It’s 7:55 AM, November 11, 2003. Today is my 15th Wedding Anniversary.
Whew! Where has the time gone? Mind you, I’m not complaining. I’m married
to the most beautiful, thoughtful, caring, loving woman I’ve ever met (not a
time to start anything, Mom. You’re tops too). It just seems like the time
flew by. In another blink of an eye, will I be married 20, 25, 50 years? I
hope so. For all my tough exterior, I’m just a guy who loves to love and
loves being loved. Last night, I was watching Average Joe on television (if
these guys are average, I must be Superman), and somewhere between the
introduction of these sub-par studs and the elimination, I fell asleep.
What’s amazing about this, for those of you that don’t know me, is that I
wear glasses and use an LL Bean, 100% cotton, over-sized shirt as a night
shirt and keep at least two books in bed with me that I can read during
commercials, (must be productive). When I woke up this morning, my glasses
had been removed from my face and had been placed on my night stand. The
books had been taken out of bed, and my night shirt (which must be removed
before I sleep or I will strangle myself during the night as I aimlessly roll
around in bed) was off and placed on the chair near my bed. As usual, while
trying to read two books at the same time; watch T.V.; replay Queen’s Gambit
exchange variation in my head; hold my wife’s hand and think about all the
food I will be eating tomorrow, (after forty years I don’t eat late night
snacks–I’m soon to get my 90 day button), I had fallen asleep. And once
again, for the thousandth time, my wife turned off the T.V., put away my
things and tucked me in. God, I love being married to LaTeace Towns-Cuellar!
Thank you, God, for bringing a slob like me an angel like her to take care of
me! Every day I’m grateful for many things. At the top of the list is my
Talk to you soon,
P.S. Here is a sneak peak at next month’s article of the month, ‘Weighing the
WEIGHING THE FACTS:
The ‘True Weight’ of Diamonds
By Fred Cuellar
Where do Panama hats come from? How long did the 100 Year War last? In
which month do Russians celebrate the October Revolution? What is the color
of the Black Box on a commercial airline? What is a camel-hair brush made
of? What was King George the VI first name? Where do Chinese gooseberries
come from? How much should a one carat diamond weigh? While the answers to
the questions may seem obvious, more than likely you’d be surprised that they
aren’t. Panama hats don’t come from Panama. The 100 Year War didn’t last 100
years. The Russians don’t celebrate the October Revolution in October. The
airlines’ Black Box isn’t black. A camel-hair brush has no camel hair. King
George’s first name isn’t George. Chinese gooseberries aren’t from China.
And one carat diamonds offered for sale rarely, truly, would weigh one carat
if cut correctly.
Let me explain. Diamonds are a lot like people. They come in all shapes
and sizes and just like people they can carry a little extra weight. In fact,
in the community of diamonds, more diamonds are ‘overweight’ than in the
community of people: Up to 88% of all diamonds. The sad part is that it’s
the diamond industry that is purposely producing all of these chubby
diamonds! In 1919, over 80 years ago, a gentleman by the name of Marcel
Tolkowsky determined that the diamond industry as a whole was cutting diamonds
incorrectly and adversely affecting the diamond’s sparkle. Mr. Tolkowsky
released a paper on the correct way to cut a diamond so it would have maximum
sparkle (light return); no excess body fat. The Tolkowsky cut ended up
becoming the American ideal. Subsequently, in the 1950’s, a gentleman by the
name of R.W. Ditchburn applied the same mathematics in order to trim the fat
off the other shapes (marquise, pear, oval, etc.). For decades if you asked
for a well cut ‘Ideal’ diamond of a particular size, you got it. Then the
marketeers convinced the public that a one carat diamond or more was the dream
size. That’s where the problems crept in. Diamond cutters all over the world
started inventing their own criteria for ‘a well proportioned stone’ so they
could fatten up the diamond. It made me wonder ‘where’s the beef?’ I don’t
mean to sound like an old Wendy’s commercial but clearly we have a problem
when 75% to 88% of all one carat diamonds are overweight! Just like in the
Wendy’s commercial where there was a whole lot of bun and very little meat, we
are running into the same problem today with diamonds that should be Â¾ carat
but are cut fat so they will tip the scales over one carat.
Solution: The only way the problem is going to be solved is for the diamond
buying public to start asking for the diamond’s ‘True Weight,’ (A diamond in
which the crown height plus max girdle thickness plus pavilion depth equals
the total depth percentage and whose proportions meet class I or class II
criteria.) I’ve never met a jeweler who will volunteer to the consumer that
the device used to measure the diamond’s vitals (sarin or megascope machine)
also has a fat content measuring button! It’s called the re-cut feature.
Once a diamond has been analyzed, all the grader has to do is enter the
recorded data into the re-cut program, enter the desired results, (like a
plastic surgeon showing you what your nose will look like after the surgery)
and click the mouse. In seconds the re-cut program will announce what the
diamond should have weighed if it had been cut correctly vs. its current
weight. Practically every diamond I see is overweight by 20%-30%!
It is the diamond’s ‘TRUE WEIGHT’ we should be paying for, not extra love
handles left on by the cutter. If enough of us demand to only pay for a
diamond’s ‘True Weight’ versus its ‘over-weight’ then maybe some day the
cutters will get the message.
By the way, Panama hats are from Ecuador. The 100 Year War lasted 116
years. The Russian Revolution is celebrated in November. The Black Box is
orange. A camel-hair brush is made from squirrel fur. King George’s first
name was Albert. Chinese gooseberries come from New Zealand and a one carat
diamond’s ‘True Weight’ is usually only 75 points.
*If you would like to determine your diamond’s ‘True Weight,’ please call the
National Diamond Helpline at 1-800-275-4047 with your diamond’s vitals and
we’ll tell you what your diamond should have weighed.