What do Mr. Guareschi, President Johnson, and Mr. Kowalski all have in common in The Wednesday Wars by Gary Schmidt?

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Lori Steinbach eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Each chapter in The Wednesday Wars by Gary Schmidt covers a month of Holling Hoodhood's seventh-grade year. In April, three men in the novel all suddenly have something in common: they have all lost their jobs.

Mr. Guareschi is the principal at Holling's school, Camillo Junior High, and all of a sudden one day someone new has become the school principal. Probably this is because of the rat incident in which Sycorax and Caliban--along with all of their "nesting" items--come crashing down in front of visitors. One of these visitors. Mrs. Sidman, calmly takes the rats by their tails and carries them out of the classroom; no doubt because of that, she has been named the new principal. Mr. Guareschi has "received an administrative reassignment."

Also this month, President Johnson announces that he will not be running for President in the November election. Perhaps it is because he does not think he can defeat Richard Nixon, as Holling's father suggests, or perhaps he is afraid he will lose to Bobby Kennedy, as Holling's sister suggests. 

Either way, he's getting out because be doesn't want to lose, not because he cares about America's future [according to Heather Hoodhood].

Mr. Kowalski is a local architect in competition with Hoodhood and Associates, and a month or so ago he stole Mr. Hoodhood's plans for the new junior high school. One day his daughter, Meryl Lee Kowalski, comes to school and announces that her family will probably be moving. Obviously he can no longer find work here in town because of his dishonest actions (which Hoodhood no doubt made sure everyone heard about). He, like the other two men in this chapter of the novel, will soon be out of a job--or will at least have to change jobs.

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The Wednesday Wars

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