Have you ever thought about the sewers and how they are cleaned? Well, now is the perfect time to start, because the NY Times has a fun infrastructure article that will answer many of your questions.

For instance, whatever falls in the sewer stays in the catch basins for about three years and is called "sludge" (litter, street debris like leaves, maybe some cellphones). The Department of Environmental Protection has a great graphic of what's in the basin. The Times reports, "Between half a ton and a ton is pulled from the average basin" and they are cleaned by workers "mucking out the basins and power-flushing them with water at hundreds of pounds of pressure per square inch." Also, there are 148,000 sewers in the city!

The DEP, like everyone else, was worried about the possible storm and was cleaning some basins along the Thanksgiving Day Parade route on Central Park West earlier this week. James J. Roberts, deputy commissioner in charge of the sewer system, explained, "This was on the margins of a big-deal rainstorm. It’s a high-profile event. You don’t want it to go bad for something dumb."

And it's a tedious job—check out this video: