KYA – San Francisco – Bwana Johnny – March 31, 1971 – Rob Frankel Collection –
It’s March 1971. You have done what most of your friends have done – go away to college. Your big adventure – you don’t live at home anymore – nobody tells you what to do, where to go, what to eat or what to wear. Freedom. And as long as your money holds out, you’ll be fine. You do have to get a job though. By rough estimates you have enough to keep you going for three months. But you don’t think about that – not now anyway. You have friends and there’s talk of moving into a house with a bunch of them and splitting the rent. You have discovered a taste for beer. So have your friends.
You miss L.A. though – you miss the hot days. It’s cold in San Francisco; cold most of the time, and it rains a lot. Never rains that much in L.A. – but the air’s cleaner in the Bay area. It’s hardly ever smoggy.
You were missing L.A. – but then in February the earthquake hit and everybody was freaking out. And that’s when you stopped missing L.A. – you saw the news on TV. The collapsed freeway overpass – all the crunched buildings. And you remembered you were accepted to Valley State in Northridge and you decided to go to San Francisco State instead. You were breathing a sigh of relief. So when you heard in March that there was ANOTHER earthquake in L.A. – you felt moderately smug about making the right decision – dodged another bullet. And the rain doesn’t seem to bother you that much anymore.
For a reminder of life in the Bay Area in 1971, here’s a half-hour of Bwana Johnny from KYA in San Francisco on March 31, 1971. Toward the end you’ll hear a newscast with a report of the latest earthquake in L.A.
Life on the West Coast.