So What’s Your Superpower?

Like most who do what I do, I started as a reader. The voracious sort, of anything I could get my hands on that had words on it. Fiction, non-fiction, cereal boxes, whatever. Comics were a big part of that.

Which brings me to “What’s Your Superpower?”

We’ve all seen that meme. “If you could have any superpower, what would it be?” Always a little tongue-in-cheek, but there’s a serious element to it because you can tell a lot about a person by what they desire. Once you eliminate the obvious and over-used (super strength, flying and such) it gets a lot more interesting. Things like “I want to time-travel at will” or “Solve any crossword in under ten seconds” are not unheard of. Anyone who wants “People to do what I say” probably needs counseling, or at least a safe distance. It’s a sort of mini-test for the state of your head.

Me, I’m torn between two. The first is that I’d like the power to understand and speak any language I hear, and read and write any language I see. Forget super-strength, I think this would be incredibly cool. Not especially heroic in the earth-saving sense, but certainly very useful. We’d finally know what the Phaistos Disk is talking about.

The second is dangerously close to the “People to do what I say” option above. I’ve even written a couple of pieces with this notion: I’d like the ability, for example when I’m hearing a politician speechifying or a preacher preaching, to simply say, “Tell the truth.”

And they would.

Now, I’m not talking about catching lies as such, though this would often do that. Just make them say what they really feel is true. Facts are facts, but the truth of facts is they are open to interpretation. Facts are what is, truth is what they mean. Facts are dispassionate; truth is personal. Does a person really mean what they say? Even when they’re spouting absolute nonsense? I figure we can sort out the nonsense on our own; that’s our job. Also doesn’t mean the person speaking isn’t a vile waste of oxygen, but at least we’ll know if they’re a sincere vile waste of oxygen.

It’s a good thing to know.

So what’s your superpower?

6 thoughts on “So What’s Your Superpower?

  1. PSA: I occasionally get posts here from Anonymous. I understand when people want to keep a low profile, but I can’t approve those posts without opening a floodgate. I ask for your understanding on this.

  2. My superpower I already have, I open my mouth to talk change feet a couple of time (even in writing) and I seem to be incredibly good at it……

    • I think someone might have used their own superpower of spell-mischecking on you; that, or I just don’t understand what you wrote (also possible). You open you mouth and change feet? I’m confused…

  3. Sounds good to me. The second reminds me of an Andre Norton novel, one of her “forerunner” series, where one of her characters had the ability to separate real and fake artifacts with a touch. Not the same degree, but a similar notion.

    • That does sound pretty Nortony. Darn, I thought that one was more original than it apparently is!

  4. Hmm, those are pretty good. How are these, in light of the current world situation? 1. The “King’s Touch” (enhanced). The ability to cure any disease in an afflicted person with a touch, and to confer the like talent on that person for a set period of time (say, a week), along with the knowledge they have that power. (But not who gave it to them. Anonymity, and a private life, are good things.) 2. Archaeological divination. The ability to “read,” again at a touch, the history of any artifact. This is a thing archaeologists try to do all the time, in the course of their work, but this power would have the advantage of accuracy.

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