As of March 13, Coffee the Train Man had spent six years letting commuters know when the trains were coming at the Cortelyou Road subway station. This short documentary by Columbia grad student and neighbor Ethan Wagner presents a profile of Coffee, and explains a little about his background and his recent arrest, plus numerous comments by neighbors.
“He’s here helping everybody, letting everybody know when the train is coming, opening doors, closing doors,” says one commuter. “He’s a very nice person.”
“I know people who would have lost their jobs if it wasn’t for him,” says another.
Of course, you may have noticed Coffee has been absent from his post since being arrested on March 21 for allegedly violating an order of protection. Unable to post bail, he spent about a month in jail until he made a plea deal, and he may or may not return to Cortelyou Road–the documentary doesn’t have any answers about that, one way or the other.