I have a superpower. Now, if I had a choice as to what superpower I would have, it wouldn’t be this one. My first choice would be the ability to fly. After that, I think maybe super-healing (because chopping vegetables while blind never ends well) or maybe immortality, because awesome. It wasn’t up to me, though, so what I ended up with was this: when I’m out running errands, I have the ability to go into a store and walk right up to the thing I’m looking for, even when I have no idea where it is and I can’t see it or anything around it. Useful, but no one’s going to make a movie out of that anytime soon. I don’t think. Unless I can figure out how to sparkle while I do it.
Edward Cullen by Joel Kuiper, licensed by CC
My superpower became apparent a while ago when I was out with a friend shopping for a garlic press. We were at Overpriced Behemoth Box Store (not the actual name, unless we’re being honest) in which literally thousands of items of varying degrees of usefulness were shelved, hung, and piled up farther than the eye, or my eye at least, could see. We resigned ourselves to a minimum twenty-minute session of squinting and swearing, girded our loins, and went once more unto the breach. I forded a nearby aisle, picked something up at random to see what it was, and yes: it was indeed a garlic press. Or should I say, it was the garlic press, because not only was it the thing I was looking for, it was the only one in the entire store. All this while my Totally Sighted Friend was searching fruitlessly right beside me. Hand to God, and I have a witness.
It’s gotten to the point that my Totally Sighted Friend will take me to the grocery store, tell me what she needs, and then follow me around until I find it. One day she needed potatoes, so I wandered into the produce aisle, picked up a kumquat, put down the kumquat because I’ve never been sure what a kumquat is, thought I might like some cheese, and on the way to the cheese stand nearly ran into the potatoes. Totally Sighted Friend seriously and with opportunism aforethought just leaned on the cart and watched me amble around until I stopped and went, “Hey! Potatoes!” Which were right next to the onions I remembered I needed when two of them fell into my shopping cart. They were specifically yellow onions, too, which was the kind I wanted. That’s really what makes it a super-power: it’s so freaking specific.Of course, with great power comes great responsibility. For instance, I have to be careful when I’m looking for something sharp or heavy that I don’t have anyone near me at the time lest they find themselves minus a finger or plus a concussion, because if I don’t immediately find whatever I’m looking for, it will launch itself at me, and not all coffee-makers have good aim. I also have to watch out that the things I’m looking for don’t spill themselves all over the floor beside me and trip some innocent bystander who didn’t realize who they were standing next to. As Super (Blind) Girl, it is my duty to minimize collateral damage in the fight of good against evil, and by good against evil I mean me against whatever idiot decided to reorganize the grocery store aisles I had so carefully memorized (side note to whoever did that: I hope that when you go home, your mother runs out from under the porch and bites you).
Yea, verily, the life of a superhero is fraught with peril. As I walk this lonely road, gentle readers, do not envy me, but follow at a safe distance, because there’s a decent chance I’ll accidentally find whatever it is you’re looking for. By the way, I also have the power to draw smiley faces on the insides of basketballs, but I’m afraid you’re going to have to take that one on faith. 🙂