Origin Story: The Saga Of The Tangy Pepper

Get ready for a wild ride with the new Tangy Pepper crew. We're a diverse team of misfits, each with our unique flavor to add to the blend. From the raw wit of Rawbecca Savage, the nostalgic rants of Harold Eights, to Bonita Duval's quirks, and Ronnie Schwoegler's controversial hot takes - we promise you won't be bored.

Inspired By Veggies

Around 1987, I moved from a small Wisconsin town to the bustling Capital City of Madison, Wisconsin. Home of Mayor Paul Soglin, The Mifflin Street Block Party, the Wisconsin Badgers, and The Onion News Paper (America’s Finest News Source). I loved The Onion. Back then, it was published every Wednesday. In the early days, it was pure Madison. It started as a simple 2 pager filled with satire (see the Harvard Lampoon) and what we now call fake News. It soon spread to publish in various metro areas throughout the United States. We’ll do a deep dive some other day. Let’s skip ahead.

The Hook

I don’t know what day it was or what story was picked up, but it was pure gold when it happened. News had spread that the AP had picked up a fake story (rabbit hole#1: something that would go on to happen multiple times). To me, that was it. That was similar to Superman leaping a tall building in a single bound. The writing was so good; I’m sure it still is. I wanted to do that. I wanted and tried to leap a small building.

#Origin Story

Sometime around 2007, I worked at a suburban hospital and got a little bored. I was celebrating my 3rd year with a trendy blog called “The World of Van.” I was enjoying the fact that I was notching thousands of readers each month. It wasn’t enough. That’s when I decided to switch gears and try something new. The Pepper was born. I chose a vegetable to pay homage to The Onion, but it couldn’t simply be The Pepper. I mean, I didn’t want to rip them off completely.

Building The Team

I got to work, started asking around, and even posted an ad on Craigslist to find like-minded people who wanted to write funny. It went something like this; “Looking for people to write funny stuff for free.” – Amazingly, people answered. I would put together a group mostly of people I worked with, including two prominent (but significantly flipping fabulous) surgeons, a nurse named Andi, and a unit clerk we’ll call Zach. It took us two months, but we managed to kick out one issue. It was good. A lot of work. Just like that, it was over.

The Crash

Everyone involved wanted to keep going, grow it, and make it big. Everyone had ideas. It was set to grow beyond my initial intention. Everyone wanted to monetize. This was back before the instant fame of influencers (gag), websites inundated with an overabundance of ads. You had to sell ad space to get the coin back then. I just wanted a funny blog. The Tangy Pepper was finished.

Here We Go Again

Now, here we are again. 14 years later. Bored, nope. I’m just so tired of ad-filled clickbait. Don’t get me wrong, I intend to monetize this piece! (but it will be done tastefully). I needed a creative outlet, whether people read it or not. So I got to work. Now, just 10 days later, we have a website, a plan, and a few writers…um, yeah. So buckle up buttercup!

Before introducing our crew, I want to give credit where credit is due. Let’s talk about the logo of our inaugural launch.

Branding & Our Logo

The font, “CuisineOT Pro,” was created by a talented designer, Alejandro Paul. You can see his profile here at Adobe. Thank you. Our Pepper, who we will call “Tangy,” was created by “elevencreativee”, over at Envato! Thank you guys!

Now, let’s get down to business!

Version 2.0 | The Crew

Rawbecca Savage (Pseudonym)

Thank you, Michael, for that long-winded albeit informative slobber fest. I had yet to learn I was taking over a failed musing. Let’s hope this lasts longer than your first stint in college. A bit about me. I hate everything, so yeah. I once had a cat. I traded it for a pair of used Doc Martens in 1989. I wear them every day. Still do. They more closely resemble sandals now.

With that, I’ll (Rawbecca) take over the introductions. Next, we have:

Harold Eights (Pseudonym)
Host | Tangy Pepper Radio

‘You ever get the feeling that everything in the World is completely f$cked up? So be it.” I’m a nostalgic grunt who may or may not have helmed a pirate radio station for a time. I used to hate everything, but now I just hate Rawbecca. But I am excited to be a contributing writer, and I may drop a podcast from time to time. I am not digging my title, so I’m changing the name to 88.8 RFTP | Radio Free Tangy Pepper. Depends. House arrest sucks, and the studio is just outside my range. Let’s see what happens. Oh, of course, I love BlackJack Gum!

Thank you…Mr. Eights. Another reason you are jobless. Nonetheless, that was…warming. Next up, we have:

Ronnie Schwoegler (Pseudonym)
Editor | Sports

Can you feel the love between those two? That is precisely how I feel about the “chicago bears”. Yes, folks, it’s me, the Mighty Green Bay Packers biggest fan. Born and raised in Wisconsin, I have been offering commentary on pathetic production since 1985! (see what I did there). I will bring you my mostly slanted take on sports because everything I say is the law…even if it’s wrong.

Sweet, just what we need: another man making up lies and selling them as truth 😉 Alright, next:

Bonita Duval
Editor | Lifestyle

My stint here will be short. I am more of a unicorn and rainbows gal, and I’m not that funny. On a serious note, I love food, travel, food. I grew up in a big family on the grand island of Key West (KW). I don’t consider myself a Floridian. When I was younger, KW tried to withdraw from the US. I’ll fill you in on the Great Conch Republic’s failed attempt a little later. I’m happy to be here, I think. To soon to tell.

She mentioned food twice. I don’t think we’ll be seeing any bikini pics. Now this guy:

Mazz Mazzilli (Pseudonym)
Editor | Entertainment

Harsh Becca, DAMN, I love this. I feel right at home. Dysfunction drives creativity. I want to thank Eights for bringing me on. Let’s say we go way back, Pheonix Baby! However, I miss the old Hardman. Let’s see if he loses his sappy schtick and returns to his former glory. Let’s see, I love jeeps, cheesy music, and anything on TV between 1984 and 1992. Everything since then sucks. Except for the Office. Happy to be here.

Last but not least, this guy (who should have told me I was joining a sinking ship)

Michael MacLeish (Pseudonym)
Contributing Author

Sometimes, you work with what you’ve got when you’re just getting started. If life gives you peppers, you make a good salsa. Whatever happens in this venture, I hope it’s a fun ride. We hope to bring on some more writers who need a home to create and open the site as a revenue-sharing platform. The only way to make that happen is to produce some quality work. Let’s get busy.

In Closing

If you like what you read, and even if you don’t, remember, it’s a work in progress, so share a post when you can, and please get involved in a discussion. We want to hear from you.

Do you want to write for Tangy? Awesome, click the envelope at the top and drop us a note. As you can see, quality is something we’re working towards. Even if you are green, let’s give it a go.


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