Pet Peeves


Brown Friday

By Mark Crantz

While the rest of the country celebrated Black Friday, Laguna Beach contended with Brown Friday, when a broken sewer value was finally fixed. Workers celebrated by lighting matches to get rid of the smell. An LA tourist in for the day remarked, “I didn’t smell ####, only matches. It was kind of nostalgic. Reminded me of my smoking days when I was 55 pounds lighter and had one chin, instead of four. Now, I’m the current record holder of the most chin ups in my 1968 high school graduating class.”

For locals, it was a Thanksgiving better to forget when 1.4 million gallons of wastewater began spilling from a corroded sewer pipe valve into Aliso Creek and coastal waters. The spill forced the closure of beaches from Crystal Cove to San Clemente. A Michigan surfer said, “I was riding a good one when I hit the skids. And I mean, literally, hit the skids. It was awful. Couldn’t wash off the stuff. The in-laws insisted I eat outside in front of the Ring doorbell where they could keep an eye on me while sparing their noses. While I couldn’t see them, I’ll never forget hearing them go around the table and say they were most thankful that the family dog liked the new me, so I didn’t have to eat alone.”

The portion of pipe that burst was under constant pressure and created a 30-foot geyser. “It was awful,” a worker explained. “We couldn’t get near it to fix it. One guy suggested we helicopter the Digester building over it and call it a day.” Instead, the city decided it was safer to discharge the spillage right into the ocean. In an ecological gesture of kindness, city officials lifted the fishing ban for two hours before discharge, to give fish a fighting chance to catch a fisherman and avoid a stinky and ignoble death.

Local experts with advanced degrees in ####, believe the breakage was caused by too many relatives visiting Laguna residents. “Our sewage system can take care of in-state butts, no problem. But multiple out-of-state butts can tax the system. It’s nobody’s fault. We know how relatives are. They’re full of #### when they get here; spew their ####; then we have to wipe them with money to cut their stays short; while enduring a final goodbye from them to do it again next Thanksgiving at their places, instead of ours. We go along to get rid of them even though we know it will never happen at their places.”

On Friday the city issued a statement. “The valve has been fixed. We thank city residents for doing their part by holding it in for the last few days. You are now free to go. Your gut wrenching patriotism is much appreciated. Free matches are now available at City Hall.”

Crantz tells the Indy that he was out of town at the time of the disaster. But no butts about it, he’s proud of his fellow Lagunans for holding tough.

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