The Newtown Pentacle

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Posts Tagged ‘Astoria

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“Wet Paint,” said the sign.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

A short break, wherein offerings at this, your Newtown Pentacle, will consist of lighter fare than that normally served is underway. Obligation and a series of deadlines have dominated all attention, and accordingly – for the next few days, singular images with a pithy yet abbreviated description will be supplied. One must render unto Caesar, after all.

There are now four public Newtown Creek walking tours coming up, one in Queens and one in Brooklyn and two that walk the currently undefended border of the two boroughs.

Plank Road, with Newtown Creek Alliance, on April 19th. This one is free, click here to get on the list.

Poison Cauldron, with Atlas Obscura, on April 26th. Click here for more info and ticketing.

DUPBO, with Newtown Creek Alliance and MAS Janeswalk, on May 3rd. Click here for more info and ticketing.

Modern Corridor, with Brooklyn Brainery, on May 18th. Click here for more info and ticketing.

 

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Written by Mitch Waxman

April 15, 2014 at 11:00 am

recumbent head

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Hell in a hand basket, lords and ladies, and tongue held firmly in cheek.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Nothing can cause a humble narrator to fly into a rage faster than encountering a vehicle parked on the sidewalk. This is a big problem in western Queens, where the law is enforced subjectively at best, and especially here in Astoria with its population of expatriates and immigrants who were generally too uncontrollable, troublesome, or irascible to stay in the country which they were born in.

Just the other day, on my way home, this scene was spotted on 35th avenue in the 40′s.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

These people… Sheesh. They come here with aspirations of building a new and better life, form a lasting relationship with our relatively non tyrannical government, and this is how they thank the natives? When I was a boy, people who parked on the sidewalk would find themselves swinging from a tree or lamppost, or just fed to a pack of wild junk yard dogs. It’s obviously the fault of real estate developers and our elected officials that this sort of thing is allowed to continue.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Worst of all, this isn’t even an American made car. How does some newcomer afford a foreign sports car anyway? Can’t be from earning it… next you’ll tell me it was a gift. Grants and subsidies and social welfare programs set aside for immigrants that’s how. Can you imagine how much revenue the City loses, only enforcing the parking laws on its native born citizens?

Feh, satire bites

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Written by Mitch Waxman

March 19, 2014 at 11:49 am

delvings into

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Adjusting to the frozen realities of our time.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

As a housebound invalid, which is what these frigid temperatures reduce one such as myself to, it has been a bit of trial accepting the simple fact that the burning thermonuclear eye of god itself will never again shine down upon and warm the good land of Queens. One can really get a sense of why the events which would signal the oncoming Viking apocalypse (Ragnarok) were called the “Fimbulvetr” – which translates as “awful, great winter” – after the last couple of weeks. Eschatology notwithstanding, a humble narrator wishes that something – anything – would happen, even an oncoming storm of vengeful Valkyrie, just to break the monotony of the “Frozone.”

- photo by Mitch Waxman

At this stage, it seems that I’ve watched everything which Netflix offers. I can recommend “Lilyhammer” without reservation, and I’ve finally caught up on “Sherlock” and can understand what everyone has been going on about. I’m rereading David McCollugh’s “The Great Bridge” and endeavoring to finally slog through the final chapters of “Gotham” by Mike Wallace and Edwin G. Burrows. Also, planning for this years series of walking tours is underway.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

I’ll be doing an event at Brooklyn Brainery in February, which will be discussed in a post later this week, and preparation for this will occupy a bit of my time, but like my little dog Zuzu – I’m bouncing off the four walls right now. I should have become a slave to Opium at some point in the past, so as to pass through intervals in the frozone in a cloud of nepenthe.

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Written by Mitch Waxman

January 28, 2014 at 9:04 am

rattling carts

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“Last stop for gas” spake the feckless quisling.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

For some reason, NYC’s Gasoline Filling Stations keep on catching my eye, but I think they’re supposed to do that. Probably, this interest has a lot to do with all the history posts about the Petrochemical industry along Newtown Creek, but it just might be something as simple as the usage of bright primary colors used in their trade dressings as I am simple and foolish. The one above is in Maspeth, at a location which is neither tick or tock but is instead found between them.

from wikipedia

A filling station, fuelling station, garage, gasbar (Canada), gas station (United States and Canada), petrol bunk or petrol pump (India), petrol garage, petrol station (Australia, Hong Kong, Ireland, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa and United Kingdom), service station (Australia, United Kingdom and United States), or servo (Australia), is a facility which sells fuel and usually lubricants for motor vehicles. The most common fuels sold today are gasoline (gasoline or gas in the U.S. and Canada, typically petrol elsewhere), diesel fuel, and electric energy. Filling stations that sell only electric energy are also known as charging stations.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Worry about imaginary Police reports, ones which describe a suspicious middle aged man that has been taking photos of fuel stations in Queens, have crossed my mind. So much so that the last time I had the ear of my local City Councilman – my paranoid imaginings were mentioned. He promised me that he wouldn’t let them take me to Guantanamo Bay, but couldn’t offer any specific guarantees about Rikers. Either way, the elected fellow promised to ensure that I got extra cookies with my dinner, should I end up in either institution.

from wikipedia

Gasoline /ˈɡæsəliːn/, or petrol /ˈpɛtrəl/, is a transparent, petroleum-derived liquid that is used primarily as a fuel in internal combustion engines. It consists mostly of organic compounds obtained by the fractional distillation of petroleum, enhanced with a variety of additives. Some gasolines also contain ethanol as an alternative fuel. In North America, the term gasoline is often shortened in colloquial usage to gas. Elsewhere petrol is the common name in the United Kingdom, Republic of Ireland, Australia and in most of the other Commonwealth countries.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Most of the pumps I see are the modern kind, dressed with digital payment terminals and all sorts of fancy kit. One suspects that there’s probably more computing power in a modern gas pump than would have been found in a high end desktop pc from just ten years ago. I’ve actually seen the old timey style pumps still at work in certain quaint hamlets in the backwoods of Vermont and Massachusetts as well as standing extant in the vast archaea of Crete.

from wikipedia

The first gasoline pump was invented and sold by Sylvanus F. Bowser in Fort Wayne, Indiana on September 5, 1885. This pump was not used for automobiles, as they had not been invented yet. It was instead used for some kerosene lamps and stoves. He later improved upon the pump by adding safety measures, and also by adding a hose to directly dispense fuel into automobiles.

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Written by Mitch Waxman

January 15, 2014 at 7:30 am

rusty impediments

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Your motive is loco, man.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

So few places to go, no one to see. The gray frigidity has me down, lords and ladies, and it is not impossible that over the last few weeks, I’ve watched everything on Netflix- including a couple of episodes of “Power Rangers Jungle Fury.” Playing with the cords on my hoodie, counting the floor tiles, bored. That’s me. Cabin Fever, I think they call it.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Been reading lots of good stuff, including a marathon exploration of the dissimilar topics of leprosy and the genetic consequences of multi generational incest- both of which led to the Hapsburgs. None of this relates one little bit to the history of Newtown Creek nor Queens, which actually has been my intention. Little projects like mine tend to drag you down a long drill hole, and you become so focused that you lose sight of the bigger picture… which somehow includes leprosy and incest.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

Its cheerier reading than I normally do during this time of year, when my google searches have historically included “stages of putrefaction of cadaver” and “common practices of yeast distillation in 19th century america.” Hey, a guy gets curious about things. Its better to know something, well… some things… than to remain willfully ignorant about unpleasantries.

“follow” me on Twitter- @newtownpentacle

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