The Timekeeper of Washington Square Park

by CLAIRE WILLETT · April 14, 2008

[Youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=txvyiwRngGo]

Most of you likely don't often go through Washington Square Park during the week days. If you do you may have heard, as you huffed past meandering clumps of coeds, a gruff voice bellowing "Three minutes to class." You may have seen a craggy, somewhat shrunken older man standing in the middle of University Place, briskly directing traffic. His name is John, and he is our Timekeeper. From Monday through Friday, John bellows out the time to passing students (he has two watches). He also chastises speeding cars, halting them when possible, so that oblivious students (i.e. us) don't get hit. John does all of this for free; it makes him happy, he says. Still, we were delighted to find that two Tischies, Forrest McClain and Andrew Yip, had acknowledged John's services in a short biopic. It's entitled, appropriately, Timekeeper.