Obituary: Gerhard A. "Gary" Swenson Sr. - Class of 1947 - MADISON - Gerhard A. "Gary" Swenson Sr., age 85, passed away peacefully at his home, surrounded by his family on Friday, April 11, 2014. He was born on Dec. ...
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Average Pupil Doesn't Want to Live in the White House
By William C. Robbins
(State Journal Staff Writer)
In this presidential election year, the average Madison grade school pupil has little or no ambition of ever living in the White House.
The boys would rather be astronauts, sports stars, businessmen, marines, detectives, or doctors than be president of the United States.
The girls would rather be married to doctors, lawyers, jet pilots, businessmen, lion tamers, or businessmen than be the nation's first lady.
That was the definite answer given in a survey of fifth and sixth grade pupils at Lincoln School, 702 E. Gorham st. Evelyn Simonson, 303 Princeton ave., is school principal.
Of 13 boys questioned, all said they have ambitions other than being president. Of 23 girls, all said they prefer other roles than be the president's wife.
They had their reasons, too. They said there is too much responsibility and public attention involved.
"I would not like to be president because every five minutes you have problems and large arithmetic problems, too," Karel Vlasek, 301 N. Livingston st., said. Karel said he would like to be an astronaut and help explore outer space.
"It involves too many decisions, worries, and responsibilities. He would not be able to spend enough time with me and the kids," Peggy Williams, 503 E. Gorham st., said. She would prefer her future husband be a doctor, she said.
What do they want to be someday? Here are the answers the boys gave when asked to name their No. 1 job ambition: doctor 2, lawyer 2, businessman 2, astronaut 2, marine 1, veterinarian 1, reporter 1, television cowboy 1, and comedian 1.
Here are the answers the girls gave when asked what job they wanted for their future husbands: doctor 7, lawyer 3, businessman 3, scientist 2, athlete 1, jet pilot 1, lion tamer 1, zoo keeper 1, FBI agent 1, interpreter 1, horse trainer 1, and teacher 1.
When the 13 boys were asked directly if they wanted to be president some day, only one said "yes." He was Dick Sweet, 18 Sherman terrace, and his first choice was astronaut.
"I would like to take trips. I would also like to live in the White House," Dick explained.
When the 23 girls were asked directly if they wanted their husbands to be president, only four said "yes."
"I would be able to travel with him and help him make decisions and help the United State," Sandra Gasen, 2426 A Truax Field said.
Debby [sic] Hastings, 10 Sherman terrace said, "I would like him to be president so I could see him on TV and we could go on trips together. And live in the White House."
The pupils also had a chance to state preferences between being president and holding a number of other jobs. The boys said overwhelmingly they would rather play for the Milwaukee Braves than be chief executive. The vote was 10 to 1. They would also rather be a lawyer (8 to 1), detective (10 to 0), clergyman (7 to 4), and businessman (10 to 1).
The girls agreed. They said they would rather be married to a baseball player (20 to 3), lawyer (19 to 2), detective (17 to 6), or a businessman (19 to 4). The only reversal was president over clergyman (13 to 9).
The reasons the students are not interested in the presidency reveal their understanding of the responsibility of the position.
Mickey Toseff, 243 A Truax Field, television performer: "It is too hard. You have to talk all day. I don't like it. It is not exciting."
Work all the time
Steve Reynolds, 130 N. Blair st., lawyer: "I would not like to make speeches and go to meetings and take trips. I would rather stay close to my family."
Danny Walker, 124 N. Hancock st., doctor: "There are too many important decisions to make."
Steve Bruns, 5 Sherman terrace, doctor: "You have to work all the time and worry too much."
David Williams, 503 E. Gorham st., businessman: "It is a big job that I think is a bit too big a job."
Jacqueline Harrington, 414 Washburn, pl., lawyer or doctor: "I would not like him to be president because we would be too high and mighty and I wouldn't like that life."
Too Much Strain
Trudy Halla, 822 E. Gorham st., scientist: "Because I wouldn't want my children to grow up in politics. I'd like them to grow up in the country."
Patti Anne Notes, 741 E. Gorham st., teacher: "I'd have to live in the White House and go where the president goes—too much attention."
Mary Jo MacMillian, 126 S. Hancock st., anthropologist: "I would not like him to be president because of the dangers of assassinators and enemies he would make. He would have too much responsibility and there would, be too much physical and mental
strain on him."
Susan Brockett, 1026 Sherman ave., lawyer: "He would have no time for me. He might go away often. He might get to be a swell head."
Josie's [was] a longstanding neighborhood fixture and the last restaurant of any kind on the corner of Park and Regent streets, an area nicknamed Spaghetti Corners by Truax Field servicemen in the 1940s.
The building originally held Jimmie's (Puccio) Spaghetti House. It's neighbors were DiSalvo's Spaghetti House, Bunky's (Capadona), The Roman Inn (Ciulla), and Tiny's (Quartuccio) Lunch, according to Catherine Tripalin Murray's foreword in "A Taste of Memories from the Old Bush" cookbook.