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Young Writers Project: Life With a Peculiar Superpower



Age 15, Thetford
Monday, November 13, 2017

Young Writers Project is an independent nonprofit based in Burlington that engages middle and high school students from anywhere in the world to write, to express themselves with confidence and clarity, and to connect with authentic audiences. YWP facilitates publication of local writing every week in this newspaper; through YWP’s website, youngwritersproject.org, and monthly digital magazine, The Voice; before live audiences; and with other media partners, including vtdigger.org and vpr.net. YWP is supported by this newspaper and foundations, businesses and individuals who recognize the power and value of writing.

This week’s prompt: Power. You have developed an odd but somewhat useful superpower. Describe it.

Superfood

Imagine a world where you could eat anything, from cheeseburgers to chocolate lava cakes, without having to worry about how you look at the beach. Gorging on decadent food, never feeling the need to hold back, that’s the life.

If you have the appetite of a food-deprived lion as I do, this is the superpower for you: the ability to eat to your heart’s content and reap the benefits of doing so. Welcome to the stage, your new hummingbird-like metabolic rate. Say goodbye to restrictions and diets, and meet a world where your favorite foods such as pancakes, waffles, sausage, hash browns, cheeseburgers, French fries, potato chips, mac and cheese, chicken pot pie, pizza, lasagna, ice cream, cake, brownies and chocolate chip cookies are like eating salad or eggs.

Your favorite decadent foods make you glow and bask in your perfection. Eat a cheeseburger ... drop 10 pounds. Drink a chocolate milkshake ... instantly chiseled abs. Hork down a bag of BBQ chips ... bulging biceps. Peck away at a spinach salad ... regret. Eat some tofu ... off bursts the pants button. Choke down a hard-boiled egg ... the muffin top returns.

Super Farmer

I am sitting in the dirt on a hot July day. The sun is so hot that I can practically feel my skin burning. I am picking through 100 feet of almost microscopic carrots littered with hundreds of equally small pigweeds. I have been at this nearly an hour and I have made a depressing 30 feet of progress. All I want to do is go swimming.

It is days like this that I wish I had a superpower. When people imagine a superpower, they imagine becoming indestructible, able to vanquish all evil. I think of becoming a super farmer, someone who could weed an entire row of carrots, beets and potatoes just with the power of their mind. Someone who has never suffered the mind-numbing effects of pulling individual plants for hours on end might say, “who would ever want to do that?”

My answer would be, if I could weed our entire farm in 15 minutes then think about the number of acres I could keep meticulously weeded working only an hour a day. This power could also keep hundreds of families fed with good healthy food and that would help the world tremendously.

Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire

“Liar, liar, pants on fire.” That saying is almost too real to me. People lying just gets to me and irks me in the wrong way, almost like a lion gets to a doe. Liars feel fear and annoyance or fear of the truth, and I feel just general annoyance of the situation. Liars are running this world, and you can find them anywhere, whether it be in politics, school, relationships, media, or among random strangers.

People have asked me, “If you could have any superpower, what would it be?” Other people’s responses are often along the lines of “I’d read minds!” or “Invisibility!” Oh, or “... being able to fly like Superman, but without the kryptonite!”

What would I choose? Well, to be blunt, I would love to wake up one morning and be able to tell when people lie, snap my fingers and suddenly their pants would light on fire! Man, there would be tragedies everywhere though. So, maybe the fire would be “human safe,” but the clothes, no. The liars can say bye to those new jeans, then I’d make some cringy “burns” and puns. That’d probably teach them a lesson. Besides, I myself never lie. *Sizzle.*

Speedreader

I am a slow reader. Well, I should say was. Throughout school I always was the last person to finish a book or a short story in class. I always wanted to read but never had the time.

One day I began a book. Two minutes later I was done the book. I didn’t know what happened. Had I read that book? Was I just overtired and didn’t realize I just flipped through without reading anything? I got another book out and began that. Two minutes later I was done again. … A couple days went by and I was scrolling through Facebook. In less than five minutes I had read everything everyone had posted for the past month. … In 20 minutes I had read 10 books.

I soon began to realize this was not my imagination. I was amazed. I read everything in my house. Twice. I will never fail to be grateful for this power I have obtained.