A pair of clock fanatics at Pennsylvania’s National Watch & Clock Museum took their adoration of one particularly intricate specimen too far.
Despite an abundance of warnings urging museum-goers not to touch any of the watches or clocks, the couple proceeded to pull and poke one hanging clock on their visit on May 31 — until it predictably tumbled from the wall. In all fairness, the culprits immediately notified museum staff of their actions, but the broken clock will remain in repairs for months before returning to its rightful place.
“Once he pulled it up a little too high, that weight came off track and the heavy weight came down, hit the clock, knocked the clock off the wall, so then you see the results,” museum director Noel Poirier told WCAU-TV. “I think what he was trying to do was raise the weight up because I think he thought that would make the clock run.”
The video shows the James Borden-designed clock falling to the ground and a few pieces scattering across the floor. The man lifts the clock from the floor and tries to rehang it, but the two quickly abandon the effort.
The video has hit the front page of reddit and been uploaded several times to YouTube.
“I thought, ‘what kind of clock falls down upon being touched’ but they practically stress tested that thing,” commented one Redditor. Another writes, “One little nudge is stupid enough, but he would NOT. STOP. TOUCHING IT.”
A “Learning Moment”
After the clock breaks apart like LEGOs, the couple breaks off in separate directions as if they meant to ditch the scene of the crime, but a closed captioning video catches the whole fiasco on tape, preserving for the rest of the world what the museum is now generously terming a “learning moment.”
“Apparently this visitor really wanted to see this one run,” Poirier said. “For us, it’s a learning opportunity for folks because there are reasons that museums ask folks not to touch things.”
Of course, learning moments typically occur with young ones, but apparently the Museum of Watches and Clocks really brings out the child in all of us.
“This is why we beg and plead with our visitors to please refrain from touching objects in museums,” Poirier said.
So please, if you chance by Columbia, Pennsylvania’s Watch & Clock Museum, for all of our sakes and for your own, lest you end up the mockery of the internet like the couple in this video, please control your enthusiasm! It’s just not fair to the watchmakers.