California is a state located on the West Coast of the United States. It is by far the most populous U.S. state, and the third most extensive (after Alaska and Texas). It is home to the nation's second- and sixth-largest census statistical areas (Los Angeles Metropolitan Area and San Francisco Bay Area), and eight of the nation's fifty most populated cities (Los Angeles, San Diego, San Jose, San Francisco, Fresno, Sacramento, Long Beach and Oakland). The capital city is Sacramento.
- California's a wonderful place to live — if you happen to be an orange.
- Fred Allen; reported in Steven D. Price, 1001 Greatest Things Ever Said About California (2007), p. viii.
- California's like an artificial limb the rest of the country doesn't really need. You can quote me.
- If everybody had an ocean across the U.S.A.,
Then everybody'd be surfin' like Californ-I-A.
- It's a scientific fact that if you stay in California you lose one point of your IQ every year.
- Truman Capote; reported in Steven D. Price, 1001 Greatest Things Ever Said About California (2007), p. viii.
- Whatever starts in California unfortunately has a tendancy to spread.
- Attributed to Jimmy Carter in a 1977 cabinet meeting; reported in Steven D. Price, 1001 Greatest Things Ever Said About California (2007), p. viii.
- California is a queer place — in a way, it has turned its back on the world, and looks into the void Pacific. It is absolutely selfish, very empty, but not false, and at least, not full of false effort.
- D. H. Lawrence, letter (September 24, 1923); published in The Letters of D. H. Lawrence, James T. Boulton, E. Mansfield, and W. Roberts (1987), vol. 4.
- As one went to Europe to see the living past, so one must visit southern California to observe the future.
- Alison Lurie, The Nowhere City (1992).
- When I came to California, it was the mecca of the world. Every young person on the planet wanted to be here. It was the heart of the hippie activity, and it was our culture, our generation, expressing itself at its most festive, so it was a real magnet for the young people … with the love-ins and so on.
- Joni Mitchell, on coming to California in 1969, as quoted in "Joni on Point" in The Los Angeles Times (7 June 2009).
- What was the use of my having come from Oakland it was not natural to have come from there yes write about it if I like or anything if I like but not there, there is no there there.
- Gertrude Stein, Everybody's Autobiography (1937, reprinted 1971), p. 289.
- The Senator says the territory of California is three times greater than the average extent of the new States of the Union. Well, Sir, suppose it is. We all know that it has more than three times as many mountains, inaccessible and rocky hills, and sandy wastes, as are possessed by any State of the Union. But how much is there of useful land? how much that may be made to contribute to the support of man and of society? These ought to be the questions. Well, with respect to that, I am sure that everybody has become satisfied that, although California may have a very great sea-board, and a large city or two, yet that the agricultural products of the whole surface now are not, and never will be, equal to one half part of those of the State of Illinois; no, nor yet a fourth, or perhaps a tenth part.
- Daniel Webster, remarks in the Senate on admitting California into the Union (June 27, 1850); reported in The Writings and Speeches of Daniel Webster (1903), vol. 10, p. 130.