Illustrations Joseph Kaplan
Advisers to the Superfund cleanup of the Gowanus Canal have suggested the project have a mascot, the Post recently reported. May we humbly suggest:
Carmen the Carcinogenic Crab
The EPA warned fishers and crabbers not to eat their catch from the Gowanus, as those creatures could be contaminated with carcinogens. “Don’t eat me, I’m crabby!” Kids’ll love her—and learn.
Petey the Reticulated Python
In 2008, a giant snake was spotted at the end of Degraw Street, probably having escaped from a nearby home.
Leechy the Parasite
When, in 2003, a loveable lost seal was rescued from the canal, she was malnourished, dehydrated, and infested with parasites like the equally loveable Leechy!
DeDe the Decomposing Human Remains
In Joseph O’Neill’s Netherland, one character’s body is retrieved from the Gowanus. In real life, the canal is said to have been a Mafia dumping ground.