Reader Friday: Everyday Superpowers

Reader Friday: Everyday Superpowers

What’s one everyday superpower you have?
What’s one you wished you had?

I’ll go first: I can fold a king-size fitted sheet.
I wish I could judge the right size container for leftovers.

Repeat for one of your characters.



Terry Odell is an award-winning author of Mystery and Romantic Suspense, although she prefers to think of them all as “Mysteries with Relationships.”

54 thoughts on “Reader Friday: Everyday Superpowers

  1. I can spell any word, even if I’ve never seen it written down before.

    I wish I could talk to my cats and explain why it’s so important that they swallow the tablet, rather than spitting it back out of me, in a foamy mess.

    • Thanks, Nic. I’ve found that for my dog, I have to hide her allergy pill in a blob of peanut butter. Then I put a ‘decoy’ blob on one finger, the pill blob on the next finger, and a ‘reward’ blob on the third. She’s hesitant about the first, but once she has that in her mouth, she moves along. She’s the most cat-like dog on the planet, I think.

  2. This is a fun one, Terry. Your desires are modest. Unlike mine. That speaks well of you.

    My superpower: data pattern recognition.
    The one I wish I had: X-ray vision.

    Have a great weekend, Terry!

  3. Good morning, Terry. You’re making us bare our souls, as John discussed a couple days ago.

    I can always find a tool in my messy, disorganized shop.
    I wish I could find an interest in cleaning up my mess.

    For one of my characters, Bolt, in my middle-grade fantasy series:

    Bolt can transfer the contents of a whole book to his brain in a few seconds with his magic wand and his Wipi!(Quick) command.
    What his mother wishes he could do, is the dishes.

    Have a great weekend! (And the command for Measure!–for those leftovers– is Tepika!) You just need a magic wand.

    • The closest I come to that measuring wand is choosing a container, then putting it back and getting the next size down. Works some of the time. Growing up, there weren’t really containers for storage. Leftover stayed in the pot, or in a bowl with aluminum foil on top.

  4. My superpower: I remember people’s names.
    My superpower desire: I wish I never had to sleep and maintained energy.

    PS: I am a good judge of right-sized containers for leftovers, but I wish I could fold contour sheets into neat packages.

  5. Fun question, Terry!

    The everyday superpower I possess: I never forget a face.
    My everyday superpower I wish I possessed: A memory for quotes. I have a terrible memory for quotes, be it literature, movies, in real life etc. I have to work memorizing the quote.

    Bonus lame-but-not-lame superpower that I possess that everyone on the planet possesses: I can turn oxygen into carbon dioxide πŸ™‚

    Thanks for starting my day off on a fun note! Have a wonderful weekend.

    • I should add “remembering faces AND names” to my wish list. I’m terrible at it. I think I used up that skill when I was teaching junior high and had about 216 students’ names to learn each semester.

  6. Happy Friday, Terry, I’m amazed about your superpower. When my Mom used to tell me that I looked like an unmade bed, she was prophesying my ability to fold a fitted sheet of any size, among other things.

    My superpower is front end estimation. I can visualize how structures fit together in three dimensions and estimate quantitative dimensions pretty accurately.

  7. Thank you for this fun topic. I am great at grilling steaks (from blood rare and seared on the outside to well done). I cannot eat an ice cream cone without a lot getting all over my face and clothes. My character Libby can ‘see’ things about a person’s character from looking at their photograph, a skill she honed working in the media department at an ad agency. She has a hard time finding words to express/explain herself when she is under pressure.

    • Thanks for playing both parts of today’s game, Margaret. I generally order my ice cream in a cup, not a cone. And I empathize with your character’s inability to find the right words. Maybe that’s why I write. I have plenty of time to think about them and fix them later.

  8. Fun question, Terry.
    My superpower: I can speak to animals, wild or domesticated, in a way they understand. My brother has the same superpower.
    I wish I could translate their language into English like Dr. Doolittle. πŸ˜‰

    • I talk to the animals we meet on our walks, but as of yet, there’s no indication any of them have a clue what I’m saying. Our dog never ‘talks’ (unless it’s a bear), but she stands in the middle of the room, saying “Read my mind.”

    • Do you read their body language, their vocal noises, or mental images? I could do a bit of all three with my pets. Having a conversation with the cat about the possum stealing his food or my golden retriever telling me to turn on the air conditioner was weird but useful.

      • Same. It’s a combination of all three. There’s nothing I love more than staring into the eyes of an animal and listening to their soul speak. English would be helpful at times, though. LOL

    • I love the critters at my house. I hand-feed my tree frogs, my praying mantis, and our large German Shepherd (she is spoon-fed just cuz she likes it…)


  9. Neat way to start the weekend.

    I’ve been told I look very menacing. Comes in handy. I wish I could read faster, which I’m too meticulous.

    My character, Reid, has a lot of first responder skills. He would wish to have a clear head and be able to sleep without pills.

  10. My everyday superpower: I’m very organized. I make a list every morning of all the to-do tasks for the day.

    I wish I could learn to do everything on the list.

  11. My superpower. Keeping a journal. I painstakingly write down everything I do daily in a drawn out page that covers a calendar month. That include the movie I watch with the major characters’ names, the music I listen to, books and blog posts I read and the places I visit.

    I’d love to know what’s going on outside the walls of my house without looking through the window.

