PHILADELPHIA—A dialogue between a teenager and acne, based off of Benjamin Franklin’s “Dialogue Between Franklin and the Gout.”
Midnight, June 17, 2012.
Teenager: Eh! Oh! Eh! Why, a complexion so vile, do I wear upon my features for the whole world to see? Especially mine one and only Prom date on the morrow!
Acne: For many a reason do I inhabit your friendly faÃ§ade. And I fear you are partly to blame for my bounty upon your brow.
Teenager: Silence yourself Sir Acne. Have not you inflicted enough pain upon my pride not to mention my afflicted chin?
Acne: My dear child, calm yourself! It was not I who compelled you to devour those chocolates and forget to bathe your face once nighttime fell!
Teenager: Why should I deprive myself the right to indulge on occasion? Sweets are a sole comfort to me, they bring my only occasional condolence. Especially on the experience of an awful day, I owe my ability to carry on solely to the delightful delicacies I sometimes enjoy.
Acne: This I could believe wholeheartedly did I believe you at all in a social or financial predicament. But old friend I fear that your life, although it may present you with the rarity of an issue, is predominantly fair and does not demand the splurge of sugars that you feel so inclined to receive.
Teenager: Acne, there have been instances where not a trace of sugar reached my lips yet you were still seen upon my appearance, I beg you to explain this.
Acne: In all honesty, my main purpose for constant residence with you is in direct correlation with your extreme stress. The same stress you so proudly flout at your constant worry over me and how others will receive us together.
Me: I fear I believe you not. To think that my stress triggers you to be set off as an alarm bell on my permanent mask is unimaginable!
Acne: Again you worry and fret over unimportants, such as my continual reappearance, but refuse to look deeper into the true problems. Both your own and those outside your physical touch.
Teenager: Acne, have I been so conceited I could not be prevailed upon to search farther than my face for answers? Had I been more present and caring could I not have only lived fuller but better? And looked finer whilst doing it? I repulse myself, not now at the red pustules that distort my features but at my errors. This life I will take now in strides, I will improve my soul and so will fix my appearance. The world is larger now and I play a role in it starting tomorrow, an important role!
Acne: Such a lesson I doubt will remain with you forever, although it be of the nature one should always live by. I wish you the best of luck my old companion and although I hope we never meet again, know in my very fabric we shall indeed remain acquaintances.