The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

Archive for August 12th, 2013

gradual glow

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She floats thro’ the air with the greatest of ease

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Like one of the personalized parables which populate “Thus Spake Zarathustra,” your humble narrator dares not tread the sky for he knows that failure will result due to personal inadequacy and a hidebound mind. This youngling spotted at South Street Seaport’s “Trapeze School New York,” it seems, has no such limitations placed on her “Will to Power.”


Trapeze School New York is dedicated to making flying trapeze available to anyone who seeks inspiration, challenge, fitness or just a couple hours of unique fun. Our mission every day is to create a safe, fun, challenging environment where our students strive to surpass limitations and more richly enjoy their lives.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The trapeze section of Pier 16 is well fortified, with nets and rigging, and is surrounded by a chain link fence to keep the curious out of harms way. The procedure, as I’ve observed it, is to allow participants an opportunity to learn the circus art under tutelage. They come up, one by one, and train in handling themselves on the wire.

If your humble narrator was to attempt something like this, it would merely provide an EMT the opportunity to learn how to resuscitate someone who died of fright.

from wikipedia

A trapeze is a short horizontal bar hung by ropes or metal straps from a support. It is an aerial apparatus commonly found in circus performances. Trapeze acts may be static, swinging or flying, and may be performed solo, double, triple or as a group act.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

I’ve never had the urge to swing from a series of ropes, ride a wild or even tame horse, nor drive without a seat belt on. Vast physical cowardice is my thing, having long ago decided that disease or old age will suit me nicely, rather than accidental or violent death. These people are meshuggeneh.

from wikipedia

meshugaas, also mishegaas or mishegoss: Crazy or senseless activity or behavior; craziness (Yiddish משוגעת meshugaas, from Hebrew məšugga‘ath, a form of the above)

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Nothing wrong with the activity, however, they are all trussed up with safety lines and every participant observed ends their routine by practicing a drop into the safety net, which is actually pretty smart. Still, it takes some sort of fortitude to do this in front of hundreds of people a couple of dozen feet over the dock. This is one wild hobby to cultivate- swinging roughly through the air, on the flying trapeze, at South Street Seaport.

from wikipedia

Courage is the ability and willingness to confront fear, pain, danger, uncertainty, or intimidation. Physical courage is courage in the face of physical pain, hardship, death, or threat of death, while moral courage is the ability to act rightly in the face of popular opposition, shame, scandal, or discouragement.

In some traditions, fortitude holds approximately the same meaning as courage. In the Western tradition, notable thoughts on courage have come from philosophers such as Aristotle, Aquinas and Kierkegaard; in the Eastern tradition, some thoughts on courage were offered by the Tao Te Ching. More recently, courage has been explored by the discipline of psychology.

Want to see something cool? Summer 2013 Walking Tours-

13 Steps around Dutch Kills Saturday, August 17, 2013
Newtown Creek walking tour with Mitch Waxman and Newtown Creek Alliance, tickets now on sale.

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