The race to the 'new moon' ended yesterday when Chinese astronaut Yao-Li confirmed to a press conference in Beijing that China had beaten the U.S. to the new moon.
A flurry of questions followed. Journalists were skeptical as there hadn't been a launch or even pronouncement of a launch. Moments later, a writer from China's branch of 'Redbook' figured out Yao-Li's joke.
The astronaut was censured heavily by the space program, but the episode, boggling the Chinese media, caused their eye to focus on Shenzou VII more closely. After examining pictures and corroborating the evidence, it was clear that Yao-Li was delirious.
"He looked very sleep deprived" said Jo-Tsang H'chen. "There were deep bags under his eyes and he laughed often and nervously."
The Chinese media was on the cusp of publishing their findings when representatives of their government showed up with video of Yao-Li and his team playing chinese checkers on the moon.
The wind was whipping the Chinese flag, and the rice fields spread far as the eye could see, but in the words, spoken in unison, of the entire Chinese media, "it was definitely the moon."