For those of you not born and raised in Southern California a bit of explanation is needed. A Valley Boy or Valley Girl is someone from the San Fernando Valley Section of Los Angeles. Valley Boys and Girls have a particular way of speaking, thinking and acting. Got to be hip, very cool and talk with a rather strange accent. Toadily Rad is one example from the old days. Also saying “Like” 10 times in a sentence began in the Valley.
When my parents moved from the seaside city of Long Beach out to the “Valley” in 1950 it was the fastest growing place in the entire United States. Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, Roy Rogers, Gail Storm (My Little Margie), Liberace, Andy Devine, (Jingles) William Boyd (Hopalong Cassidy) Tex Ritter, Gene Autry, Hugh O’Brien (Wyatt Earp) were just a few of the movie and TV Stars that called the San Fernando Valley their home. Not to mention the author of the book “Tarzan” (Edgar Rice Burroughs) who got a neighborhood in the Valley (Tarzana) named after his famous jungle man.
Van Nuys Blvd was the prototype for “cruising” and car clubs all over America. This iconic street runs right through the middle of the Valley and was THE place to show off your “ride”, do a little street racing (until the LAPD showed up) and get a shake and a Big Boy hamburger at Bob’s Big Boy Drive in on the Boulevard.
I grew up in this wonderful place, cruising, dating, laughing and loving. I went to Van Nuys High School, just two blocks from the famous “Boulevard” . Went to college at what was then San Fernando Valley State College (now Cal-State U Northridge). The movie “American Graffiti” was about the Valley and this era.
OK, what is the point of this walk down memory lane? There is no deep message, no spiritual truth that will jump out at you in this post. I had a very good childhood; with the exception of a Southern Drama Queen Mother and an Armenian Long Suffering Father but they were great, in spite of it all. Dad did the parenting and Mom was the teacher, law giver and disciplinarian.
My childhood forged in my character an affinity for strong capable women like my dear wife Susan, the love of my life.
What did I learn from my childhood and teen journey through the 50’s and 60’s in the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles?
I was damn fortunate to be born in post war Southern California where all things were deemed not only possible but routine. LA was the center of the world and there was nothing that could not be done or achieved.
I had slightly unusual but loving parents who prepared me well for the life I was to lead.
I was raised a Religious Scientist (Los Angeles was the center of Religious Science and the Home Office of the denomination) which gave me an understanding that God provides the innate qualities of life and we create our life experience through wise use of the Law of Mind Action: (as a person thinks, so they are).
That nothing ever really happens to you, you happen to it. You are the motive force, the driving wheel of your life. What you think is creative. What you say has tremendous power and what you do or fail to do changes your life in ways you cannot fully fathom. It’s all up to you, but a power much, much greater than you or I is always open, always available for help, inspiration, comfort and strength. That is the God within which is the Most High God.
And So It Is!
Rev. Dore’ Jacques Patlian, Sarasota, Florida