Tom Cluster has been a longtime reader of this blog, having a special interest in it due to his association with Van Nuys. He grew up here, partially, from 1955-62, and lived on Columbus Avenue, north of Vanowen.
He sent along this 1957 photograph of his 5th Grade baseball team, most likely posing inside a courtyard of the newly constructed Valerio St. School. It was a five minute bike ride from his house. Most of the children, as strange as it seems today, walked or rode their bikes to school. Only a kid with a broken leg would be driven to school in a car.
“I’ve attached a picture of a group of boys in my elementary school in 1956 or 57. You’ll notice that a couple of them have the rolled up sleeves on their tee shirts. Bottom row, third from left seems perfect. The guy second from the right in that row has let it fall out a bit. It was quite the “tough guy” look. I remember when we first moved to Van Nuys, I was riding my bike in the new neighborhood and two guys stopped me. They were older, and they had that look. They asked me what I was doing there, and I breathed a sigh of relief when my explanation that we had just moved into the neighborhood satisfied them and they let me go.
I know that what completes that look is having a pack of cigarettes as part of the rolled up sleeve, but the version we had in elementary school was definitely without tobacco.”