|Onions was an "underground newspaper" put out by some disaffected students up at Raytown High School. (I went to Raytown South, so I didn't know any of them). Using the available technology, they cranked out this legal-sized typewriter-written publication. In April '72 (my junior year) I was asked (through some connection I can't remember any more) to do the cover of Volume 1, Issue #13. To get a feel for the non-visual content of Onions, take a look at these passages from the same issue:
Running From Behind (excerpt)
As I was walking slowly past a riverbed
A hummingbird flew lowly across my head
Looking at all my nectar surroundings
I began to feel sorry for those that are dead
You wonder if your hoping and caring for someone with no
come back response is maybe a sign--
or maybe that sign was always there-- but you drowned it
in your foreign wines...
Emperor Nixon Does It Again! (excerpt)
As many of you who listened to the news this past weekend know, the South Vietnamese were doing a pretty nifty job of handling things on their own, then they got hit back by North Vietnam, and, like an over-protective, over-bearing mother, the United States zooms over to the rescue, most certainly destroying the South Vietnamese's confidence in themselves as soldiers. The South Vietnamese have pretty well proven themselves to be as equally competent as the U.S., if not more....
--Cathy Moritz Mandina
Onions forged on through my senior year, and I did two more covers for them: Volume 2, Issue #2 (December 4, 1972) and Volume 2, Issue #6 (sometime in early '73). Here are synopses of the literary highlights from those issues:
Volume 2, Issue #2 featured...
...an apparently sincere request for helpers in digging up a suspected illicit human burial "between the first two trees you come upon (heading South) in the field at 63rd St. and Willow" (with map)... an editorial stating that, contrary to current trends in enlightened thinking, "public high school education is excellent preparation for adult life" (one example among many stated that "giving youth the opportunity to become involved with minimum effieiency, zero output organizations like student council will acquaint them with senseless bureaucracy, a basic principle of American government").
Volume 2, Issue #6 featured...
...angry comment on the Ray South official newpaper's KISSING LEADS TO SYPHILIS INFECTION headline... rather than turn to drugs, why not turn to Jesus?... angry comment on the removal of the Boy's Room doors at Ray South [it's true, they really did]... anti-Jock broadsides containing comparisons to Richard Speck, James Earl Ray, the Texas Tower sniper, Hitler, Stalin... reader's opinion: "You shouldn't even be able to use Jimi Hendrix's name in the paper because he is the BEST and your paper is not."