Hanging Out: 1972








The Wild Bunch Blog has some interesting photos (supplied courtesy of Richard McCloskey) of the cars, guys and girls who cruised along Van Nuys Boulevard some 41 summers ago.

These young people and their gas guzzling muscle cars were enjoying their last summer of cheaper oil.

In 1973, after the Arab-Israeli War, OPEC got together and helped create the first “Energy Crisis”… and a gallon of gas went from 33 cents a gallon to as high as 60 cents.

1972 was also the summer of “American Graffiti”, a film which nostalgically looked back 10 years earlier to 1962, a time of greasers, cars, hanging out, and being young.

Now we look at these photos, themselves archival relics, and wonder how Van Nuys was ever so young, so thin and so very white.

3 thoughts on “Hanging Out: 1972

  1. for those curious, there is even a movie called VAN NUYS BLVD, a 1970’s drive in type movie, complete with thePLAYMATE OF THE YEAR, a Van Nuys native named Cyndi Wood. And the screenwriter knew enough to borrow a phrase, having the kids challenge each other to “Pull a Raymer”–to drag down the long, deserted Raymer St, the street just south of the Metrolink tracks.


  2. Hmmm … Although I graduated from Van Nuys High in 1971 I didn’t have a car and never cruised Van Nuys Blvd. My class was majority white, but with a visible share of Latinos and other white ethnics (e.g. Italian ancestry). A friend had a very cool 1955 Thunderbird. The campus was finally opened that year and we walked to McDonalds on Van Nuys near Sherman Way for lunch sometimes. Pretty mundane, really.


  3. This also reminds me of the car rallies that took place at Balboa Park on Saturday nights. My friend and I went to cruise VN Blvd. one night (told her parents we were going to play tennis) and got pulled over by the LAPD for a tail-light that was out. How were we going to explain that to her parents?


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