Workers with the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development clean a catch basin on St. Claude Ave. in the Upper 9th Ward as rain from Tropical Storm Harvey moves through the area in New Orleans, La. Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017.

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON

Catch basin program inspires sewer humor

Letting the internet name things can lead to some fun results, a lesson City Hall may be learning with its effort to encourage New Orleanians to clean catch basins near their homes.

The Adopt a Catch Basin program includes a site,, that allows residents to sign up to be responsible for particular catch basins, marking them as clean or in need of attention. And, to personalize it a bit, users can give their catch basin a name.

While many users have picked predictably descriptive names — the location of the storm drain or the name of the person or family claiming it — others have gotten a bit more creative.

There are "Catchy McBasinpants" and "Catchy McBasinface," in the spirit of a 2016 online naming poll that nearly saw a British research ship named Boaty McBoatface. Others went with qualitative descriptions, like "Stinky Drain."

Among the handful named after science fiction and fantasy characters, perhaps the most apt was "Sarlacc," the massive subterranean beast in "Return of the Jedi" that appears only as a ravenous mouth and tongue.

And, of course, some names have a bit more of an edge.

"Why did the city spend tax money to make this site?" one person asked, using the naming field.

"MitchBettaHaveMyFloodMoney," said another.