The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

Archive for June 24th, 2022

blasphemous unthinkability

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– photo by Mitch Waxman

My day on the NYC Ferry was timed to coincide with sunset, which has been a bit of an obsession for me this spring. Normally, I eschew the sort of monotonous obsession most photography people have with the solar cycle, but given that my time in NYC is now finite and the clock is officially ticking…

What the hell, why not?

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Jamaica Bay is the body of water that follows Brooklyn’s south eastern coastline, and is fairly contained and defined as being north of the Rockaway Peninsula. It’s the water you see when you’re driving on the Belt Parkway, or landing at JFK Airport. Its beaches and tidal channels are where a young but already humble narrator used to go to escape from his parents, riding on his Apollo brand 3 Speed bike.

Funny how a kid used to be able to just ride a bike in NYC without dedicated bike lanes in “car country,” isn’t it?

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The NYC Ferry, as mentioned a couple of days ago, really opens up the engines in this area. Given the shallow bottom of Jamaica Bay, you encounter real wave action hereabouts, and the Ferry’s speed couple with that saw me bouncing around in my seat. Let that one sink in, I was actually sitting down. That’s how fast the boat moves on the Rockaway route.

I’m planning on renting a car next month and driving around the old neighborhood one last time. That’s my other news… I’ve got an active and no longer expired Drivers License again. Hey – if you’re planning on moving out of NYC to America, you need a car.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

My timing for this leg of my day on the ferry was working out perfectly. Everything according to plan, I would be standing on a dock in Manhattan just after 7 p.m., and at the time of year which these shots were captured – sunset was going to happen just about 8 p.m.

What was also great about this particular day is that I didn’t have to worry about anyone else’s comfort or bathroom schedule or any of that sort of crap. Crotchety bullshit is just difficult for me to suborn these days.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

I’m 54 years old. I haven’t exactly taken care of myself over the years and there’s lots and lots of physical issues that I deal with on a daily basis. I’ve been bitching and moaning about my trick left foot publicly, but that’s the tip of a god damned iceberg as far as what I’m feeling on a daily basis, even with my somewhat legendary tolerance for pain levels. I actually get tired now, have to sleep 7-8 hours religiously, and I don’t have the ability to absorb constant punishment that I used to count on anymore. A mild case of frostbite back in February slowed me down for an entire month with numbed fingers, for instance. A month!

I used to heal like the comic book character Wolverine. Not anymore.

Saying that, toughen the freak up and stop complaining about things you can’t control. Get on with it. Stop bitching or just stay home.

– photo by Mitch Waxman


At any rate, the NYC Ferry from Rockaway arrived at Pier 11 in Manhattan just as the East River light show began. I had been riding the system for about four hours, spent an entire afternoon and early evening on the water, and all it cost me was $5.50. Even better, the boats have snack bars, and bathrooms.

Back next week with more wonders at this – your Newtown Pentacle.

“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

June 24, 2022 at 11:00 am

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