My thanks to Ron Power's brilliant study of Cairo, Illinois, in his book Far From Home. Then there was Frederick Durenmatt's famous play, The Visit. I received masterful tutoring about small-town politics from the mayor of a town in New England who insisted on anonymity. (Readers of Off-Season will understand why.) The faculty and students associated with the English department of The Hotchkiss School were valuable critics of my early efforts, as were Bill Littlefield, Jeff Kisseloff, Julian Koenig, Alexis Lalli, and my son, Martin. I am especially grateful for the bold and perceptive editing of Richard Peterson, English Department, Southern Illinois University.