I should admit from the outset that I was not well disposed toward the Mustard Museum of Mount Horeb, Wisconsin, when I set out to visit it last fall. I had just left my lover of three years and was heartbroken, in that state of emotional dishabille better suited to the glamorous desuetude of Paris than to the earnest vacuity of the American Midwest. I was, in short, very cranky.

EJ Levy‘s essays have appeared in many places, including Best American Essays 2005, The Puschart Prize XXXI Anthology, and The Touchstone Anthology of Contempoary Creative Nonfiction, as well as in The Missouri Review, Orion, Out, Utne Reader, Salmagundi, and The Nation. She is an assistant professor at the University of Missouri-Columbia.