Not long ago I described to you how I was forced by one of my loath-some descendants to "baby-sit" her rotten little off-spring. As you may recall, the miserable brats showed me something I had never before witnessed: They pushed a small black box into a large, metal box with a glass front, and, shortly thereafter, an image appeared upon the glass of a hideous yellow ostrich-monster. I was apoplectic with fright, terrified that the feathered leviathan would spring out at me and devour my aged bones!
Recently, I told my man-servant Standish of the horrific event and how lucky I was to emerge from it unmolested. Standish said I should not have felt any fear, for the yellow ostrich-monster was but an image, and did not actually exist in physical form. He said that the image was relayed to the metal box by a process kindred to the manner in which moving-daguerreotypes are created, and added that the enormous canary-beast was not an animal at all, but a sort of puppet featured with many other puppets upon the metal box.
Puppets! T. Herman Zweibel set a-fright by mere puppetry! The infamy! I told Standish that I wished to meet with several of these puppet bastards, so that I may tell them that I am not afraid of them, and that they should not put on airs, for I am their better in society. Standish's brow furrowed at my words, but I told him to set to it without delay.
Later that evening, I was carried down to my private amusement annex, where a small theatre had been set up. The little curtain was raised, and two puppets emerged. "Now listen here, you jackanapes," I shouted, "enough of this horse-play. I resent this churlish treatment to which I have been grievously subjected, and demand immediate apologies from you and your kin."
But they did not respond, proceeding to punish one another with sticks, which they grasped in their little hands. At first I thought this was another display of their hateful impudence, but I soon realized that this was likely their way to atone for their prior misbehavior, a sort of self-flagellation, if you will.
Be that as it may, I still hold that puppets are a beastly kind, and have no deserving place in polite society.
T. Herman Zweibel, the great grandson of Onion founder Friedrich Siegfried Zweibel, was born in 1868, became editor of The Onion at age 20, and persisted in various editorial posts until his launching into space in 2001. Zweibel's name became synonymous with American business success in the 20th century. Many consider him the “Father Of American Journalism,” also the title of his well-known 1943 biography, written by Norman Rombauer.