>Mustard's Last Stand is (was?) a hot dog joint outside the gates of Northwestern's football stadium that was once called one thing and is now another, much to the consternation of the family that donated jillions of dollars years ago to build it and assumed that it would always be named after them. Except that it needed to be renovated and another family donated jillions of dollars and got the stadium renamed after themselves, so the lesson learned here is that if you ever donate oodles of money to memorialize yourself at a university, make sure you stipulate that a condition of the donation is that whatever building you are underwriting is named after you as long as it substantially stands.

Sorry, I digress. My point is not about donor relations. It is about mustard's last stand. While I was in the airport waiting for my flight back to New York, I bought a turkey sandwich. Instead of putting mustard on the sandwich, the sandwich maker threw three packets in the Styrofoam container along with a juicy pickle. I settled in at a counter in the middle of the food court to chow down.

When I tried to open the first packet of mustard, it resisted my assault on its sovereignty. After a few attempts, I should have moved onto to another packet, but I was determined to show the mustard who was boss. Eventually I succeeded in tearing a tiny hole in the corner.

Eyeing it with triumph, I silently messaged it. "Ha mustard! Prepare to be spread!"

"Fuck you!" it yelled back to my head. "Just try me."

It's not like I didn't know this was a Pyrrhic victory, as the tiny hole just waited to explode in a mustard geyser under the pressure of my finger tips. Still, I pushed on. Mustard spewed out in gusts. Some went on to the Styrofoam, a small glop hit the pickle, and two sprays of bright yellow splattered on my shirt. No mustard would up on the bread. I continued my front until a stray stream of mustard nearly hit an innocent victim as he walked by the counter area.

"Good-bye, imperialist swine!" the mustard packet gloated as I cast it aside and went for a new one, which I conquered immediately.

The pilfered mustard treasure from my second battle improved the sandwich dramatically, but I bore the marks of defeat as I boarded my flight smeared with mustard. Just as one must be careful when forking over cash to build a football stadium in your name, it is no less important to understand what you get into when you begin a war with a determined mustard.

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