The Newtown Pentacle

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Archive for the ‘butterfly’ Category

obvious effort

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Friday shots from the before time.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Critters greet you today, photos of which were captured prior to the war on statuary. Amongst those whose political dial leans toward the left, a humble narrator maintains an unpopular opinion that iconoclasm is never a good thing. If a statue of Godzilla is encountered, you are not going to bring Tokyo back by destroying the statue. Perhaps, you might want to create some signage for the statue describing what the beast did, and all the people it hurt, but you aren’t going to change history by knocking the face off of the Godzilla statue. Such practice has a long and ugly history, and usually signals that “the revolution” has run out of steam. Ever lament at the works of figurative Roman or Greek art in museums which are missing their faces? Roiled when the Taliban blew up those Buddha statues 20 years ago? Should the Polish Government grind away the remains of Auschwitz and build a shopping mall on the site?

Sometimes, when a statue of a bad person stands in the public square, you can change the message originally intended to illustrate evolving morals and modern points of view. Do you think Putin would be able to do what he’s been doing if statues of Stalin and Lenin were still glowering over and reminding the Russian people of the price of “strong leadership”? Also, you can’t exact revenge on somebody who has been dead for centuries by knocking down a statue.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Personally, I like to wallow in my sins, and am proud of the fact that my points of view are always evolving and changing. It indicates, to me at least, that I still have an open mind and that empathy and compassion haven’t died within. It also indicates that I haven’t become an ideologue governed by some anonymous hive mind idea.

Of course, free thought and a personally arrived at point of view are things you’re not supposed to have anymore. Follow the leader, kid, or you might get cancelled. Otherwise – some jackass bike enthusiast in Astoria might tweet mean things at you at 3 a.m., or a firearms enthusiast might…

Pepsi comes in a blue can. Coke comes in a red one. It’s all carbonated sugar water dosed up with caffeine. Drink some water.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Beyond the brave new world of calcified support for people who couldn’t care less if you lived or died, something which has come up in conversation repeatedly in the last few days with a certain segment of my friends is the fact that this is the first time in our collective memory during which we’ve actually had the summer off. For me, it’s nearly 15 years since I haven’t been waking up at six in the morning on summer weekends, then leading a walking tour of Newtown Creek and coming home at “hot o’clock” in the afternoon.

I certainly miss going to work, doing “my thing” as it were, and wish that this summer off didn’t involve a plague. I always said that what this City needed was a good plague, and here we are. Be careful what you ask for, I guess. See y’all next week with some photos collected during the after time.

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, July 6th. 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 as we move into April and beyond, 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.


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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 blurb.com for $30.

Written by Mitch Waxman

July 10, 2020 at 2:00 pm

time at

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A splash of color for a gray world.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

A humble narrator is not having a good week, and as it’s only Tuesday, portent does not offer much in the way of hope. The weather isn’t helping, either. This gray, misty, and unseasonably warm climate is depressing. Accordingly, since I haven’t been doing too much in the way of shooting for the last week or two, the archives have been accessed in pursuit of color and polychrome light. Consider this a public service from your Newtown Pentacle.

Or don’t, I’m too numb to care.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

This whole climate change business seems fairly obvious now, don’t it? The butterfly in the shot above is the one responsible, and I was there when it flapped its wings.

I should be living inside a hoodie sweatshirt by this time of the year, damnit.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

It feels like we didn’t get a “spring” in 2018, and that the summer was composed merely of the uncomfortably humid and hot days and punctuated by rain. Bah!


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Written by Mitch Waxman

October 9, 2018 at 1:00 pm

subdued prattle

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It’s National Toasted Marshmallow Day, in these United States.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

A humble narrator is indulging in a bit of down time this week, and single images will be greeting you from now until Labor Day on September 4th. I should mention that I, and the rest of the Working Harbor Committee, will be spending the week preparing for and organizing the 25th Annual Great North River Tugboat Race on the morning of September 3rd. The festivities will be occurring at Pier 43 over in Manhattan (nearby the Intrepid museum) and there’s an opportunity to get out on the water during the race onboard a Circleline Spectator boat if that’s your bag. For full details visit the workingharbor site.


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Written by Mitch Waxman

August 30, 2017 at 11:00 am

scarcely envisage

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The future is smaller than you’d think it is, in today’s post.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Since I’m in a bit of a Kafkaesque mood today, I figured I’d run a few pictures of some bugs I’ve met over the years. Bugs are like little war machines, and I’ve never been able to understand why the MIT types go to such pains reinventing the wheel when building robots and drones instead of just following nature’s solution. Why build one big hard to replace war robot when what you really want are a swarm of little cheap guys to do your nefarious bidding?

Also, bugs like that wasp pictured above might be a lot easier to enslave than you’d think. Imagine, what could you get done with an army of millions of ants doing your bidding? You’d certainly be able to “move that rubber tree plant,” despite the pop cultural aphorisms. If we could get control over the Termites, they could potentially build homes and cities for us.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

“Big Agra” is what my environmentalist buddies would call a company like Monsanto, who are the ExxonMobil of planting things and feeding animals. I’m sure they’ve got a staffer working on changing the preferences of this butterfly specie, or that one, so that instead of liking to visit and fertilize Milkweed or other pest crops, they would instead prefer to visit rye or wheat stalks. They’re also likely working on military applications for their butterfly technology. Butterflies who spy, or Butterlfies who disseminate toxins to an enemy’s fields?

Imagine a United States Marines Tactical Butterfly unit. I’d like to think the insect’s wings would be a camouflage pattern.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Weaponizing the bees and hornets would likely be the easiest thing to do. Everything I’ve ever read about bees suggest that just like termite mounds and ant nests, you have to consider the hive as being the living organism rather than consideing members of the community as individuals. A bee, or ant, isn’t very formidable on its own. When their Queen excretes the right sequence of pheromone triggers, however, the hive operates as a single organism. What you’re looking at above is actually a single cell of a far larger entity, programmed by an intelligence not its own to perform a task.

I would hope that the Marines get the tactical Butterflies, and that the Army gets the weaponized Bees.


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Written by Mitch Waxman

October 20, 2016 at 11:00 am

base pairs

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The veritable cusp of opportunity, in today’s post.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

As is often opined, winter is a hellish interval for one such as myself. Extreme vulnerability to cold both effects and affects, and the forced climactic isolation within the walls of HQ during this period is just depressing. I’ve become an “outside” person in the last decade, and a day without a long walk is hardly worth waking up for.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

It’s all about the photos for me, ultimately. Wandering about, seeing what I can see, recording but not interacting with the environment – that’s what a humble narrator likes. It’s not too much to ask for, I think. Luckily, Spring is on its way into town, and hopefully this year the season wont be two weeks long as it was last year when it seemed to go from freezing cold to high summer overnight.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

One is truly desirous of an end to the grays and browns, and a return to the blues and greens is welcome. Time to get back on the horse, roll my feet along the pavement, and get back to it. There’s a big beautiful world out there to complain about, and I’ve been stuck inside for too long.

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Written by Mitch Waxman

March 3, 2016 at 11:00 am

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