The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

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eternal day

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“follow” me on Twitter at @newtownpentacle

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Back in Queens, a humble narrator has been rather busy for the last few days.

Next week, the schedule of spring and summer Newtown Creek tours will be revealed to you at last, as well as some details about the ambitious schedule of boat tours which the Working Harbor Committee is planning. Short perambulations around the neighborhood have been my only distraction from the plotting and planning of this year’s excursions. Unnatural and unseasonable cold, however, has left the streets adorned in a drab winter appearance.

One starves for color.

from queensnyc.com

On Sunday, we joined over 140 people aboard a New York Water Taxi for the Working Harbor Committee’s tour of Newtown Creek. The tour was narrated by Mitch Waxman whose encyclopedic knowledge and passion for the area can be seen on his blog The Newtown Pentacle, and on his tours and work as the historian for the Newtown Creek Alliance.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Resorting to hanging around the produce departments of storefront merchants brings no surcease to this desire for the bright hues of Spring. Normally, one would expect the trees to show some sign of returning vitality and conscientious property owners would have already begun planting early varietal. Free ranging grasses should also be raising bright green shoots by now. Instead, the yellows and browns of winter linger, as does an unnatural chill.

One thirsts for warmth.

from nytimes.com

Not that Mr. Waxman is any sort of an academic. While the Newtown Creek Alliance, an environmental advocacy group, lists him as its resident historian, his credentials were earned on the street and the Internet, through countless solitary walks and countless nights poring over obscure archives. 

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Mainly, I’m just tired of hanging around in the cold wastes waiting for something to happen, and truly look forward to a day spent entirely out of doors and unencumbered by the heavy garments of an overly long winter. The next few months should be pretty interesting, lords and ladies, and without spilling a certain can of beans- pencil me in for May 26th.

One desires company.

from blsciblogs.baruch.cuny.edu

Usually it’s not a great thing when your memory of the first time you met someone person is inseparable from a terrible, gag-inducing stink. But with Mitch Waxman, it comes with the territory.

Written by Mitch Waxman

April 5, 2013 at 12:15 am

artificial means

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“follow” me on Twitter at @newtownpentacle

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Maritime Sunday is suspended again this week, so as to incorporate the timely but dire warning that another Abomination has been spotted, moving freely through the community. This time the sighting was on Greenpoint Avenue in Sunnyside, whereas the last place and time I reported that such an entity walked amongst us was in Manhattan, back in December of 2012.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

The beast had taken up station on the block opposite the park, and in some wild pantomime of clumsy gesticulations admonished passersby to accept a script of some kind. The blood chills thinking about what sort of bargain might be offered by such a creature, and one wonders if there are some things which might well be worth any cost.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

The whirring staccato of my camera shutter attracted the attention of this rodent of great size, no doubt due to its overdeveloped auditory capabilities. Irregular coruscations of the cardiac action ensued deep within your humble narrator when the great beast suddenly stiffened and began to turn towards me, for given the speed legendarily attributed to its kind an attempt at escape would be, at best, a fruitless endeavor.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Cruelly baleful in expression, the monster fixed me in its glare while baring monstrous teeth, which were not fangs, instead its mandibular apparatus appeared to be bare plates of bone whose prominent shape and appearance reminded one of nothing less than the steel blades of jack hammers. ThIs halfling hare was around one and three quarter meters tall, and seemed both sturdily built and well armored by a dense hide which tended to hang loosely about its presumably sinewy limbs.

Watch your back out there today, it may be Easter Sunday, but this Abomination was lurking around, on the sunny side of the Newtown Pentacle, just yesterday.

Written by Mitch Waxman

March 31, 2013 at 4:06 am

Project Firebox 61

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“follow” me on Twitter at @newtownpentacle

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Out of order is what the sign says, with instructions to instead call 911 or some other specialized number for the Queens Fire dispatchers. There are several fire boxes bearing similar screeds which have been seen around Sunnyside in recent weeks, so my guess is that some central switch or relay is out somewhere. Imagine the horror of this scarlet watcher, unable to reach out to its distant firehouse to summon aid. This box also carries an option for summoning the gendarme, by the way, a feature I remember as originating sometime during the second or first Koch administration.

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