When You Realize Why You Shouldn’t Have Superpowers

So, I was at Meijer the other day. (WHAT? She NEVER goes to Meijer, especially not three times a week, sometimes twice a day.)


Yeah, it was a pretty average day for me. The only real oddity about it was that I went to the one on Carpenter and not Ann Arbor-Saline. I remember this only because of where the pens can be found in relation to E4, the Media corner of the store. I was there with the main intent to buy food, I think, but had allowed myself to wander into the office supplies section because fall creates a chasm in my soul that I want to fill with back to school supplies even though they won’t let me back in school.


I was really looking for these pens my roommate has. I didn’t ask her what brand or where she got them, but I thought there was a good chance Meijer might have them at the moment. Really, I want two more boxes of the BIC white tube pens. You know, the old school ones they stopped selling when they went to the frosted tube pens. The white tube pens work better and for longer, and quite frankly I might never forgive BIC for the atrocity they have committed.

All of these thoughts I’m having, plus “Can I excuse buying yet another pack of Sharpies?” while standing in the aisle. Two worker drones (red polos will hunt me until the day I die) came around the corner. They were obviously on break and looking at the other side of the aisle I was in, which contained movies.

Now, I’d never call myself ugly, but I’m not attractive either. I, sort of, sit on the fence. When I don’t pull myself together, I inspire reactions of, “that’s rough.” But also, when I do pull myself together, I get thumbs up. I blend into the background. I’m not a show stopper on either end, hideous or gorgeous. I’m 100% okay with this. So when the guys came around the corner, I paid them no mind because people don’t usually react to my presence. I’m relatively, and wonderfully, invisible.


But since they were like three feet away from me, I could hear their conversation. They didn’t say anything about me. Their discussion ignored me as a person, however, the manner in which they spoke let me know that I was they audience. Have you ever had that? Where you know people want you to hear what they were saying? Maybe I caught it because I shamefully do the same thing.

They were talking about Ant Man of all things, and sort of being nerdy guys. I felt like they wanted to geek out about it, and really like the movie, but because a female (not even me specifically, but a living, breathing female) was in their midst, they sort of put on haughtier personas than they might regularly have as if to be impressive.

It was so bizarre to be a part of this brief social incident. They belittled the character for only having strength when he shrinks. “What good is that?” And, well, we all sort of had those thoughts when we first heard about Ant Man being made into a movie. I know I did. Still, after seeing the movie, I really liked him. I thought he had good character. I think strategically transforming between human-size and ant-size is beautiful and occasionally necessary and not really as laughable as you first think. Plus, I love Paul Rudd. I love his brand of humor. Plus, I think he’s the only one who could have played Ant Man without the character seeming down right lame.

I wanted to turn around and explain this to the guys, but I was in shock as well. They thought I was the type of girl to love Thor because Chris Hemsworth is hot. Now. Chris Hemsworth is hot. So is everyone else in Marvel movies. Their movie stars. You aren’t going to find many in Hollywood who are genuinely ugly. Also, Hollywood does not have a record of choosing ugly actors/actresses to play superheroes. Have whatever opinion you want about that, but they don’t. But, still, I’m insulted that they didn’t think that I cared about character development or plot, or ideas outside of how the superhero looks. As if I sit around picking my favorite actors based on looks and not talent. As if I don’t like to get into the brain of the character him/herself and see what makes them tick, regardless of who plays them.

But also, whoa. I don’t know if I’ve been in that situation before, but this is the first time I really recognized it. How wonderfully fascinating to be able to pick a part a social interaction like that. I’m the Hannibal Lecter of picking apart social situations. I’m crazed, methodical, and receiving sadistic joy from over embellished half-truths I’ve convinced myself are real life. I also don’t pick apart a situation until I’m alone and then I replay it over and over again on a loop until the film gets warps and the image goes all warbly. That day however, I was one with the universe, I guess. God gave me a brief insight into his divine omniscience and not only did I know what was happening, I had insight into why it was happening.

Sometimes I want my superpower to be reading people’s minds because of my raging social anxiety and neurosis. The power would probably cripple me and destroy my psyche. Other times, I want my superpower to be reading people’s minds so I can just sit in there and figure out what they’re doing and why. I want to creep around and see what makes them tick. On a scale of one to ten, the power would probably send my ego from an eight straight to an eleven. And then it would probably destroy my psyche. I’m betting I’m not the hero of an epic fantasy where I receive great power and am capable of bearing it by natural humility and grace, or whatever it is that Bilbo and Harry have in spades. I’m Dumbledore. I’m too smart for my own good, and I will probably be the death of me.

STILL. The spiral downward in flames would be SO MAJESTIC and fun.



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