Every so often, I have my man-servant Standish bring a satchel of readers' letters to my bed-chamber. I like to acquaint my-self with the diverse concerns and views of my readership. Due to the volume, however, I am unable to answer all of the mails. There-fore, I have selected a few letters at random whose content I shall do my best to address.
Dear Mr. Zweibel, When are you finally going to die? Your column is easily the worst thing in The Onion and is neither insightful nor enjoyable. Do us all a favor and die. Die! Die, die, die, die, die! -Neil Bleier, Sacramento, CA
My Dear Mr. Bleier, Yes, I have wanted to die for a long time, but the combined forces of favorable genes and the fickle finger of Fate have prevented this. Until the time of my passing, I shall continue to write my Message To The Publisher, which I have written since 1896. In spite of your apparent contempt for the column, you will have to continue to read it, an action made mandatory by an act of Congress in 1923.
Dear Mr. Zweibel, Are you ever going to marry your sweetheart, Miss Bernadette Fiske? Also, why hasn't Mr. Tin, your robot nemesis, put in an appearance in a while? -Shelley Mancuso, email@example.com
My Dear Miss Mancuso, It would be selfish of me to devote my entire column to my personal life, as this is an election year and the hated Whigs are once again threatening to seize the Presidency. I am puzzled by the cryptic series of numbers and letters after your name. It looks like the enigmatic communication of an artificial mechanical gentle-man. Are you a sympathizer of the villainous Mr. Tin? Or perhaps you are the evil metal scourge him-self! Blast you, Tin!
Mr. T. Human Zweibel Or Occupant, Do NOT throw this envelope away! Your unique, personalized sweepstakes-entry number 29850492113 may win you one of several TOP PRIZES! Enter TODAY! –Family Clearinghouse Sweepstakes
Huzzah! A thrilling chance to win a TOP PRIZE! But wait: Who is "Occupant"? Is there a chance he could usurp my winnings? This must not happen! Standish! Procure the assassin! This "Occupant" must be stopped before he can lay claim to my TOP PRIZE!
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.