The other evening, my oldest challenged his brother and me to come up with super heroes that had three super powers or less. I realize that this may sound a little odd, but ever since our murder walk, these sorts of challenges have been a regular occurrence.
For my hero’s powers, I picked super good looking (which got me an eye roll), super healing (which earned knowing nods and murmurs of approval) and the ability to create illusions (which was surprising enough to get more approval).
The kids came up with their heroes, far more powerful than mine, but had a tough time sticking with the three power limit. So the challenge changed to “super teams.”
My wife drifted in at this point and sat down. We asked her for a hero, and she described someone who could fly, was super fast, and could heal other people.
“My super team,” I said, “is just two people. It’s my hero, who I still can’t think of a name for, and his sister. Since she’s related to the hero, she has super-healing also.”
“And super good looks,” my oldest son interrupted. “Yeah, yeah.”
“No,” I said, just to be contrary. “As good looking as he is, she’s that ugly: super ugly, so ugly that people give a little yell of terror when they see her.” I gave a little eep to demonstrate. “And her third power is that she’s really strong. She’s the fighter of the two, super-tough, and – ”
“Wait,” he interrupted again. “Mom’s not that strong. She wouldn’t be the fighter.”
There was a pause as my wife and I digested that.
“Mom?” she said, laughing. “I’m super-ugly? So ugly that people go ‘eep’ when they see me?”
“What?” His face flushed bright red. “No! No! I was just saying that if Dad was his hero,”
“I’m not,” I said. “When I dream these things up, I’m not pretending they’re me. Even if I did, your mom and I aren’t brother and sister.” I smiled. “It is cool that you think I’m super good looking, though.”
“No!” he shouted. “I know they’re not you. I didn’t. . .” He trailed off, too embarrassed and confused to continue.
“Super ugly?” My wife shook her head in mock dismay.
“Hey,” I beamed. “At least you married the best looking guy in the world.”
“I meant your hero,” my son blurted. “Not you, your hero.” He nodded. “That’s what I meant.”
I have to admit, it was a pretty good save, and probably true, too.
But it won’t help him. He’s going to be paying for this one for a long, long time.