Epoxic to My Health

In “Anecdotal Tales”, stories will be told. Some will be fun, some will not. Some will be great, some will be less so. Some stories are true, some are merely possible. This is one of them.

Epoxic to My Health      

It all started out simply enough.  I was a jogger who needed a new pair of shoes and so I snagged the cheapest (but still decent) pair I could find off of an outlet website.  As always, I selected a size 10.  Upon arrival, they fit just as I had hoped.  The only flaw with them that I could find was their removable insoles were, well, “troublesome”.

The left shoe slid just enough to be considered quirky.  No serious discomfort was occurring; a shoe’s gotta do what a shoe’s gotta do.  The right shoe however, was apparently crafted with the innate ability to vex the jogger as much as humanly possible.  Oh sure, it started out benignly in nature.  It would slide back just a smidge.  A half a toenail’s length here, maybe a touch more there; eventually the insert found that it was in charge and could do what it pleased.  Like a junkyard pit bull who has found a hole in the chain link fence, it set about trying to invoke maximum frustration and reckless abandonment for the next few months.

Eventually, I had met my limit of patience.  Stopping, readjusting, and going back to jogging only perpetuated the cycle.  While my speed at tying the shoelace was increasing, the cooperative bond a jogger should have between his feet and his shoes was far from attained.  I felt that it was time for drastic measures.

I broke out the super glue.

Brushing the wonder-adhesive liberally onto my insole and the floor of my shoe, I set about reinserting the insole and pushing.  I figured that this would work marvelously.  My troubles would be over.  Indeed, that was the end result.  For all of two weeks.  Then, through some irksome combination of rain, sweat, pressure, and general usage, the super glue became meager glue.  I went back for a second dose of the chemical but that did not even last two days.

This morning a thought popped into my brain.  As I was slathering on the super glue, one of my coworkers had chimed in with their suggestions.  “You can always use two-part epoxy”.  Having run my laps and felt that all-too familiar feeling of the shoe mocking me, I decided to go nuclear on the sucker.

Epoxy is a wonderful thing.  The two parts by themselves are rather tame.  However, when mixed in equal parts, the adhesion abilities of this chemical wonder are off the charts.  This is not your grandma’s sewing kit glue.  We are taking hard core, don’t mess with it, industrial-strength glue.  Super glue is what people on sitcoms use to play pranks, epoxy is what construction workers use to hang a guy buy his helmet.  So in theory, this glue should have been going overboard.  This epoxy should be the solution to all my problems.

I still don’t know if it works.  Seeing as how I did not want the glue sticking to my fingers, I pulled on a disposable glove.  Then I set about trying to open the tubes that hold the two compounds.  Of course, as soon I ripped off their seals, they started rushing out onto the paper.  I kept it confined to the work area, but I got the feeling I was getting in over my head.  This was quickly confirmed when my “brilliant” innovation to use a straw as a mixing stick proved too flimsy by quite a bit.  So I replaced it with a plastic spoon.  The spoon did not allow for delicate work, but it let me apply the glue to the shoe.

Getting the insert back into the shoe without getting any epoxy, that was another matter.  The insole is a tight fit as is.  Wearing a glove and trying not to three of the four sides of the shoe while still placing it inside carefully proved challenging, to say the least.  I soon found my hand slathered in one of the chemicals two separate times.  Again, epoxy takes time to cure, so I hobbled around trying to find something to clean my hands off.  My left foot still adorned with its shoe, my right foot clad only in a sock, I hobbled comically like something out of an MGM musical.  I was Danny Kaye, aimlessly fumbling from one side of the room to the next.  I did not think that I had any of the other chemical anywhere on me, but I only had a limited time to make sure I was in the clear. 

I tried going to the old sink and using water, but that did nothing.  Adding some kitchen soap produced no results.  I wiped my hand free of the useless soap and wiped my hand with rubbing alcohol.  That worked quite well if I scrubbed hard enough.  Naturally, since this is me, in my hurry to scrub I ended up spilling a considerable amount of cleaning alcohol and the smell began to get to me.  So I had to return to the sink and use the water and soap method again to keep my head from getting too woozy.

I believe I escaped without too much gunk in me.  I hope so.  In the meantime I am left captive to the bonding process.  Ideally my shoe will be fixed because if it is not I am quite thoroughly stuck with the insert the way it is.  It makes me rethink using this method to “fix” my hiking boot.  Perhaps chopsticks would work better than gloves?  Go for the ship-in-a-bottle method?


About Cosand
He's a simple enough fellow. He likes movies, comics, radio shows from the 40's, and books. He likes to write and wishes his cat wouldn't shed on his laptop.

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