If you’d been driving through California’s dusty Sacramento Valley in the late 1940s, you might have seen a small boy gathering walnuts in a deserted field.
As your Packard or Studebaker whizzed past, you might have noticed that the boy was gathering English walnuts, not the more common black walnuts. And if you’d have pulled over to ask why he was doing that, the boy would have been able to give you a reason: English walnuts could fetch $5 per 100-pound sack, while black walnuts brought just $3 per 100-pound sack.
He knew why he did what he did.
If you’d driven through Santa Barbara a few months later, you might well have seen the same boy selling eggs door to door. If you’d asked him why he’d ...