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For the past year-and-a-half, the District has been blessed with its own Onion-esque satirical website: Stuck in DC. It became a go-to laugh for D.C. residents and managed to receive accolades from the likes of The Washington Post and DCist with such articles as “I Only Watch the Super Bowl and Read POLITICO For the Ads,” “Washington’s Standing Water, Ranked By Potability,” “13 Ways to Criticize PoPville, Ranked,” and “Reactions to PJ Harvey Recording a Song About Ward 7, Ranked.” There are also its ubiquitous “This Is Not New York” street stickers that poke fun of Washingtonians’ prickliness at D.C. being compared to New York City.
But dedicated Stuck in DC readers have noticed it hasn’t published anything for the last few months. That’s because, in a twist of irony, the site’s founder and sole contributor Bill Petrich moved to New York City in late July.
Petrich, who’s originally from the Minneapolis area, moved to D.C. after college in the fall of 2011. After a few years of soaking up D.C. culture, he started Stuck in DC in 2015 to mock many of the trends he was seeing, particularly among his own demographic, “the young white millennial population.”
That’s most evident in some of Stuck’s best articles, like “Civil Libertarians Denounce DC’s Eagle Cam,” “Local Liberal Shocked To Find Self Outraged Walmart Isn’t Building More Stores in DC,” and “Activists Campaign to ‘Make DC Weird’ Weird.” It may come off as insider-y media fodder, but for Petrich it was a way to subtly mine for laughs a lot of the faux outrage he saw among many mostly young white transplants in D.C.
The site lists three primary contributors—Xavier_from_new_york, Brio, and Walter, Petrich’s previously identified pseudonym. But what few actually know is that the others are Petrich too: He’s been the sole contributor to Stuck in DC (save for two guest posts) under three different fictionalized voices, which is what helped him land his job in New York City.
His thoughts on life in The Big Apple so far? “I like my job, but I hate New York,” he says.
For the time being, Petrich doesn’t have any plans to keep Stuck in DC going—save for maybe a farewell post—and he doesn’t foresee moving back to D.C. in the near future.
“Doing Stuck in DC made me fall in love with D.C.,” Petrich says. “This is a wonderful city, and I loved being part of the cultural conversation here.”