The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

rigid objections

with 2 comments


– photo by Mitch Waxman

One divides his outside time into “long walks” and “short walks.” A long one usually involves the words “Maspeth” or “Greenpoint,” whereas the short ones involve “Ravenswood” or “Triborough.” Sometimes a short walk will find me walking a mile one way, making a right turn and walking another mile, and then angling my toes back towards HQ here on Astoria’s Broadway. I’m always looking for something interesting to photograph along the way, and I have my “dance card” of subject matter in mind when setting out.

Automotive maintenance facilities have recently been added to my dance card, or “shot list” if you must – gas stations, car washes, tire shops. Luckily, Astoria’s 31st street offers opportunity on two of those three items.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

These sorts of businesses are disappearing rapidly, given the current fashion amongst the Real Estate Industrial Complex and their conspirators in elected office to espouse bicycles as a “green alternative” to automotive transportation. Negating the need for these auto based businesses, you might as well build luxury condo towers where they used to be and act all sanctimonious about it. Whatever.

This particular short walk found me scuttling along Northern Blvd. to 31st street, making a right at 31st, and then shlepping northwards to Astoria Blvd., then looping back south to Broadway in a zig zag along the residential streets in the 40’s. I didn’t want to go too far from home as rain was forecast for the particular late January night I was out and about and shooting these photos. Freezing rain sucks.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

One adjures the NYC DOT, whenever the opportunity arrives, to do something about the street lighting situation along 31st street. My opinion that the Governor’s rebuild of the various stations of the elevated trackage has vastly improved the lighting situation at the various corners that you encounter them conflicts with the general ennui most political people feel about Albany’s Dark Lord of the Sith. Even a master of the dark side can brighten things up if he so chooses, and these precise bastions of illumination offered by the Empire State provide stark contrast to the dark and often disconcerting streetscapes maintained by the minions of the Dope from Park Slope – despite his Zero Vision mission. Or… Vision Zero, right? Got to stop confusing the terms, even though both Governor and Mayor are contaminant minions of the Dark Side of the Force.

Saying that, by the time I got to Astoria Blvd. my spectacles began to get stippled by the first drops of that freezing rain and a humble narrator decided to double time it back to HQ. Hooray, and may the Force be with you.

Note: I’m writing this and several of the posts you’re going to see for the next week at the beginning of the week of Monday, March 8th. My plan is to continue doing my solo photo walks around LIC and the Newtown Creek in the dead of night as long as that’s feasible. If you continue to see regular updates here, that means everything is kosher as far as health and well being. If the blog stops updating, it means that things have gone badly for a humble narrator.

“follow” me on Twitter- @newtownpentacle

Buy a book!

In the Shadows at Newtown Creek,” an 88 page softcover 8.5×11 magazine format photo book by Mitch Waxman, is now on sale at for $30.

Written by Mitch Waxman

March 9, 2021 at 12:00 pm

2 Responses

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  1. This came out today in the New York Post. So it sure looks like Transportation Alternatives is lying to our elected and DOT officials (as they have been for quite a looonngg time) and their psy-ops plan to discourage people from driving isn’t working.

    JQ LLC

    March 9, 2021 at 12:24 pm

  2. Great pic of the tire shop. I don’t think I’d take my transmission there, tho.


    March 9, 2021 at 9:20 pm

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