Sadly, No Superpowers

By | Tuesday, August 04, 2009 1 comment
Yesterday's weather reports predicted a 50% chance of rain for today. I woke up to a massive thunderstorm that, even at an early hour was flooding some streets and knocking out the power to some areas.

Driving to work was a bit hazardous. The roads were not just slick, but almost washed out. Hydroplaning was common. The rain was coming down hard enough that you couldn't see very well at all. Stoplights weren't working. Not surprisingly, most everybody was driving slower than usual, and I was a little irked that I had only given myself enough time to get to work under normal conditions. I was going to be a tad late but, I figured, it was bad enough that everyone else was too.

I got off one highway and on to another. As I coming towards the end of the ramp, a thunderous explosion erupted from what seemed like right on top of me and everything outside the car went white. A second later, when I recovered my senses, I realized that the car wasn't working and I was merely coasting on whatever momentum I had.

I pulled off under a conveniently nearby overpass, thinking that perhaps all the rain got into the electrical system and caused a short-circuit. Nothing under the hood seemed singed, out of place, or otherwise abnormal. Scratching my head, I started to get back into the car when I noticed that my antenna was gone; it looked like it had been ripped out near the base. A second glance showed me that where the end of the antenna should have been was a charred, black hole about the size of a pencil eraser. I had been struck by lightning!

I stared at the hole for about five minutes before I could pick my jaw up off the ground. Even now, about 10 hours after the incident, I still can't quite wrap my head around it. I was driving on the highway and got struck by lightning!

Needless to say, the car's electrical system isn't doing so well. Maybe. The main computer was fried, and they can't even talk to the car without one. And, as you might guess by this message, I'm okay. My heart was racing a bit this morning, but only for the first hour or so.

But I'm not telling you all this so you can pass along whatever sympathies you might have. No, my experience this morning has led to comic book experimentation! And I am here to tell you first hand that getting struck by lightning does NOT grant you super speed, the ability to shoot electricity from your fingertips, or control over magnetic forces. Nor does it transform you into a muscular hero with the power of flight. (And, no, saying "Shazam" doesn't help either.)

So my tip for the day: don't go jumping into the paths of lightning bolts.

This has been a Public Service Announcement.
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This reminds of the Kitchen Sink mini-series "World's Worst Comics Awards", where they take a young boy from the audience and subject him to various catalysts such as radioactive waste, chemical spills, electricity... all in the hope that he'll develop some sort of superhuman ability.