Social Battery

I was watching a TV show on Amazon about a teenage boy that had a father who was a superhero. His dad was from some planet that made him superpowered. When the boy was young, his father told him that someday he would inherit his superpowers and he would be super strong too.

I think the whole superpowered people thing is getting a little out of control. Since Marvel started doing Iron Man, almost every show on TV has some involved some sort of superpowered element. Add that with the entitlement that kids are expecting these days, and soon kids are just going to grow up expecting not only for their parents to allow them to live in their basements forever, but they are going to expect superpowers from their parents too. Thankfully, I’ve taught my kids disappointment, so they will not be getting any more or powers from me.

My kids have come to expect it.

I know a lot of kids are expecting the power of flight from the parents, but I think there is something in the water, because not only are less kids getting the power of flight, so are a lot of airlines. I hear more and more airlines are cancelling their flights, because “the weather”, or “mechanical troubles” or “there aren’t enough pilots” or something. I think we all know what is really happening though. It’s because less planes are inheriting the power of flight from their parents too.

Last year, I purchased a drone that I thought did a really good job in flying, and taking some pretty sick video of the sky or something. I wouldn’t put the footage in a National Geographic documentary, but I’m sure it would be able to make it into a crappy Hollywood blockbuster. I was excited to pull out the drone this spring and get some footage for a local commercial, but when I did, my drone didn’t immediately fly. Why wouldn’t my drone work immediately after six months of inactivity?

Did my drone just lose the will to fly? Did it lose its gift to fly from sitting on the shelf too long? Or was it just the fact that it was really low on batteries? Probably the first one.

Every one of us is given a social battery and when it runs out of power, we might appear to be alive and functional, but really you are just a human body that is physically alive. Socially, you are just car that is parked in a garage.

Some people, like my son, have an Energizer Bunny-like social battery that only needs sleep every once in a while and just gets recharged every night like a phone. In fact, most of the time, his battery is charging just by being around people. Other people like my daughter, have a much shorter social battery life and need two days for every 1 hour of socializing before they can be coaxed out into the wild again. Luckily, she has a room with a big recharger.

And then…there is me. Tragically, (or in my view, luckily), I was the only person ever to be born without a social battery. Everything else about me was normal, at least functionally. I had 20 fingers and 40 toes, and I was born with a BRF (Bitter Resting Face) just like all the other kids. But my parents were devastated when they realized that I no ability to care about other people. When the doctors pronounced that I had no social battery, my parents were predictably confused by the whole matter. But then the doctor explained that there was nothing they could do. I would never have the ability to tolerate people for the rest of my life.

Everyone does but me.

My mom looked at the doctor everything finally made sense. When I was in utero, whenever she tried to talk to me, I would retreat. Whenever people came near her, I would turn the other way. She could finally the weird things that were happening to her.

Just leave me be.

She realized that I wasn’t like her other kids. I didn’t whine and cry every when I wanted something to eat, or need to be changed. Because I didn’t want to be near people, I would do anything to avoid them. I would just ask my mom to slide my formula underneath the door and I would take care of it. I would change my own diapers, and take naps all the time. I knew if I cried they would come running, so I never did that. They knew I needed my blog time, so they got me a typewriter and saved all those pages for when computers were invented.

For all you people who think I didn’t like you because you have a bad personality, it’s not that (you still have a bad personality, I just avoid you because I have no tolerance for anyone). I still write on the blog to this day, but mostly I do to look busy, so you won’t bother me. And I don’t know if you know this, but I invented headphones just so I could appear like I don’t want to talk to you (which I don’t).

My superpower is avoidance.

Some people are still working on a way to fix social batteries, but they should concentrate on curing cancer or Covid, because I don’t want it. If they want to help me, invent a way for me to fly so I can spend time in the air where there are less people, or perhaps find me a safe full of money and diamonds like Scrooge McDuck so I can just sit in there and order things from Amazon.


Bitter Social Battery Ben

4 thoughts on “Social Battery

  1. I have a social battery, but it’s delicate and runs down quickly, like. Tesla battery. It gets charged from positive social encounters (of which I have very few in real life), and it’s drained super-quickly from negative social interactions (mean people, rudeness, people suddenly ghosting, etc). Luckily, I’ve figured out how to live a peaceful, content life with a dead social battery in a quiet isolation chamber.


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