Now that gentrification has come to the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn, N.Y., it’s time to clean it up! The EPA is on the case, although it’s going to take decades to cleanse this narrow cul-de-sac of a waterway so foul that nothing can live in its opaque waters.

In order to get people excited about the process of turning the canal into something that will stop depressing local property values, the Gowanus Community Advisory Group has decided that the project needs a mascot, reports Gary Buiso at the New York Post.

“The cleanup will be long, boring and probably disgusting, so we want to make sure people are aware of what’s going on in an easy and fun way,” said Eymund Diegel, a member of the Advisory Group.

So far, and for once I am not making this up, contenders for the mascot include a whale named Sludgie, as well as a muskrat, shark, mussels, jellyfish, protozoans, and a seal called Gowanda. The Post mocked up a few of these potential spokescreatures, and the results are about as funny as you’d expect from a newspaper.

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So we came up with our own. Meet Lucius the star-nosed mole. These mammals aren’t native to New York State, but they look cool and are marginally better than the other idea we had, Hieronymus the sooty mangabey.

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