The Newtown Pentacle

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It’s National Escargot Day, in these United States.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

A humble narrator is fairly crispy around the edges, and in a state best described as “too little butter scraped over too much bread.” The ridiculous schedule I’ve been keeping throughout the months of April and May is beginning to wear me down a bit, and I’ve got literally thousands of photos to process and deliver to various entities. Busy is good, admittedly, but “man alive” do I need a day or two off.

Pictured above is one of the Cormorant breeding/habitat stands which are observable beneath the Bayonne Bridge, at the intersection of the Kill Van Kull and Newark Bay

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Ultimately, it’s the dog who suffers. Poor Zuzu the dog didn’t get out for her slow motion walk last night until after midnight. She’s a bit pissed off at me, my dog. Saying that, she was quite engaged with the late night sniffing, probably because every other dog in the neighborhood had already taken care of business and every tree pit was redolent with their scents and “pee mail.”

Pictured above, the spring blossoms of a tree you might observe on the corner of 45th street and 34th avenue in Astoria, Queens.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

It’s entirely likely that, as we descend into the madness of a holiday weekend, you’re going to be greeted with single image posts tomorrow, Friday, and Monday, so apologies are offered. My services have been engaged by one of the local newspapers to photograph the Maspeth Memorial Day parade on Sunday, incidentally, so if you’re there and you see some weird looking old guy with a camera and a Newtown Creek Alliance hat, say hi.

Pictured above, a double entendre laden bit of signage from Third Avenue in Manhattan. If you don’t know the street slang meaning of “Toss my salad” I’d suggest you google it, as this is a family blog.

Upcoming Tours and events

Newtown Creek Alliance and Riverkeeper Visioning, June 3rd, 1-4 p.m..

Imagine the future of Newtown Creek with Riverkeeper and NCA at the Kingsland Wildfowers Green Roof (520 Kingsland Avenue in Greenpoint) details here.

Newtown Creek Alliance History lecture with NCA historian Mitch Waxman, June 3rd, 5:00- 7:30p.m.

An free hour long lecture and slideshow about Newtown Creek’s incredible history at the gorgeous Kingsland Wildfowers Green Roof (520 Kingsland Avenue in Greenpoint) followed by a walk around the roof and a Q&A – details here.

“follow” me on Twitter- @newtownpentacle


Written by Mitch Waxman

May 24, 2017 at 1:00 pm

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It’s National Ravioli Day, in these United States.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

It’s been so gray and cold for the last few weeks, I think it’s time for an injection of warm colors, and a break from the photos of intensely ugly things which a humble narrator normally presents. Don’t worry, next week this – your Newtown Pentacle – will dive back into the hellish reality which we’ve created for ourselves, but for right now… flowers, and puppies, y’know – the good things.

That’s a happy, busy, and quite buzzy bee above, whose countenance was recorded on the north – or Greek – side of Astoria last summer.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Speaking of Greek, that’s what a certain part of Greece looked like the last time I was there. Specifically, it’s a village house in Crete, during the early spring. The problem with waving a camera around in that part of the world is that there’s just too much light. Controlling the amount of information hitting the camera sensor is quite an endeavor at that latitude.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Closer to home, specifically my own porch, and an example of the domestic bounty which Our Lady of the Pentacle promulgates. Similar issues with an abundance of light are encountered in the shot above. Heavily saturated images like the one above are difficult to develop. The original raw shot was just a blob of brick red, and it took a bit of kajiggering to arrive at something that more closely resembled reality.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Sunflowers terrified me as a small child. My next door neighbor, a Polish holocaust survivor named Mr. Klein, was a prolific gardener who used his back yard plot to grow vegetables and fruit. To keep pesky kids like myself from jumping his fence in pursuit of an errant baseball, Mr. Klein planted an impenetrable hedge of sunflowers along his fence.

Cannot tell you how many times a young but already humble narrator stood there in terror, transfixed with loathing, staring at the wall of rotting sunflower heads swarming with bees. One still has dreams and night terrors related to this.

“follow” me on Twitter- @newtownpentacle

Written by Mitch Waxman

March 20, 2017 at 11:00 am

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