watch the clock

watch the clock

To continually check the time because one desires something to end, typically because one is bored or is anxiously waiting to start a different activity. I was supposed to work on that spreadsheet, but I just watched the clock for the last two hours. Quit watching the clock and pay attention, Janine. We still have a lot of material to cover before class ends.
See also: clock, watch

watch the clock

wait eagerly for the end of working hours.
It is from this expression that the word clock-watcher has developed, referring to someone who is determined not to work more than their allotted hours.
See also: clock, watch

watch the ˈclock

(disapproving) often check what time it is, because you are impatient for something to finish or to happen: Someone who spends all their time watching the clock is usually not a good worker. ▶ ˈclock-watching noun: Don’t spend the afternoon clock-watching. ˈclock-watcher noun
See also: clock, watch
References in periodicals archive ?
Pupils now have to watch the clock to ensure they are on time for the next class.
Remember to watch the clock from time to time, so entrancing is it all.
The spotter helps return the bar to the racks and then proceeds to watch the clock for 30 seconds, during which time the athlete prepares mentally and physically to complete the final 2 reps of the set.
People with those skills don't really watch the clock," says Allison, who has hired several former entrepreneurs.
Frustrated by these difficulties, Hall asked Kay whether they could join the firefly luciferase gene to per and simply watch the clock gene in action.
To really watch the clock, The Leash Beaner by Doggles(R) is a carabineer that clips to any leash handle and comes with a stopwatch, compass, clock and mini flashlight.
I watch the clock, noting the time she finishes work to the time the key goes in the lock, then I can relax and sleep.
and don't forget to also watch the clock - it'll cost 5p a minute to log on.