Dear OutsiderLands Folks
I stumbled onto this site while researching for a book and I’m looking for anyone who went to high school in SF in the early to mid 1980s (esp. Lincoln or Washington) who is willing to share memories/stories/details of those times. I went to Lowell (class of ’87) and Presidio Middle School before that.
The reason for my ask is that I’m writing a novel that takes place in a fictional SF high school in 1984. My memory of Presidio is that much of it was fairly segregated into cliques that ran along racial lines and that claimed various gang or quasi-gang affiliations (WPODs, Cholos, “Fillmore Pimps,” WCs, etc.). Of course, this was a bunch of 11-13 year-olds so it was all just kids posturing and aspiring to be badass. I’m looking for memories of what high school was like around that time. (And yes I went to Lowell at that time but the dynamic was completely different from that of Presidio).
I’d love any stories, rumors, characters, memories, or details (dress, music, cliques, slang, weekend activities, clubs, drugs, etc.) especially those that stand out as unusual, unexpected, or specific to the place and time. And especially-especially if any of it involves gangs, WPODs/SSI, punk rock, the underground SF art scene of the time (e.g. the kind of stuff covered by RE/Search), as these things make up the milieu of the novel.
Important! - If you do share something here I will take it as a tacit permission to use it (in altered form, with no real names) in my novel, though if I do use any of it I will happily include you in the acknowledgements.
If you’re wondering “who the fuck is this dude and why should I share my memories with him?” that’s a fair question. My name is Augustus Rose, I was born in SF in 1969, lived in Bolinas until 10, the Outer Richmond until I went to college and I now live in Chicago where I teach in the Creative Writing Dept. at University of Chicago. I have one other novel out, called The Readymade Thief (Viking 2017), which is a very different story and has little to do with any of the above.