The Newtown Pentacle

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Archive for the ‘Maspeth’ Category

apologetic hesitancy

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Thursday

– photo by Mitch Waxman

That’s the Grand Street Bridge pictured above, which I’d suggest you photograph soon if you were planning in doing so. The NYC DOT is going to be replacing it in the very near future, and this crossing of yet another Newtown Creek tributary – the East Branch – is going to look very different in just a few years time.

Oddly enough, at the start of the 20th and end of the 19th centuries, this was a very popular spot to commit suicide. There was a Catholic priest who did so here in his full ritual vestments, carrying his Mitre and everything. What?

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Speaking of self destructive ideations, this sort of graffiti has been turning up all around the Creeklands in recent weeks. Allow me to decode this one for you – a “fat” lie plays into a certain political dog whistle which states that the only people who get sick or die from Covid are either overweight or already burdened with comorbidity factors like diabetes or heart disease. The “rugged individualism” types push this out there to let you know that they are too morally and physically strong for the virus to find a foothold in them. It’s like lord of the flies, I tell you.

Other lines from the same crowd include “I’ll get the shot when the illegals get it,” and “I’d gladly sacrifice my grandmother’s life for the sake of the economy.” As I’ve been opining for nearly two years now, don’t listen to Politicians about anything. Instead, observe what the most risk averse corporation in America does. Watch Disney.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Did you know that nobody has ever died on Disney property in either Florida’s Disneyworld or at any of their global parks, resorts, and cruise lines? A monorail operator employee of theirs was decapitated in an accident in Florida, and Disney’s EMT’s kept the guy’s heart beating until the stretcher wasn’t on their property anymore. He died in Orlando, not Disneyworld. Like I said, “risk averse.”

The chair pictured above was discovered on the approach to the Grand Street Bridge, and it was covered in barnacles (here’s a close up). The logical supposition is that somebody pulled this thing out of Newtown Creek. The good news is that there seem to be barnacles in the water.


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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

September 16, 2021 at 11:00 am

portentous meanings

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Wednesday

– photo by Mitch Waxman

One found himself at the Maspeth Avenue Plank Road site recently, attending and photographing a Newtown Creek Alliance cleanup event that occurred on a lovely Saturday afternoon. One of the property owners nearby this site has recently been compelled to do some remodeling of their shoreline. I’ve known about this for a bit, but given that I’m usually here either at sunset or after dark, haven’t explored the new situation.

It’s not a good idea to be poking around in the bushes after dark in Industrial Maspeth, and especially so if you’re on foot and alone. Given that NCA had a fairly large group here, scooping garbage and debris off of the shoreline, I figured “why not?”

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The shoreline in this spot has been fairly impassable during my years at Newtown Creek, and largely ignored by the industrial operation which worked busily on the other side of a large concrete and steel fence. An artist I know had briefly set up a small structure back here which he used as a hangout and ad hoc painting studio. That structure had been taken over by some mendicant in the last year or two. Artist, structure, and mendicant are all gone now and there’s all sorts of geographically appropriate plantings here now.

This is where I got into the fight with a raccoon back in 2020, during which I had to poke at the thing with my tripod.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

That’s the mouth of English Kills, the Newtown Creek tributary that flows all the way back to Johnson Avenue in Bushwick. It’s also where water quality along the Creek sharply drops off. If you think Newtown Creek is bad, as everybody including the Federal Government does, you should see English Kills. Yuck.

Back tomorrow with more from my beloved Creek.


“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 blurb.com for $30.

Written by Mitch Waxman

September 15, 2021 at 11:00 am

awesome pulsing

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Tuesday

– photo by Mitch Waxman

After spending a stinky hour and change at Penny Bridge in Greenpoint, one decided to walk back to HQ in Astoria via the pedestrian path on the Kosciuszcko Bridge. I ran into a friend and her dog on the way, and got to enjoy a bit of company. Having not seen this particular person since the start of the pandemic, she was a bit startled at how much my personality has changed in the last year and a half. I explained my philosophical embrace of sociopathy in recent months, and how freeing it is to just not care about anything anymore.

