stone, an Exciting Hobby Gathers No Moss - All About the World of Collecting Rocks & Minerals
Join the grump as we review the vast world of rocks and mineral collecting, where to get inspiration, tips for building a collection, and explore adjacent topics like their mystic and non-traditional healing uses and various collecting strategies including getting out there yourself!  We'll wrap up with the related topic of gold prospecting!
November 17, 2021
Going Once, Going Twice, SOLD! - 2021 Geneva Fall Watch Auction Review
While autumn for most people means falling leaves, crisp air, and pumpkin spice everything, for watch collectors it means it's time for Geneva Fall Watch Auctions!  We cover all the major watch auctions that have taken place in the last 10 days including two charity watch auctions, The Pink Dial Project and Only Watch as well as major watch auctions by Phillips, Antiquorum, and Christies!  Get the Grump's take on which watches were bargains and which watches were busts in this super-sized episode.  Discover what today's auction prices mean for the health of the watch market for both new and vintage.
November 10, 2021
How to Succeed in Coffee Mugs Without Really Trying
What does it takes to be a superior coffee mug?  In this battle royale we assess the merits of 10 different mugs from the humble NYC diner mug by Fishs Eddy all the way to mugs and cups by PKK Ceramics, East Fork Pottery, Haand, Willowvane, Best Made, Granby Workshop, Object-Matter "O-M" and others!!!  What's the current "hype mug" of 2021 aka #TheMug and does it deserve all the hype?  Which mugs are worth the price and which are not even worthy to hold your morning brew regardless of cost!  You'll never look at a coffee mug the same way ever again!
November 02, 2021
Introduction to the Grumpy Collector Podcast and we go DEEP into Grand Seiko!!!
In this inaugural episode we baseline our expectations and goals for the podcast and then dive head first into Grand Seiko, the fastest growing luxury watch brand in the US.  What's attributed to their meteoric rise, what will it take for them to continue to grow, and why do collectors love their watches so much?  Troy, the "grump" reviews a few in his collection, what first attracted him to the brand, and some mistakes he feels Grand Seiko has made along the way.
October 27, 2021