Smudged Out

“Chalk up this one up as a winner. A bright spot on an increasingly bleak and depressing internet.”

In 2015, that was my blub-worthy assessment of The Albany Smudge, the Capital Region’s own Onion-esque satire website. Yesterday the humor page posted some bad news: they’ve had enough.

Publisher “Burt Wilkersonn” explained why the site is ceasing publication in a story dated June 18:

“We decided to stop before we completely sucked. I mean, how many times can you make fun of doctors’ wives and their naturally gifted children in Bethlehem, or the underprivileged folks of South Colonie?”

Albany Smudge possessed a keen understanding of the area and knew the exact location of its soft spots. They mercilessly jabbed at cultural touch-points — especially our stereotypes of local towns and their inhabitants.

It’s sad to see it go, but easy to understand. It must have taken a lot of time to write the well-crafted stories they published. Their output was prodigious, putting out new editions every week since November 2014.

I can’t say if Albany Smudge every caught on in the way it deserved. There’s so much content for people to sift through today — much more than when I used to publish Albany Eye, more than a decade ago.

The most impressive thing about Albany Smudge may be this: even when it took sharp aim, it was never mean. These days, that’s saying a lot.

9 responses to “Smudged Out

  1. I totally enjoyed the Smudge. My favorite was the article about how the guy discovered his father was an undercover cop because he would go to the rest area by Exit 9 on the Northway. Hope this is just a hiatus and not the end.

    • Let’s hope so.

      I’m pretty curious about who wrote it. Having been involved in something done anonymously, that’s a topic that’s of special interest to me.

  2. I believe this is your cue to bring back the Albany Eye. Delmartians and Slingerlanders and their spawn cannot go unobserved.

    • I’d love to do that — but work saps so much of my brain capacity these days, I couldn’t keep up. It’s not that I have more work now, just less brain.

  3. Monday mornings are really gonna suck now. One of the few things I looked forward to reading on the web.

  4. I’m glad the Smudge was enjoyed by so many. I joined as a writer in spring of 2016 and was sad to see it end. It was a good ride.

    If you or anyone else starts or revives a satire site I would love to contribute!

  5. Have you stumbled over this one, perchance . . .

    https://timesboredom.wordpress.com/

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