Mad River Union
ARCATA, APRIL 1 – Despite their powers of absorbency, Arcata’s couches have historically proven unable to soak up the oceans of spilled bong juice unleashed on them daily since the 1960s. Much of this precious, THC-laden brownwater resource is simply poured into drains or flushed with pride down toilets.
Now, Arcata’s plumbing has become so encrusted with bong deposits that the gooey material is forming up and fighting back – almost with a will of its own.
All over town last week, those with indoor plumbing suffered eruptions of bongly miasma oozing out of their sinks, toilets and storm drains. As the hash-like goo flowed free of charge into Arcata homes, not everyone was complaining.
“This tastes like that ’Lumbo I used to score,” said Colt Seavers, longtime Plaza hangabout.
He and other Plazoids rushed to the intersection of Seventh and I streets, where a massive glob of hash-like bong sludge was welling up.
Piling up like brains-craving zombies, the THC-crazed ’Zoids began shaving off rinds of the concentrated cannabis and stuffing them into their pockets. One came across a well-preserved "Chesbro for City Council" button embedded deep in the cannabinoid amber.
Activist Fhyre Phoenix heard the tumult all the way over on the Plaza, where he was protesting the Temperance League water fountain. Rushing over, Phoenix hastily scrawled a new slogan over his anti-DHMO sign reading, “Don’t Bogart That Sludge, My Friends!”
The bong residue backed up all the way out to Blakeslee Avenue, where the gutters flowed with the lava-like goo.
Responding to the crisis, the City Council moved with dispatch to set up a series of Community Dialogue on Bong Buildup scoping sessions, but had to cancel them because of the butcher paper shortage.
Instead, the council moved to set up a temporary command post on Blakeslee from which to direct repairs from close by, rather than from distant City Hall.
On a unanimous vote, the council authorized construction of a $3.3 million recovery center where equipment and personnel will be staged. The new building will use lumber sustainably harvested from the Arcata Community Forest.
It will include three equipment bays, a conference room, employee lounge, and a small gym with sauna and hot tubs for sewer workers.
The exterior will be clad in stained redwood. A large skylight will allow natural illumination inside, symbolizing Arcata’s commitment to renewable energy.
An interpretive center open to the public will display maps showing Arcata’s sewer lines and other infrastructure. An interactive display for children will allow them to push “Tommy Potplug” with magnets through a small channel representing a sewer pipeline as the wad of goo slowly congeals into a city-wide clog.
At the insistence of Councilmember Susan Ornelas, a $40,000 mural on the building’s street-facing side will depict proper, eco-safe methods of cannabis processing and disposal. “This shouldn’t be a best-kept secret,” she said.
As an artistic addition, the controversial bicycle boulevard “wheel” at 10th and I streets will be rolled over and repainted as an energy-focusing mandala.
Landscaping will include an array of native plants, plus a nature trail with interpretive signs. That will be co-located with a parcourse for eco-infused fitness.
After an architect is selected and plans finalized, construction is expected to begin within six months. The facility should be ready to receive equipment and workers by next February.
Once everything’s in place, the sewer repairs should take no more than three days, after which the center will be demolished.