The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

Archive for August 15th, 2013

naturally prompted

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The trains coming, hurry up.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Perambulating across the blessed hills of almond eyed Astoria the other day, testing out my new lens (the Sigma 18-35 F 1.8 DS), a humble narrator suddenly perceived an ear splitting howl coming from on high. The elevated tracks on 31st street carry the N and Q service to and from Manhattan, offering Astoria’s huddled masses egress into the Shining City of Manhattan. One thing these tracks are not is quiet.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Our Lady of the Pentacle and myself, along with our little dog Zuzu, live along the R line which is fairly cradled by the earth. Occasionally, happenstance or track work or just the urge to mix up my commute, I find myself on the elevated tracks. The views from up there can be stellar, but unfortunately the MTA has had to install sound blocking fences at the stations to calm the frayed nerves of those who live along 31st street. A busy commercial corridor, 31st street is also a primary approach to the Triborough Bridge and the Grand Central Parkway for traffic leaving Queens Plaza from the Queensboro Bridge.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Its a funny thing, as Astoria is one of the few places in the central core of NYC that still looks like New York. Greenpoint has this quality as well, but the prime directive these days seems to be to obliterate any of the uniquely “New Yawk” elements of the cityscape in favor of a bland homogeneity and a mirror glass frontage which is built to the edge of the property line. Often have I wondered if this is caused by having a Boston transplant serving as the Mayor, who has hired a staff of Midwesterners and Southerners to serve as planning executives.

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.

The Poison Cauldron of the Newtown Creek – Saturday, August 24, 2013
Newtown Creek walking tour with Mitch Waxman and Atlas Obscura, tickets now on sale.


Written by Mitch Waxman

August 15, 2013 at 7:30 am

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