Americana: Rock of Ages

It has been said, by a malicious Polish wit, that it takes five Southern Californians to unscrew a light bulb, four of whom share the experience. Thus it was on the hills above Malibu Beach, where the experience shared over the past three weeks was a construction crew's herculean effort to remove a 116-ton boulder that had perched over a row of fancy houses lining the Pacific Coast Highway.

Film Producer Robert Radnitz, who lives in one of the threatened houses, first spotted the boulder. Partially dislodged by a landslide, it had come to...

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