Few felt it, but a seismic shift in American culture had begun. Grandfatherly Ike was President, friendly dairyman George Christopher was Mayor, stalwart Republicans both. Most white, middle-class San Franciscans (the majority then) saw these as comfortable times, and change as not terribly threatening.
Now over there in North Beach, we’re getting some weirdos: Kerouac, Ferlinghetti, what was that Herb Caen dubbed them? Oh, yeah, beatniks, like Sputnik, that Russian satellite. Those Russians are getting a little scary with their nuclear weapons, but the kids took those ‘duck and cover’ lessons in school, so I guess we’re ready.
Speaking of the kids, they might be going a little wild with that Elvis and those other rock-and-roll guys, but hey, the wife did the same with Sinatra when she was a kid. Meantime, we’ve got the best town in the world here, and to prove it, we’re getting a major league baseball team next year. Took ’em away from New York City. Seals Stadium’s not big enough, but it’ll only be for a couple of years, because we’re going to build the most modern stadium in the country out at Candlestick Point. With parking for 12,000 cars!
If Fox River IRM still has Muni’s PCC, they’re not listing it on their roster.
As a Redwood City boy I would spend a week each summer in the 1940s with my aunt who owned the “family home” at Maynard and Mission in the Excelsior. I well remember a Redlicks’s “17 Reasons Why” store on Mission east of Alemany. My aunt dragged me all over The City where I learned a lot. I rode the 12, 14 and 40 Market Street lines, plus the M Ocean of the Muni. Later, as an adult, I rode the N Judah car when I lived on Mt. Sutro. The 40 line ran from the Ferry Building out thru Daly City, behind San Bruno Mountain and went all the way to the S-P depot in San Mateo which is where my mother would put us on for the ride to the Excelsior. I remember how exciting lower Market was with the “roar of the four” and marveled at all the streetcars. I loved them and even fashioned a motorman’s controls out of a wooden box.
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