  12. I can flawlessly repeat any foreign words and phrases, any language, to the amazement of a native speaker.

    I can’t remember the pronunciation afterwards. Leading to the development of a complicated–and often hilarity-producing–private phonetic system.

    • I grew up hearing German. I took a year or two in college. Never really learned to speak it, but when I tried to communicate on a trip to Germany, apparently my accent was good enough that they rattled back answers in German. I became very good at saying “Sprechen Sie langsam, bitte.”

  13. This is fun, Terry.

    My superpower: The ability to judge character and intent within a minute or two of meeting someone. I call it my Spidey sense.

    I wish I could remember people’s names.

    In my Jonathan Grave series, Venice Alexander is a computer savant.

    I imagine she wishes Jonathan would take more time off.

    • I could have used your Spidey sense a lot more growing up, John. Even if I had it, it would probably have atrophied over the last decade where my remote location (which l LOVE) means I’ve met very few people.
      I can’t remember names. One of my former temp jobs was working for the Orlando Convention & Visitor’s Bureau, handling registration. There were dozens of us, and if I met a colleague in the grocery store, I’d be lucky to recognize them out of uniform, and no clue what their name was, since we wore name badges at work.
      I can feel for Venice.

  14. Fun, fun, fun, Terry!

    My superpower: I can remember movie lines, along with the character and movie title . . . and spit them out in conversation to fit the topic and moment. I get laughs all the time.

    A superpower I wish I had: understanding what the heck my grown kids are thinking when they do crazy stuff.

    I also can’t fold a fitted sheet worth a dang. But my superpower I have in that regard is: I. Don’t. Care. πŸ™‚

    Have a great weekend all, and remember: We will never forget.

    • Forgot the second half of the fun!

      My character, Annie, can enter pictures and interact with who and what is in the picture. She doesn’t necessarily like to do it because it scares her, but nevertheless . . .

    • I envy your memory. I can’t remember dialogue my own characters speak the moment it leaves my fingertips. About the best I can do with movies is “Snakes. Why did it have to be snakes?”
      And yes, we must never forget.

  15. Super Power: Sense of direction. If you dropped my father in a city he had never been in and told him where and when to meet, he would be there. It just came to him. I am about the same way.

    In college I studied flying. One of my classmates got lost going to an airport with a radio beacon on the end of the runway, along a major highway. She ended up being talked down to an Air Force base and then shocked the Air Force would not let her take off and come home.

    After college I worked for “Game Piece Pizza”. A good driver can draw a map of the delivery area. One drive got lost in the apartment complex they lived in.

    What I wish I could do, more patience. As is written someplace on a performance review, “I do not suffer fools lightly.” Oh well.

    • I get lost in elevators, Alan. Don’t ever tell me to go “east” or “west” or any other compass direction. I still don’t know which way the windows in my office face, and we’ve been in this house 11 years.

  16. I have psychic abilities that my late brother called stupid psychic pet tricks. It runs in the family. Most are utterly useless but amusing. Do I dream lottery numbers? No. Do I dream about an ad I’ve never seen before, then it’s in the magazine I pick up at the dentist’s office, the next day? Absolutely. It’s fun going through the day and, suddenly, I see something unusual and say, “That’s why I dreamed that.”

    I’d love the ability to get past my Depression-taught parents’ teachings on not spending money, even when I should. If I’d put in an order for a new iMac when my computer started doing weird crap, I’d not be currently sweating the life of this one. Like all computer companies, Apple has a 2-4 week waiting period for new computers.

    A good chunk of my novels have involved characters with psychic abilities so I just flipped a mental coin and came up with Justin from my OOP romance, TIME AFTER TIME. He wakes up from a coma, and his former reincarnation selves are running around in his head telling him that he needs to find the woman who has always been his true love. He finds her, and he and his other selves promptly screw everything up.

  17. Thanks for sharing, Marilynn (but you knew I’d say that, right?)
    Seems you’ve almost got a reversal of the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon.

  18. Is the following a super-power? I can eat peanut butter straight out of the jar, although a little bit of vino helps the stickiness go down. I’ve got a friend who’s pb-phobic because of a bad experience with it as a little child.

    Now I need a way to use this in a murder mystery–force-feed someone a spoon of pb and refuse them anything to drink? (No fair relying on peanut-allergy.)

    Super-power I wish I had: The ability to remember names and characters in novels. The latest Miss Fisher novel I read, _Queen of the Flowers_, caused me much trouble keeping the four flower maidens distinct (important for the plot). Lack of this super-power keeps me from reading Russian novels. I was reminded of this this a.m. by a YouTube video talking about _War and Peace_. (Sometimes I block on my own characters’ names.)

  19. One of my daughters shares your PB power. Me, although I’m not allergic, I simply don’t like peanut butter.
    My critique partners often have to ask “Who’s this character and where did he come from?”

  20. My superpower – I can tell when the weather’s about to turn and get us home or get the dogs in right before it pours even if it’s a clear blue sky beforehand.

    What I wish I had – it used to be flying but the skies are pretty crowded now so I’d rather be able to shoot flames from my fingertips.

    • Thanks, Cynthia. I’m a ‘look at the sky’ person, and the Hubster is a ‘check the radar’ person. I’m usually more accurate as to the weather right around out house.

  21. My superpower (actually belongs to my Unconscious) is planting things in the first third of my book that I don’t realize the MC needs until the last third.

    My superpower of choice would be knowing which agents to query.

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