A long time ago, in a galaxy really close was a man.
He was not your average man.
He could talk to a plant, and the plant would spring to life.
He could talk a beater Ford pickup truck into becoming a Ferrari.
He could talk a mushroom into believing it was a tree.
And he could talk a tree into believing it was a mushroom.
One day, he encountered a dead alien who had crash landed in his backyard.
He had a big backyard.
Or it was a little alien.
Sometimes his stories are hard to figure out which is which.
Now people from far and wide came to see this dead alien.
He dressed the alien up and propped it up on a folding chair on the side of the road, hoping people would give them money for beer.
He was a thirsty dead alien, that was for sure.
Someone took a picture of it and put it on their Facebook page.
“Jed,” they would ask, “why don’t you talk this alien back to life?”
He looked at them with a weird look.
“But he is alive,” he protested, “He talks to me all the time”
“What’s his name then?” they would ask.
Jed didn’t understand the alien’s name when he told it to him.. .
The people knew Jed was gifted.
But with this, they thought Jed was hallucinating.
In fact, they thought he was on drugs.
The people soon got bored of the dead alien.
And Jed still didn’t have enough money for beer.
So one day, Jed decided to put his dead alien in his Cadillac.
Or maybe the dead alien told him to.
The result was still the same either way.
With Jed and his dead alien in his convertible pink Cadillac, steer horns mounted on the front, he started driving from Texas to California.
After all, the dead alien wanted to be in the movies.
About 50 miles down the road, there was a roadblock.
The police were working with the FBI to stop dead aliens from migrating across country.
Jed’s pink Cadillac flew over the roadblock as if it wasn’t even there.
Some wonder if Jed even knew there was a roadblock at all.
But Jed got disoriented.
And didn’t know his geography.
After all, he had never been out of his home city.
Let alone Texas.
He asked the dead alien which direction to go.
But the two were confused.
Or maybe they were one and the same man, who was suffering from a mental disorder.
What kind of story would we have if we simply labeled him as mentally disordered and then ignored his adventure?
That generally makes for really boring stories of doctors and money and drugs and death and zombies and borg and stuff..
Pretty boring, right?
In any case, the dead alien pointed out a dirt road and what looked like a cave leading to it off to the side of the road.
But they needed beer.
So Jed drove up the highway a little bit and saw a 7 Eleven.
He showed the dead alien to the clerk.
The clerk exclaimed “That thar is a dead alien!”
The clerk then gave Jed an 8 pack of Guinness.
It never did sell well in Texas, the clerk told Jed.
Plus he liked the dead alien.
He gave the dead alien a cowboy hat to fit in better.
When Jed got to the car, the dead alien pointed under his seat.
(With his mind, of course)
And unbeknownst to Jed, the dead alien had stolen a fifth of Jack Daniels.
up the dirt road they went.
Like a mirage in a desert.
Was a cave.
Jed said to the dead alien: “How about you and I get drunk here, and we continue this tomorrow, and in the meantime you figure out where California is?”
The dead alien agree with Jed.
From there, Jed parked his Cadillac, Bessie as he called her, and then carried the Guinness, Jack Daniels, and the dead alien to the cave.
That night Jed swore he saw a starship outside the cave.
But then again it was probably swamp gas.
Or a weather balloon.
Thank you, Alan Dean Foster, for your repeated inspiration…