The sun was shining in the small town of Stick-in-the-Mud. In fact, the sun was shining everywhere except for the other half of the earth, where the moon was shining. Stick-in-the-Mud was a tiny town located in the Marshy Misty Moors. If you just squinted and blurred your eyes the tiniest bit, Stick-in-the-Mud would just look like a pile of moose droppings. Stick-in-the-Mud was famous for its industry in fenugreek. Stick-in-the-Mud was also famous for being a vegetarian town. It had stevia for sugar, gluten for meat, beans for jelly beans, potatoes for potato chips and others. Huh. It was a simple town out in the wilderness. That is, until the shooting star.

It happened on a Tuesday. Everybody in Stick-in-the-Mud was eating their lunch (which, by the way, was some fenugreek salad and gluten with heart of palm) when there was an explosion. KA-BOOM! Everybody was startled by the noise, particularly because the town was usually peaceful and quiet, not used to such loud sounds. Everybody rushed out to see what was going on. There, outside, a stone's throw from the melon and fenugreek field, in the common they called Lotion, was a smoking grey thing made of iron. It looked like a capsule. "Ouch", Little Mac Crow said. "What is it?" Asked Caroline, the village massager. "I don't know", Senor Fernando, the man who made noses sharper, replied. "I don't know too, but I ain't touchin' it." Homer, the town's fake Italian, said. "Mamma Mia!" Muttered Marco, the real Italian of the town. "It must be a shooting star", Gunther, the town's Russian whispered. "Si." Senor Fernando murmured. "Well, what are we going to do?" The town's German, Anton, asked. The townsfolk started whispering and muttering and murmuring and huddling. "It must be a gift from Allah!" The town's Indian, Abdul Muesli, said. "A gift from God, you mean." James Cork, the town's Irish man said. "A gift from Lord Vishnu, surely." Stick-in-the-Mud's other Indian, Omar, said. Soon the whole town was in an uproar in an argument about the 'shooting star'. They argued until it was 12:00 noon. Then the unthinkable happened. Just as the argument was about to escalate to a full-scale brawl, there was a sudden sound, like an elephant with constipation. Everybody stopped bickering and turned to look at the shooting star half-buried in Lotion. It had groaned and hissed. The shooting star slowly revealed a long black line through the middle of the capsule. With another groan and hiss, there was an explosion of steam. Everybody coughed and fell to their knees. "Look!" Caroline said, wheezing and pointing through the steam. Out of the foggy steam smog fog stuff, a tall figure emerged. It was obviously a gentleman. It wore an elegant outfit, a greatcoat and a formal suit underneath with a top hat and a golden-knobbed cane. He strode through the fog. Everybody oohed and aahed. A man from the big cities, obviously. He looked around haughtily. His eyes fell on the crowd kneeling to the ground. "Rise", he said in a voice haughtier than his gaze. "Stop kneeling to me, your liege lord, sons and daughters of mud. I have accidentally stumbled upon this town of dung, but since I am already here…" The people gasped as from behind his back he produced a plastic. "I suppose I will give you country people a taste of the big city food." Wordlessly he walked around. The people rose. He quietly distributed some weird food around. "What the heck is this?" Caroline asked, holding up a thing which looked like a long triangle. It had weird white and yellow stuff on it, and red and green and stuff that was not gluten. "That is pizza." The stranger said solemnly, turning to Caroline. "What the—weird beans!" James Cork said, holding up a jar of what looked like multicolored transparent beans. "Those are jelly beans." The stranger said. "What's this brown stuff?" Mac Crow held up a slab of smooth brown food divided into squares. "Chocolate." "This white stuff isn't stevia?" Senor Fernando asked, holding a jar full of white grains. "That's sugar." The stranger replied. Another white jar was held up. "This?" "That is salt." As the country people marveled at the new foods, the stranger slowly climbed into the 'shooting star'. Just as Mac Crow was about to taste the chocolate, there was another explosion and the soil around burst. The townspeople opened their eyes from the mist clearing and saw the shooting-star rapidly disappearing from view. "Hey, look—" Mac Crow stooped and picked up a card. It said: Huh.