Looking back from our vantage point today, the most influential development of the year 1977 was probably the launch of the first Apple computer. Then again, the precursor to the GPS was also revved up that year by the US Department of Defense. And sadly, 1977 was also the year that America lost its most influential pop icon, Elvis, to an overdose.
Meanwhile, here in the Bay Area, the very first issue of Latitude 38 magazine hit the docks in ’77, and soon attracted a dedicated — almost cult-like — following of readers who considered the free, black-and-white monthly to be the ‘bible of the West Coast sailor.’ As evidence of its minimally funded entrepreneurial roots, the first few issues were literally laid out on the salon table of founder Richard Spindler’s Bounty II sailboat, which he and his then-wife Kathy McCarthy lived aboard in Sausalito.
With the arrival of Latitude‘s official 40-year anniversary next month, we’ve been kicking around a variety of ideas for special editorial content to include in the April 2017 40th Anniversary issue, and we’d greatly appreciate your input as we fine-tune our game plan.
So if you recall being particularly impressed or enlightened by our reporting on a particular sailor or subject, we’d love to hear your thoughts. Or, if you found some aspect of Latitude‘s (pre-PC) editorial to have been lame or inappropriate, we’d welcome such a critique also.
Putting out each issue with a small staff and limited resources has always been a heck of a lot of work, but one of the things that makes it worth the effort — probably the most gratifying to Latitude staffers — is when someone tells us that our stories, photos and insights have "kept the dream alive" for them, whether that dream was buying their first boat, heading out the Golden Gate to go cruising, or racing to Hawaii. So again, if we’ve kept a sailing dream alive for you, we’d love your input. (And, of course, medium-resolution photos that support your comments are always welcome also.)
More often than not we try to live in the moment rather than focusing on the past. But looking ahead to our April anniversary issue we’re already having fun doing some well-earned reminiscing. So again, we invite you to chime in also.