The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

fair land

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– photo by Mitch Waxman

April 5 saw a humble narrator join with other maritime enthusiasts at a NYC EDC job fair set up for NYC High School aged students at the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal in Red Hook. Pictured above is the United States Coast Guard’s current ‘Commander of Sector New York’ Captain Zeita Merchant.

I wasn’t there to do anything other than photograph the event, and I donated my services for this one. Maritime is a great career, one that’s often overlooked by an educational system that seems to be set up for the singular purpose of creating office workers and clerks. Anything I can do to help is worth the time and effort.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The event was created by NYC EDC’s Ports unit, and they brought in Coast Guard, the Harbor Units of FDNY and NYPD, as well as a series of private capital outfits from the port. Tugboat operators, international shipping companies, lots and lots of offshore power generation companies. The kids attending the event were shuttled from table display to table display and offered a free lunch.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The Longshoreman’s Union was there, and they were showing off the cool toys that they get to play with on the job. After the event ended, it started to rain and that didn’t stop for days.

Luckily, I was bogged down with photos to develop and a series of Zoom meetings which I had to attend but didn’t demand 100% of my attentions.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

April 7th, I was still in Zoom meeting hell and it was still raining, but I couldn’t help but shoot yet another rainy night view of the garishly lit Bodega across the street from HQ in Astoria.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

On April 8th, it had stopped raining, but when I went out to drop off my laundry and pick up a bagel, blood trails were discovered that went on for blocks and blocks here in Astoria.

I made a few calls.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

It seems that somebody was displaying his great physical prowess with the intention of impressing a young lady. This display ended when he punched out the plate glass window of a bakery and he severed arteries in both arms and the neck. Further, his reaction to the open vessels situation was to run up and down Broadway while flapping his arms. Luckily, an FDNY ambulance happened to be passing by and noticed the spot he was in. I’m told the unlucky fellow was taken to Elmhurst Hospital where he was refilled with blood.

Now, as far as cleaning up those blood trails… this is yet another one of those “incompetent fuck” NYC stories which sees the City’s various agencies passing the buck to each other as to whose responsibility it is. NYPD said it’s FDNY’s job, FDNY said to instead call Sanitation, who in turn suggested calling NYPD.

As of middle May, the shadow of the scab trails are still visible on the sidewalks of Astoria.

“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

May 30, 2022 at 11:00 am

One Response

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  1. Thanks! for the reference to CAPT Zeita Merchant, very interesting! I worked for the USCG as a civilian. I am in awe of USCG personnel, they deal daily with powerful commercial and civilian interests, and boating crazies and loonies, while at the same time supporting commerce and maritime safety according to law, but, unlike the US Navy, are not allowed to just shoot the bad actors. They are awesome, many of them are in their early 20’s and far more mature than what one would expect now-a-days. A interview of CAPT Merchant brought up Dr. Olivia Hooker, a role model, the first African-American woman to enter the U.S. Coast Guard. Awesome!


    June 7, 2022 at 9:18 pm

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