Reverse Whack-a-Mole Pimples

Don’t want pimples?

Whatever you do, don’t touch your face.


Touching your face results in what I like to call “reverse whack-a-mole pimples.” Whereas whacking a plastic pop-up mole in an arcade makes the mole go away, touching your face makes zits pop up.  It’s like a touchscreen of irritation (incidentally, “Touchscreen of Irritation” was the original name of the iPad, but it tested poorly).

I should have already known about this phenomenon. Age-wise, I’m close to the back nine, and I should be busy hoarding pills so my childless ass can whack myself in the state-run old folks home someday, not fretting about kiddy issues like pimples. But instead, I spent the last few months staring forlornly at the pimples I was getting on my cheeks. My cheeks. I had never had cheek zits before.

Then I realized I’d been sleeping on my hand. I think I used to have my hand up under the pillow, and then my face on the pillow, but for whatever reason, now I was sleeping directly on my hand. Wherever my hand touched my face, a nice new crop of pimples appeared.  My “fertilizing” them with Easter chocolate probably didn’t help.

It is not easy to train yourself not to do something you do when you’re asleep. Ask my husband about my snoring. And my therapist about my night-knitting.

(no Mom, I don’t really have a therapist, I would have told you. ….It’s a joke. ….Well I don’t know why jokes and lies are the same thing, they just are sometimes…. Ok Mom, I have to get back to the article now.. ok…ok…ok…ok.. bye…ok… ok… bye)

Sorry about that. What was I saying?  Oh right, how to stop sleeping on my hand. I couldn’t tie my hand to my leg without my husband accusing me of reading 50 Shades of Gray, and I’d rather read Lil Wayne’s diary then that hot mess. Wearing gloves makes my paws sweaty. Cutting off my hands seemed extreme, and once I removed one, how would I remove the other?

I’ve just made myself very aware of where my hands are, and that seems to have helped. If I wake up and find them nestled under my cheek, I move them.

Fun with Pimples

But since I’ve shared with you the secret of growing pimples now we can have some fun with this knowledge.

Some pimple ideas:

  • Do an off-broadway remake of The Scarlet Pimpernel as “The Scarlet Pimplenel.”
  • Touch your face in constellation patterns to teach your amazed children about the stars.
  • Touch your face to spell out “DIE” on your forehead to get rid of unwanted roommates.
  • If you’re an Indian spinster who wishes she was married, touch yourself between your eyes.
  • Touch your cheeks a LOT and then go to Halloween parties as Seal.


PS: I had a terrible crush on Anthony Andrews as The Scarlet Pimpernel, and it physically pained me to deface him for the sake of comedy. But that’s what comedy does. It tears out your heart and stomps it into little pieces.

Amy Vansant
Latest posts by Amy Vansant (see all)

18 Responses

  1. Abby

    I hate the word “pimple” more than I hate actual pimples. I don’t know why, but I do. And I agree 100 percent. Touching things make them worse, but it’s like a moth being drawn to a flame…


  2. Amy Vansant

    Actually, if you just keep saying it over and over it loses all it’s power and becomes really goofy. Pimple pimple pimplepimplepimple.


  3. Melissa Marie

    I hit 34 and suddenly had the skin of a lonely 13 year old. And not in fun shapes or patterns. I had switched to the IUD from other birth control and I guess my body isn’t a fan. However, it was a huge out of pocket expense and you can’t return them so if I remove it I’m out the money… besides, I’m really hoping it just dissolves because the insertion wasn’t an enjoyable thing that I chose to do.

    So it feels like a choice between not getting pregnant and having good skin which feels really stupid because when I have terrible skin no one wants to impregnate me anyway.


  4. Carrie - Cannibalistic Nerd

    I’m pretty sure drooling doesn’t help, either. There’s actually a protective gel thing you can buy that kind of seals off your face from stuff like that. I’m deeply sad that I know these things.


    • Amy Vansant

      I’m impressed… and a little concerned you’re not getting ANY work done and instead watching Super Friends and researching face seals… And now I have a visual of an actual seal stuck to a person’s face like an alien.


  5. Deb

    As a kid growing up, I remember I had such severe acne, that there were clusters upon clusters piled up on my cheeks, forehead and chin areas. There wasn’t an area of non-infected skin that I can remember. I was about 16 years old and embarrassed. Kids made fun of me behind my back and I remember one teacher saying, “Oh honey, does that hurt?” I was mortified. I then started taking Acutane. This medication has every side effect known to man, that you have to sign at least 50 pages of “warnings”. I didn’t care. I was suicidal over my FACE. I remember the doctor telling me, “Do NOT touch your face!” But it itched and I couldn’t help it. It finally went away – the acne – but from time to time, whenever I get that PMS pimple, I am conditioned to NEVER touch it. I learned a technique that really works: I take a wash cloth, put steaming HOT water on it and press it against the affected area. The next day —-gone. At least, this is what works for me.

    This brought back memories… And don’t forget — wash your pillow cases every week if you can. There are so many hidden germs in not only the casing, but the pillow itself.


    • Amy Vansant

      Yikes – thanks for the tips! Glad your face has stopped going rogue on you! (and you’re gorgeous so clearly you’ve recovered!)


      • Deb

        Why thank you. I love photoshop. 😉 Yes, I recovered thank God, but I start screaming when I get those HUGE ass boils. The WORST! Or the ones that grow on your eyebrow. God help me.


  6. Tiffany N. York

    Ah yes, there’s nothing like having pimples AND wrinkles! Obnoxious neighbor kid came over and asked me in that painfully honest, obnoxious and rude manner that kids have: “Why do you have pimples on your face?”

    I told her they were ‘wisdom pimples’–that I stored my wisdom inside them (?) sigh. Brat.


  7. cj

    Although pimple is an inherently funny word, you were able to work some real magic here. I especially liked the idea of fertilizing them with Easter chocolate. Do you think hummus would work too?


  8. Tammy R

    Amy! I found myself laughing hysterically at this line: I should be busy hoarding pills so my childless ass can whack myself in the state-run old folks home. What was just Oh-this-is-so-funny laughter turned to sheer terror as I realized that I should start hoarding pills for my childless ass too!!!


    • Amy Vansant

      Yeah, all this gloating about how much irresponsibility I can squeeze into each day might turn on me eventually…


  9. Damien

    One could remake The Shining and write REDRUM across your cheeks.


  10. Lisa Newlin

    This idea is brilliant! I personally love the Indian spinster one and the one where you spell out “DIE”

    I also hate 50 Shades of Gray. It was the worst piece of literature ever written. I suspect Snookie’s book was better.


  11. Gina

    I have never been one of those people that had that beautiful clear skin. I thought that I would eventually grow out of it, but no.

    At 39 years old I still find myself waking up with new friends hanging out on my face. I figure I’ll just go with it and name each them as they appear and have a going away ceremony when they leave.

    Fuck it.


  12. SarcasticNinja

    I was a little sad to see Anthony Andrews pimplified, too. I love that movie. But you must suffer for your art. While providing public service information and creative advice, too!


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