When I finished reading Matilda I was so convinced that I too had telekinesis, I’d sit and stare at things for hours trying to make them move. My friend Zoey was also in on the action. Sometimes, the inanimate objects of our concentration would actually move — we both lived in old houses where a slammed door upstairs could mean a shift in the floorboards downstairs — and just a hint of a wiggle in whatever vase or pen we were staring at was enough to confirm that we most definitely had a superpower.
It must have been the same year (The Age of Adorable Delusions, perhaps?) that I also read A Wrinkle in Time. Even more so than Matilda, this book convinced me that I had the superior ability of time travel within me, if only I could master the alternate dimensions of the “tesseract.”
I-was-a-weird-kid-aside, everyone wishes they had a super power at some point in their life, don’t they? Sometimes I wish I had the ability to know exactly what someone thought about me, or instantly make myself excellent at any skill in the world. I wish I could speak every single language and run faster than anyone or anything. Flying would be fun, but shooting fire from my eyeballs would be awesome. Walking through walls or having night vision is sort of boring to me, but if I could get a little Doctor Doolittle action and talk to animals? That would be cool. Until the chirping birds outside my window started sounding like a gossipy cafeteria — then I’d be like, Can I get those fire-eyes back?
One of my friends said she’d like to have the ability to touch a book and instantly consume its material. Can you imagine walking down the aisle of a library, pressing your fingertip to anything (War & Peace, The Double Helix, Everybody Poops) and immediately know it by heart? You’d be UNSTOPPABLE at trivia nights.
The best thing about considering your imaginary super power is that the opportunities are endless, and where the same bookish friend noted most people’s choice of super power is often a self-indulgent one, it’s essentially common knowledge that you don’t get a super power without understanding that you’d have to use it for the benefit of society, right? (Except for the “bad guys,” and don’t the always loose, anyway?)
So if you could have any superpower in the world, tell us what it would be. And then, if you’re feeling the good vibes, tell us how you’d use it to help others, even if just to make someone smile. And finally, because this is The Man Repeller after all, tell us what your superhero alter-ego’s costume would look like.
All I know is mine will definitely involve a cape.
— Amelia Diamond