Monday, January 14, 2008

The Chronicle Cites Back


Challenging the Los Angeles Times monopoly on McWilliams citations, Caille Millner of the San Francisco Chronicle went to the well today in her piece on There Will Be Blood:

"California is like the mechanism of the rachet wheel and pawl," wrote Carey McWilliams in his wonderful book, "California: The Great Exception." "A burst of energy, another explosion, sends the wheel spinning forward and then it locks until the next burst of energy sends it spinning again. When Californians speak of oil as "black gold" and lettuce as "green gold," the reference to gold is more than a figure of speech."

McWilliams noticed this pattern back in 1949 - and he noticed its impact, too. "It goes without saying that the process is searing and disruptive, making for disequilibrium and a noticeable lack of stability, producing many strange institutional maladjustments and social derangements," he wrote.

Note the brim on Daniel Day-Lewis's hat. Inquiring minds want to know: Is it pencil-rolled?

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