— Hi. Excuse me. I’d like to return th—

— Oh. Sorry. I didn’t realize.

— Ha ha! Yes, good point, you really would think I’d notice a line like that, what with the X-ray vision and all. That’s a good one! So, uh, I hope you don’t mind me asking, but how long would you say the wait is?

— Ouch! Listen, is there any way I could maybe take a number, go away, and come back? It’s just that I’ve got a lot of stuff on my plate today. There’s a cat stuck in a tree three blocks from here … an orphanage on fire in Toronto … a drought in Nigeria … I don’t mean to sound like a jerk or anything—really. I’m just kind of slammed today.

— No, no, I understand. Rules are rules. I’ll just go wait over there. While the orphans burn.

(One hour and 45 minutes later.)

— Hey, hi. Me again. You may not remember, but we met around two hours ago. I was the superhero you told to wait? So listen: I got this DVD player, and it turns out that the frame-advance feature doesn’t work.

— No, my powers don’t include the ability to slow down a DVD. Why would that even be a superpower? It’s not like, thanks to your planet’s yellow sun, I suddenly have dominion over home appliances.

— Does it really matter why I want to use the frame-advance feature?

— I don’t think it would be any business of yours if I were, as you say, “sitting around the Fortress of Solitude frame-advancing through Halle Berry’s nude scenes.” Which I’m not.

— Look, sometimes I just like to use it to pick up details I missed, OK? Just drop it. What do I have to do to get my money back?

— Well, no, it was a gift, y’see, so I don’t—

— Really? A “gift receipt”? I’ve never heard of such a thing.

— Yeah, well, maybe when they came into vogue I was busy, I dunno, saving Metropolis from General Zod.

— No, I don’t want a medal, and I’m quite pleased with my chest. Also, I don’t appreciate your tone.

— There’s really no need to repeat what I just said back to me in a high-pitched girlie voice.

— Hey, c’mon, cut it out!

— Thank you. Now: Can I return this, or not?

— So let me get this straight: You sold a defective product, and now, because I don’t have a tiny slip of paper, I’m stuck with it? I have a friend at the Daily Planet who might be very interested in this story.

— No, my friend at the Planet doesn’t need to get out more. He’s actually quite charming and—

— What do you mean you’re going on break? We’re in the middle of a conversation! No! Wait! Don’t you dare pull that barrier down!

— Well, that’s odd. I—I can’t see through the barrier. My X-ray vision—it’s failing me. It seems my superpowers are no match for your awesome and complete indifference. I’m feeling weak. Must leave … store … and return home … Cable guy coming … between 2 and 6. Can’t miss appointment … Impossible … to reschedule.