Since 1988, American satirical magazine The Onion has published hundreds upon hundreds of articles on the “Area Man.” Articles such as “Is Area Man Going to Finish Fries,” “Area Man Pretty Sure It’s Broken,” and “Area Man Could Eat” offer an endless supply of tired old gags that no sophisticated readme-like magazine would expect readers to enjoy. But area man Joe Sikspack, a 56-year old farmer from Kansas, isn’t laughing.
Last week, Sikspack filed one of the largest lawsuits in American history against The Onion and it’s parent company Tearful Media. Sikspack claims that the content of the area man articles are all based on incidents that occur in his daily life. He is asking for 45% of the company’s profits since it’s inception, a sum that amounts to nearly $35.
Earlier this week, readme sat down with Sikspack at his home in Imnotcrying-Youare, Kansas. “I knew they were talking about me the second I saw them articles,” Sikspack said. “Just look at these.” He pulled out a cardboard box of old articles. The box then collapsed, causing him to sigh that they just don’t make things like they used to. “‘Oh Wait, Area Man Not Paul,’ – I got mistaken for Paul last week at a grocery store dog fighting contest; ‘Area Man Pretty Loud at Guitar,’ – I blast my guitar at night to scare off gangs of homeless English majors (poor saps should’ve studied art history).”
Sikspack then realized he had lost something and swore that he had just seen it a minute ago. “See, the Onion uses fake names when writing the Area Man stuff cuz they don’t want you to know that the Area Man is always me.” readme expects that Onion readers will find this lack of originality unsurprising. “I can’t wait till I put the run on these bastards,” said Sikpack. “This is the best thing that’s ever happened to me!” he exclaimed while throwing a poorly coordinated air punch to remind himself that he’s still got it.
readme also spoke to Onion executive Jonas Brothers, who recently relocated his office to a cardboard box in the heart of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile. “The Area Man articles have never about Mr. Sikspack,” said Brothers. He noted that no one on the Onion’s five person staff has even heard of Sikspack. “The Onion is a caring respectful organization that does its best to improve the local community. We have more employees in homeless shelters and soup kitchens than any other company in America. We also support small businesses. Just last year, the Onion stopped providing Internet access at its office, forcing staff to commute to coffee shops to do research, publishing, and recreational masturbation.” Before readme could get further commentary, a rabid hobo wielding a butcher’s knife cut through the walls of the box, forcing readme and Brothers to flee the premises.