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Chicago Tribune's Julia Keller Wins Pulitzer

By Sam Bakken in News on Apr 5, 2005 5:29AM

Joseph Pulitzer, not Julia KellerYesterday, Columbia University announced recipients of the 89th annual Pulitzer Prize. The Tribune's Julia Keller won in feature writing for a three-part series on a devastating tornado and its aftermath in Utica. The series ran in December 2004.

Peep the lede:

Ten seconds. Count it: One. Two. Three. Four. Five. Six. Seven. Eight. Nine. Ten. Ten seconds was roughly how long it lasted. Nobody had a stopwatch, nothing can be proven definitively, but that's the consensus. The tornado that swooped through Utica at 6:09 p.m. April 20 took some 10 seconds to do what it did. Ten seconds is barely a flicker. It's a long, deep breath. It's no time at all. It's an eternity.

We love it. It reminds us of the "When I'm Sixty-Four" scene in "Yellow Submarine" that mentions, "sixty-four years is 33,661,440 minutes and one minute is a long time........" and proceeds to animate the digits 1 through 64 in succession. A minute is indeed a long time. Especially when in a sixth of it most of a downtown can be destroyed and eight people can be killed.

We missed it the first time around, but went back last night and read the whole thing. We know you don't give any credence to the Pulitzer Board's opinion so take our word for it, Keller's rendering of the whole thing really is masterful. We could list off our favorite lines, but that would ruin it for you.

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