Cohoes Swallowed By Category-5 Pot Hole

By Scott Salad

Published March 22nd, 2015

Cohoes From Google Earth

COHOES — Harry Greem floundered around the evacuation center near Cohoes Friday, not quite sure what to do after learning that his city was consumed by a large pothole.

“I feel like I'm living a nightmare,” said Greem, 76, who’d been running errands in Latham Tuesday when the phenomenon occurred. “When I got back, all the roads into Cohoes were closed and police were telling me to turn around.”

Sheriff's deputies informed the retired paper clip salesmen that the three million potholes that dotted his city coalesced into an unusually large and continuous depression, and that everything east of Baker Avenue had fallen into it.

Media outlets are now dubbing the event “The Spindle City Cat-5 Concavity,” referring to the Category-5 designation on the Jules-Mandlebaum Pot Hole Classification Scale.

“Cohoes has been on our radar for some time now,” said Dr. Pat Smearman, a potholologist with the Erosion Institute of Northern Wisconsin. “The city rarely repaves its roads, opting — unwisely, if you ask me — to patch them each spring. That's the kind of quick fix that often leads to long-term instability. Couple that with brutally harsh winters and you got yourself a recipe for a Cat-5 pothole.”

Miraculously, local EMS crews have yet to report any major injuries. After parachuting into the 20,000-foot fissure, Notch Meyer of Waterford EMS radioed the good news Thursday.

“We have a few bumps and bruises. Nothing serious. No fatalities, thank God. And everyone seems to be in relatively good spirits,” Meyer reported.

That was welcome news to Greem, who hasn't heard from his wife of 35 years since Tuesday morning. When asked to comment on reports that Margie not only attended bingo at St. Michaels Church Wednesday evening, but also walked home with a cool $37, he brightened.

“It's an absolute miracle,” he said.

Meanwhile, officials visiting the evacuation center in Watervliet Friday said while the outpouring of support has been tremendous, the people of Cohoes are not yet out of the dark.

“I'd like to say that Cohoes is one of the most resilient communities you're ever going to find,” said Albany County Administrator Kinsington Bellamy. “But I'm not really sure if that's true. I mean, how could anyone make that kind of statement? Maybe Colonie or Menands are more resilient than Cohoes. Shit, maybe most of the communities around here are. I don't know. I guess if they figure out a way to live and do business down there in that pothole then I'd be willing to call them resilient.”

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is expected to visit the hole Monday, leading some to speculate that he suspects that Cohoes could be one of the legendary gates of hell.

If true, and he were able to gain entrance to the underworld after somehow defeating the three-headed dog, Cerebrus, he could then effectively fulfill his central campaign promise to usher in the End of Days.


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