Really, I just give zero shits about anything. Nothing actually matters.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The “happy place” is my pet name for industrial Maspeth. The corner which that stop sign pictured above is found on used to host a Yeshiva, which closed under mysterious circumstance back in the 1950’s. Rumors abound, including wild stories about “Dybbuk” infestations, but it’s most likely something mundane that closed the religious school. The “Frum’s” were probably just consolidating themselves into Williamsburg and or Crown Heights during this era.

Translation of Frum for Goyem – many Jews refer to the Orthodox sects (Hasids, Satmars etc.) as “Frum.” It’s a Yiddish word, which I don’t know the exact meaning of, but it seems to be related to being strict. Frum are the people you see wearing the hats and formal clothes everywhere they go, and who rigorously follow religious law and custom, and are often in the camera retail business. Conservative Jews usually dress like everyone else, but wear Yarmulkes and observe both dietary and sabbath law pretty closely, but also often ski or take cruises and that sort of stuff. Secular Jews, which are my particular tribe, are basically assimilated Americans with funny last names, except we have Chanukah substituted for Christmas.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Almost back at HQ, and suffering greatly as the humidity had risen nearly 30 points since my time at Penny Bridge, a chance meeting with a New Jersey Transit train running on the turnaround track at Sunnyside Yards necessitated a photo as it passed. Boy oh boy, was I shvitzing when I walked in the house. Oy, it’s so humid!

Back tomorrow.


“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 blurb.com for $30.

Written by Mitch Waxman

August 31, 2021 at 11:00 am

dimensioned original

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Tuesday

– photo by Mitch Waxman

A frustrating series of events found a humble narrator staggering about the “Happy Place,” which is what I call industrial Maspeth. It just before sunset, and a bunch of birds were visible, doing bird things.

Every time I try to say what kind of a bird a bird is, I get it wrong, so nowadays I just make up names for them. Hence, the shot of that Crenulated Bean Stealer is offered. This was captured at an open sewer called Maspeth Creek.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Not far away, at the Maspeth Avenue Plank Road, there were two Triple Lobed Blunderbusses. Really, you can’t understand why the Audubon people hate me so much? I mean… seriously… they fundamentally don’t like me. It’s probably because I seldom admit how important their selves are.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The second blunderbuss, which I had described to a friend as a “football standing on one leg,” is pictured above.

While I was shooting these images at Newtown Creek, there was some guy who was casting a fishing line out into the water. He was “catch and releasing” and at one point pulled a foot long striped bass from the water.


“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 blurb.com for $30.

Written by Mitch Waxman

August 10, 2021 at 11:00 am

tinsel emptiness

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Friday

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The 11th of July was meant to be a “Manhattanhenge” night, and despite the gloomy weather a humble narrator decided to throw the dice and see what could be seen from up on the Kosciuszcko Bridge. The weather precluded any sort of henge, but what – I’m not going to set up the tripod and get busy after shlepping over here from Astoria?

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Obviously, this shot was gathered a bit earlier than the first one. Heavy humidity and low flying clouds marred the astronomical phenomena of Manhattanhenge, wherein the burning thermonuclear eye of god itself’s transit through the sky aligns neatly with the street grid of NYC’s master cylinder. Regardless, I was digging the fact that the skyscrapers were actually scraping sky.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The bum foot and pulled muscle in my back resulted in me waiting for yet another cab to carry my sorry butt back to HQ in Astoria. I’ve discovered that if you stand on the Maspeth side of the street, as opposed to the LIC side, Lyft knocks a few bucks off the fare. That’s a pro tip for y’all.

See you next week. Vote Quimby.


“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 blurb.com for $30.

Written by Mitch Waxman

July 23, 2021 at 11:00 am

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