Johanna “Jonnie” Wilder (credited as Jonathan Hart Eddy in The Onion Staff Box) was recruited at Onion Night on a chilly September evening in 1988. Jonnie heard the seductive sounds of torch-song jazz combo emanating from the State Street Center on the way home from a Narcotics Anonymous meeting and popped in to meet a sloppy drunk Chris Johnson generously offering Tim Keck’s girlfriend as payment in exchange for Thaumaturgy Services Rendered. A proto-otaku weeb, Jonnie graciously accepted, and after waiving the girlfriend offer, was informally pronounced “The Nicest Onion Staffer”, a title which Jonnie still holds today.
Jonnie was raised by a single mother who raised four kids as a bookkeeper, and later married a good and decent man who managed a series of Sears department stores across the central Indiana district. Jonnie’s alcoholic father sold mainframes for IBM and wrote software for insurance companies and refused to buy his children shoes on the principle that “they just outgrow them”.
Jonnie left the cornfields of central Indiana to seek fortune in Chicago, learning graphic design and layout, producing coffee shop zines for skateboarders and emo kids. Jonnie fled that gnarly scene to form a witch coven in Madison, but ended up starting The Onion instead.
A big fan of the hyphenated adjective, Jonnie is a Purdue University Computer Science and Creative Writing alumni, but did not graduate due to disagreements with the faculty on the marijuana-smoking and mandatory-classroom-attendance polices.
Despite crippling early-onset dementia*, Jonnie still writes and illustrates occasionally at Emojiency.com.
* Not actual dementia.