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Vacuums in Hand, Future Housewives Defy Feminists

June 26, 1989|DAVE JOHNSON

Two Vassar College students who disagree with radical feminists' vocal opposition to traditional values have responded by forming a club called Future Housewives of America. Regina Peters and Jennifer Harriton, both 21, said they hope to deal with the rights and responsibilities of women who choose to stay home. They said they plan to seek official school recognition for the club through the Vassar Student Assn. this fall and have lined up a professor to speak on "the impact of Tupperware on U.S. Society." The "disgustingly sloppy" campus women's center was the last straw, the pair said, so they showed up one day toting vacuums and disinfectant. Harriton said the center "was a pigsty . . . . Our mottos are: 'Coming out of the closet--with a mop in your hand' and 'Together we stand, united by Lysol.' " Both founders of the 15-member club call themselves feminists and insist that their organization is not a hoax. They say that, in addition to Tupperware and a possible dating service, they are interested in serious issues, such as domestic violence and drug abuse. Psychology professor Anne Constantinople said women who value certain aspects of feminism but are put off by radicalism might welcome the club's view, but said its organizers may be spoofing themselves to some extent.

--Stockbridge, Mass., celebrated its 250th anniversary with a parade of residents who were models for paintings of small-town life by Norman Rockwell. One convertible carried former Police Chief William Obanhein, the "Officer Obie" in the song "Alice's Restaurant" by Arlo Guthrie. With Obanhein was retired Dr. Donald E. Campbell, who made house calls for more than 30 years and appears in a Rockwell work as the doctor who holds a hypodermic needle as a boy patient checks medical degrees on his wall.

--Two pieces of 18th-Century furniture from the estate of Josiah Bartlett, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, brought $180,000 at an auction in Kingston, N.H. Ruth Ready, Bartlett's great-great-great-great granddaughter, said: "Oh, my gosh!" as a representative of the state made the winning bid of $100,000 for a maple highboy. Antique dealer Wayne Pratt paid $80,000 for an apothecary chest that still bears Bartlett's handwritten labels. Also auctioned in a field next to the 1744 Bartlett homestead was an extensive collection of letters, papers, clothing and other items, including son Levi Bartlett's handwritten biography of Bartlett, who was also a signer of the Articles of Confederation and a governor of New Hampshire.

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