[Director P. T.] Anderson concedes that he’s puzzled by the phenomenon — particularly because the lines came straight from a transcript he found of the 1924 congressional hearings over the Teapot Dome scandal, in which Sen. Albert Fall was convicted of accepting bribes for oil-drilling rights to public lands in Wyoming and California.
In explaining oil drainage, Fall’s “way of describing it was to say ‘Sir, if you have a milkshake and I have a milkshake and my straw reaches across the room, I’ll end up drinking your milkshake,’ ” Anderson says. “I just took this insane concept and used it.”
By the way, it’s now kind of painfully obvious this milkshake thing has gone from inside joke to appallingly mainstream, and really is no longer cool. We need to find a more obscure line from an even indier movie. [Honest to blog. —Ed.]