Residents of a Fort Greene apartment building have been plagued for more than a year by mysterious garbage bags filled with pee.

The Pee Bags, pictured above, are substantial in size, particularly when one considers the relatively modest amount of urine the human bladder can hold. According to WebMD, the standard capacity for an adult bladder is 400 to 600 mL. According the box of Glad Tall Kitchen Quick-Tie Bags located in my cupboard, the standard capacity for an adult kitchen bag is around 13 gallons, or 49.2 L.

This has been problematic for the residents of 301 Cumberland Street, who since November 2013 have been living with a neighbor who prefers to dump his or her mostly full urine bags down the garbage chute. It would be one thing if the bags remained intact, but because they are designed to hold stuff like coffee filters and discarded kale scraps and not large quantities of human waste, the sacks tend to erupt once they hit the ground, exploding in the basement like giant grotesque water balloons. “Our basement has become a truly foul place to go,” a tipster told Brownstoner, in what was perhaps the second most profound understatement made this week. The laundry room is also located in the basement.

Dermot, the building's management company, has been peripherally aware of the issue but has thus far failed to display adequate levels of panic. Finally, a group of tenants banded together to urge the end of the urine tyranny, pressing Dermot for action. The company responded by posting the following note:


A) They should have written "Uringent," because what is life without laughter or cringing? B) Why does Dermot think it is communicating with a rational entity that will read and comprehend a polite notice posted in the foyer? "Oh, I'm sorry!" the guilty party will say. "I didn't realize my kitchen bags filled with enormous volumes of stale urine were so disruptive to the building's welfare! I will amend my conduct immediately."

More than likely, the residents of 301 Cumberland are living in the midst of a quiet, large-scale hostage situation involving several dozen kidnapped humans or farm animals. And what must it be like walking the building's halls knowing everyone—old Mitzy Kavanaugh and her tea cozies in 5D, the young couple with matching green track suits in 3L—is a potential suspect? Lock your doors, people, and tonight, flush your toilet a little harder.