The Newtown Pentacle

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Posts Tagged ‘Monitor

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– photo by Mitch Waxman

Hardly breaking news, but when wandering around the other day, I came across the famous Jackson Hole Airline Diner which had a brief appearance in the classic 1990 film “Goodfellas”. Here amongst the blessed hills of Astoria, we make it a point of acknowledging when one of our own gets famous, and you don’t get more famous than appearing in a Scorcese film.

Worth a shot or two, thought your humble narrator.


The ‘Idlewild Airport’ scenes used the cargo buildings of Kennedy Airport. Idlewild became Kennedy Airport in 1963, but it’s near to New York’s other main airport, LaGuardia, that you’ll find the ‘Airline Diner’, where the grown-up Hill (Ray Liotta) and pal Tommy DeVito (Joe Pesci) steal a truck. It’s now part of the Jackson Hole franchise. Confusingly, but thankfully, it keeps the famous old neon ‘Airline’ sign. You can grab a burger in the classic pink and chrome interior of the Jackson Hole Diner, 69-35 Astoria Boulevard at 70th Street in Queens (tel: 718.204.7070).

– photo by Mitch Waxman

I’ve only eaten here once, and that was after a funeral, so can’t really say how the food is.

The star of the show in this place is the neon signage and supremely modern design, if modern is still considered something that was in vogue 40-50 years ago. Relicts like this always remind me how remarkably dynamic the culture of urban and industrial design once was, and how static it has became today.

Think about it, this sign is probably older than you are, but still looks modern.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

So little has actually changed in the last half century, from the fundamentals point of view. Sure, the technology has advanced but we’re still driving cars which a driver from 1972 would instantly know how to operate. It may be playing on your phone, but it’s still “I Love Lucy” you’re watching. There’s a new Superman movie coming out this year, a character which was first introduced to an audience in 1938- 74 years ago.

Just saying… we were supposed to have moving sidewalks, jet packs, and mile high buildings with trains running across their roofs by now…

for a page at which features a shot of Ray Liotta and Joe Pesci at the location in the Goodfellas movie, click here

– illustration courtesy wikipedia

Also, this coming weekend there will be a huge celebration going on in Greenpoint at the Monitor Museum as they celebrate the 150th anniversary of the launching of America’s first ironclad.

Check out for details on the parties, parades, and other events they’re offering. I’ll be around, see you there.

Written by Mitch Waxman

January 27, 2012 at 3:43 am

delicate individual

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– photo by Mitch Waxman

Less than 2 weeks ago, I was wandering around in Greenpoint, heading for the street address of Continental Iron Works- the ship yard where the USS Monitor was laid down at West St. between Calyer and Quay near the Bushwick inlet. It was on Greenpoint Avenue when the shot above was stumbled across, close to where Newell crosses (or perhaps crossed) it. The big attractions in this neighborhood are the Newtown Creek Waste Water Treatment Plant and the Greenpoint Avenue Bridge, of course, but the acquisition of certain geographic knowledge is critical to several of my irksome studies at the moment (and even if the site has been obliterated in modernity), the efficacy of certain… theories of mine… depends on direct observation.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

While wandering about, the attention of several itinerant laborers became focused upon me, and although their jocular suggestions about destinations for my camera were titillating, my nervous nature took control over my ambitions for the afternoon and an effort was made to remove myself from their company in the fastest manner possible. The step of a coward is a quick one, but this odd truck trailer was spotted and demanded attention. I’m positive that someone else got this before me, likely Ms. Heather, but for a single moment your humble narrator stood tall to bring you its amusing visage.

…Also, I didn’t know the 7 train ran in Greenpoint…

Written by Mitch Waxman

April 6, 2011 at 12:15 am

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