When Dealing With A Stubborn Stool Try The Twist & Shout Technique–City Confronts Old Sewer System

UPDATE: City Council Monday night tabled the measure at the request of council President Aidee Nieves, following an appeal by Councilwoman Maria Pereira to do the same.

You think Phil Medley and Bert Russell were thinking about a dance floor when they wrote the ditty Twist & Shout? No, they were reaching for the commode, begging for mercy.

John Lennon’s hoarse-throttled lead vocal for the Beatles cover version of the Isley Brothers take sounds like it was recorded on the throne which it probably was to barricade himself from all that estrogen chasing him.

How to deal with a stubborn stool when it happens to you?

Sit firmly. Twist to the left, twist to the right, twist so fine, press elbow firmly on stomach now to work it on out!

Well, shake it, shake it, shake it, baby, now
Well, shake it, shake it, shake it, baby, now
Well, shake it, shake it, shake it, baby, now
Ah, ah, ah, ah

Try it, technique works. (Don’t tell anyone I told you.)

For a half century now Bridgeport’s archaic wastewater treatment system is the stubborn stool that must be worked out. The City Council has before it a proposal for hundreds of millions of dollars in improvements required by a remedy order between the state and Water Pollution Control Authority.

Wonder why part of the East Side of Bridgeport is under water during heavy rains? Damn storm and sewer drains aren’t separated in some areas. The South End? Thirty years ago firefighters needed canoes to access Seaside Village during a 50-year storm.

Paging retired firefighters Donald Day and Ron Mackey.

I swear I saw a bluefish mauling a bunker on Iranistan Avenue.

About 20 years ago I cleaned toilets for 10 months. I was an exceptional toilet cleaner. I saw things that would make a water rat wince. I have expertise on this issue.

Bridgeport was one of the leaders of the industrial revolution. All kinds of untreated crap was flowing into the harbor out to Long Island Sound. Still is in some ways.

It’s one of those things people don’t talk much about, the unseen serpentine travels of sewage down below.

Capacity is an issue. Modern infrastructure as well. The town of Trumbull has skin in the game. How did Trumbull commence a commercial build-out 50 years ago? The town’s sewer lines hook into Bridgeport’s. There’s a heavy cost to build and maintain the underground railroad of unspeakable things. Eventually commercial and residential customers were hit with user fees.

All of that combined gazillions travels to Bridgeport treatment plants in the West End and East End for processing.

A decade ago there was talk of Bridgeport, Trumbull and Monroe creating a mini municipality water authority to finance needed improvements. Monroe wants in because commercial development is limited without sewer line hookups. Easton is not a problem. Say sewer in the town and they come after with hatchets.

Trumbull can’t finance a treatment plant on its own. It’s a fortune and where the hell is the stuff gonna be treated and released, the Pequonnock River? Good luck convincing the state of that. Theoretically Trumbull can opt out of Bridgeport’s system with notice to connect with Stratford or Fairfield. What would that entail? Sounds like a nightmare.

Monday night the City Council, at the request of Council President Aidee Nieves, tabled the matter to act on that stubborn stool.



  1. Wait a minute….
    I just read an article in the CT Post about this and it didn’t say a thing about bonding by the city of Bport.
    It talked about a 20 year loan by the WPCA and grants from the Clean Water Fund.
    What the F was Marshall Marcus talking about? Not to forget JML, Jeff Cohort, Maria and others.

    1. @Bob Walsh
      Read the Agenda for tonight’s City Council meeting
      Almost 400 MILLION DOLLARS to be bonded for WPCA
      Almost 4 MILLION DOLLARS for the bond counsel
      Rates for Bridgeport WPCA to go up 67% over the next 8-10 years
      Trumbull can leave in 2 years with notice and Bridgeport ois required to help them woth permits for hooking up elsewhere.

      Don’t depend on reporting in the newspapers, you have to read minutes and agendas posted for committees, commissions, boards and the City Council.

      Speaking of which where was the required notice on the WOCA Website for the PUBLIC hearing about this request for money????????????????????

      That 20 year loan by the WPCA is not a loan from a bank taken out and repaid by the WPCA…they don’t have the authority to borrow like that and repay. It is a way of disguising the 20 year 2% Bonds that will be GENERAL OBLIGATIONS of the City of Bridgeport.

      1. You have cut to the chase. Will you call me at 203-259-9642 to compare notes at your convenience. Perhaps we might find a question or two that need asking and can be answered, fully, accurately, honestly? Time will tell.

  2. Lennie, during the time of that flooding over thirty years ago I was a resident here in Seaside Village and I didn’t evacute. I’ve survive a number of floods down here, I’ve two new furnaces, replaced plus hot water tank and a washing machine and dryer from my basement being flooded. Below is a little information about Seaside Villge Homes and floods.

    “Burnham Street was originally a creek used by the sportsmen of Bridgeport as a storage place for boats in which they went out on the meadows to shoot water fowls. Albert Square was formerly a cove in this inlet and was laid out so as to avoid bad foundation and furnish a breathing space in the village. The site of this village for years as a dump used by the City and by the Crane Company for their foundry material and shows the possibility of reclaiming land for housing purposes.”

    Seaside Village’s Master Plan gave Bridgeport’s proposal a credible research and data-based document that addressed the kind of sustainability issues that the Rebuild by Design team would focus on for the city. Yale’s prior involvement with Seaside Village’s Master Plan and the knowledge base that they acquired from this project enabled them to link their research to the larger scale issues facing Bridgeport that this national competition was addressing and helped to secure funding for Bridgeport.[51]

    The city was awarded $10 million for planning, design, and construction via the federal government’s Rebuild by Design competition. Arcadis, which had been advising Bridgeport on resilience since 2014, helped the city secure another $41 million in funding through HUD’s National Disaster Resilience competition for 2015-16. Construction should begin in the Spring of 2019 and be completed in the Fall of 2022. Projects include a $6.5 million storm-water system and a 2.5-acre storm-water park to manage water runoff along Iranistan.


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