I sometimes daydream about having superpowers. We all do. I’ve discussed it with friends, and I am surprised at how varied our dreams are.
One friend wants to be flat as a pancake, so she can slip under doors. Another wants to transform into any of a variety of lawn ornaments, so he can spy on people.
I wanted to be able to see out my fingertips.
It would be easier to peek around corners and find lost things. It could help or hurt romance, depending on how you—ahem—look at it, but as with kissing, one can always close one’s eyes. I gave up on the idea, remembering that I like to juggle. Just the thought of what juggling would look like from my hands’ point of view made me nauseous.
The Fantastic Four, a Saturday morning cartoon from my youth, was just remade as a movie. I was amazed that they didn’t upgrade the goofy superpowers of the cast, which even as a kid I thought were the dumbest ever. Of course we’ve all dreamed of turning invisible. But who dreams of being stretchy? (I notice his clothes have the same superpower, which is a relief.) The Thing can turn himself into a pile of rocks. And Johnny Torch can zoom around while setting himself afire—a talent which had already been attempted to ill effect by Richard Pryor.
Last night I discovered I do indeed have a magic power after all: The Incredible Magnetic Shin. Last week I thought it was a feat of long odds when a softball thrown from halfway across the field ducked right around my big fat mitt but was stopped with a slam by my shin, which is as skinny and hard as the handle of a ball bat. You couldn’t hit that stick of a target from five feet away if you tried, but it happened again last night: past my glove, into my shin, right on the same spot. I thought, wait a minute…
I don’t know if it only works for softballs or if I can draw all manner of thrown sports equipment. As I think back on my past I realize I’ve attracted both wood and metal coffee tables, even in the dark. How I’ll exercise this gift depends on the limits of what I can attract, but so far you can rest assured that if you are attacked by my notorious nemesis, the sinister Simon Slowpitch, or his evil sidekick Boris Badbounce, I’ll show up at the last second and offer you my protectshin.
Maybe I’ll attract imposters, like Shin Feign.
[Okay, I’m trying too hard.]
I suppose I’ll need a Super Name. I’m leaning towards Jimmy The Shin. I’m a little nervous about costuming—I had to wear yellow tights in a British play once, and the costumer said if I only had a feather boa I could be Big Bird. I was offended that she didn’t add that I would also need a bigger nose.