The superheroes and supervillains of comic book fame usually have some ability that defines them – superstrength, the ability to fly, invisibility, superstretchiness, whatever.
The characters with these powers are the stuff of comic book legend and blockbuster movies.
But what if there was a tier of superpowers below that, not enough to save the world from evil but enough to save us from common nuisances? What if you could be one of these situational superheroes? Such as …
Capt. Recovery: Can locate – or at least know what happened to – lost household objects, such as the TV remote, keys or the matches for the two-dozen single socks left behind after doing laundry.
The Freshie: Always have fresh breath. Garlic, red onions, coffee, a Cuban cigar – no matter what goes into your mouth, your breath is as pleasant as a sunny spring afternoon.
Cash Crusader: Always have coins and bills on you. Not a lot of it – $100 or so, like your grandpa always used to have. When someone in distress needs a quarter or $35 for the babysitter, they only need to summon you.
The Green Lighter: The power to always make it through the intersection before the light changes, even on Randall Road. Yellow is your nemesis.
The Husher: A few calm words, and babies stop crying. A knowing look, and toddlers stop throwing tantrums. A pat on the back, and teens stop sulking. A savior to families and air travelers everywhere.
Super Shopper: Spare friends from buyer’s remorse by knowing how to get the most reasonable price on everything.
The Mannequin: A breeze to shop for because they have the exact body shape that fits off-the-rack sized pants, shirts, shoes and other clothing. Looks good on you though.
Movie Mind: Who’s that familiar-looking actor? The Movie Mind knows. They also can name other appearances with which people are familiar. “Oh yeah! Thanks Movie Mind,” say the grateful citizens.
Maybe you have some people with these kind of situational abilities in your life now. If so, be grateful. They can’t save the world from supervillains, but they still can be tremendously useful under the right circumstances.
And that counts for something.
• Eric Olson is editor of the Daily Chronicle. Reach him at 815-756-4841 ext. 2257, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow him on Twitter @DC_Editor.