Take as given that, in the real world, there is no place for super-powered vigilantes running around beating the hell out of criminals that they just happen to run into while rooftopping. There are a host of reasons why comic book style heroes aren't realistic.
So, with that, if one found one's self suddenly in possession of super powers, what could one do with them? How would they a) make daily life easier, and b) how could one use them to Get Rich Quick? How would being super change your employment prospects?
Each of these short articles will consider a specific super power.
Today's power: Teleportation.
While one of the weaker fight-crime powers, teleportation is great for "normal" life.
First of all, a teleporter doesn't have to commute. As someone who spends close to two hours a day getting to and from work, that would be miracle enough. Party hopping and being able to see folks over distance would be pretty great, too.
So, with that, even if you could only teleport yourself (and, hopefully, your clothes), you've already made your life better. The two most common variation points on comic book teleportation are distance and weight allowance. Nightcrawler can only handle short distances, and can't carry much weight. He still has to commute to the X-mansion, but he can at least get to the Blackbird in a couple hops without having to wait for the elevator to the hanger. Lila Cheney can transport herself and a sizable entourage over intergalactic distances. Magik can move herself and her team a fair distance, provided no one minds stopping in Limbo first.
To make a living with your teleporting, you've got a few choices. The simplest is comeptition for UPS - when you absolutely have to get it from point A to point B *right away* the teleporter is the way to go. Mass and distance effect what you can do here. If you're 'porting letters across town, you're not going to make as much as the guy who can shift a dozen shipping containers from Taiwan to Boston. Mass is especially key. If you can only transport small things, your business will have to specialize in very valuable small things - bags of diamonds from Russia to Washington or something like that.
"Something like that" brings us, of course, to the more dangerous ways to make money; to whit, illegal jobs. Becoming a smuggler is the logical extension of the courier job. Being able to move drugs, stolen goods or just skip around customs agents makes the teleporter valuable to the black market. If you can move people around, too, so much the better - grab the product, put it in a vault, then bring the buyer and seller there, and everyone gets cleared out without much risk of a double-cross, since no one knows where the product is.
Becoming a thief, while also easy for the teleporter, is significantly riskier, and likely with no better a payout. Just because no one can stop you getting into the bank vault or museum doesn't mean you won't leave evidence behind when you grab something. Plus the stolen goods still need to get fenced, so you still need to be hooked into organized crime. Even if you steal cash, there's a risk of the cops tracking the bills back to you.
There are, of course, the insane badass careers of assassin, spy, terrorist and counter-terrorist, but unless you happen to be into that sort of thing before you start teleporting, odds are you won't really get into it afterwards either. Plus, a CIA operative doesn't make as much money as the ones in the movies do.
I suppose you could also make a killing as a stage magician.
Comments? Complaints? Suggestions for another power to cover?