I've got cement boots--and I'm stuck in them. Have been for quite a while. No--they're not concrete. They're worse because I can't get them off--and believe me, my husband and I have tried everything to get them off. They can't be cut or broken--wait, I'm getting ahead of myself here. Let me tell you my story.
My name is Karen, and my husband is Mike. Mike is a chemist who works for a big adhesives manufacturer. He's in R&D, and has several patents to his name for processes and compounds he came up with. He's got this habit of getting ideas at all hours, as so has a lab set up down in our basement where he can experiment when he wants to--and some of the ideas he comes up with would even surprise his bosses!
We met one day at a small beach next to a river. I was walking along the bank, not paying much attention to where I was going when I stepped into a really soft area that suddenly gave way under me. I had walked right into some quicksand! But I didn't scream or yell out, because this was something I had thought about doing at times--so now I was going to go through with it. BUT--someone else had seen me go down into the quicksand and came running--it was Mike. I just stopped and stared, because he didn't stop--he jumped in right beside me. He grabbed at me, telling me not to be scared and that he was going to get us out, but then HE stopped when I started laughing at his antics. Turns out we both had the same 'game' thoughts in mind!
Well, we spent the day together--having fun--and getting to know each other. We hit it off right away, and six months later were married. As time went by, we kept on playing at our games--quicksand, mud, then plaster, glue and cement. When we finally bought a house, we had a ball remodeling it, and fooling around with the building materials while we were at it.
But--to my predicament. One day while Mike was at work, I was down in the basement doing laundry when I came across a couple of containers of liquid rubbery material Mike was working on. He had told me the stuff was in two parts, mixed and poured easily, and sets like rubber cement--hard but flexible. I thought since I had nothing to do that afternoon that I would surprise Mike tonight. He had just had metal molds made to make womens boots and had put my feet into plaster the past weekend. he had painted the plaster, and the results looked pretty good--just like real wearable women's boots! I wanted to stay in them and had done so overnight, but the plaster had gotten damaged, and Mike finally broke them off the next day.
OK, I thought, Mike wasn't due home for at least three or four hours, plenty of time for me to do what I wanted to. I got myself a thermos of ice tea and a couple of sandwiches, then sat down and started on the surprise. I got the boot molds, fastened the halves together, mixed a small amount of the rubber mixture and poured the 'soles' of my new boots. While I waited for them to set, I mixed a larger amount to make the boots themselves. Just for fun, i pushed my feet down into the mix and pulled them up. The stuff looked like molasses clinging to my feet. I thought to myself that plaster felt about the same but not as sticky, and wondered how sticky it would be when the stuff had set. I should have realized it may stay sticky and stopped then, but I was having too much fun, really wanted to go through with making Mike his surprise--and I didn't know what to use to clean my feet off--so I kept going. I opened the mold halves, put my feet into them and reclosed them. I then poured the mixture into the molds, bringing the mix up to about half way up my calves. When I had both 'boots' done, I sat back with a couple of magazines, my sandwiches and tea to relax.
About an hour later, I felt first one foot get warm, then the other--and warmer still, but it wasn't too bad, and I wasn't going to stop now--I didn't want to spoil Mike's surprise. I didn't know we were both going to get a surprise--and very soon now. About an hour later, I checked the 'boots' and found the stuff had set and was dry, and I mean dry--no stickyness, just a rubbery surface. I figured I could get the molds off and get on with making supper. I had a nice evening planned out--just being at home and playing around.
I unlocked the clamps that held the boot mold halves together, but the molds wouldn't come off the boots. I started to get a little worried, but finally got the molds off with some prying and twisting. I stood up and looked at the results of my work. Wow! I thought. These look just like a pair of boots from a store! The mixture was a cruddy brown when I had started, but had turned midnight black. I found I could walk fairly easily in them--although they were more than a little stiff, they felt just fine. They should be--they were custom made just for me. I went upstairs and made a nice supper and set the table--and waited for Mike to get home.
When he walked in, I walked over to him, kissed him, and asked, "How do you like my boots, Hon?" He looked and said, "They really look nice! Where did you buy them?" When I said I had made them, he stopped short and looked at me--then asked "Out of what?" When I told him "Out of the stuff in the red canisters downstairs." I thought he was going to have a heart attack because he went white. "The stuff in the red canisters on my bench?" he asked, and when I said "Yes", he grabbed my hand and pulled me toward the cellar door. "Come on, we've got to get those off your feet NOW!" "Why?" I asked, and he replied "Because that 'stuff' is an experimental epoxy resin rubber cement compound that welds itself to anything rubber or plastic like after a couple of hours. The stuff only sticks weakly to metal, that's why you were able to get the molds off--or you'd have metal boots on." I numbly followed him downstairs, starting to cry as I did so.
An hour later, Mike was sitting across from me, and I was on the chair I had used to imprison myself. "I can't get them off you." he said. "The cement compound has cured, and I'm telling you it'll last just about forever. Those 'boots' are on your feet to stay--I can't even peel the top away from your skin. The material and your skin are really fused together. I can't cut the stuff at all. I can't even pull a piece out of it--it's that strong." I was really crying now--I never wanted this! But to be fair, I had to remember I did this to myself and had nobody else to blame for my situation--I had never bothered to ask Mike about the stuff first.
That was over six years ago, and today I'm still in my 'Cement Boots'. I've gotten used to them--and I've gotten pretty good at making excuses about why I don't like any other style of footwear. Imagine if it became known why I never wore any other shoes or boots! Our homelife is also manageable--but just. In bed, the boots constantly get tangled up in the sheets, and Mike's poor shins won't ever be the same. He is sweet about it, though.
He keeps telling me he'll get a solvent together that will finally free me from my prisons--but I'm not holding out much hope. Some mixtures he tries does dissolve samples of the rubbery material, but he says the solvent will dissolve my skin too. Nothing else--and I do mean NOTHING--has damaged those 'boots' since the day I made them. Even the soles show no wear whatever. Sharp knives, nails, saws--everything-- either just bounces off them or slides across them. The stuff won't even burn--or freeze. It is still tightly--and permanently--fused to my skin too.I really do have 'cement boots', and even though I'm more or less used to them, I don't like them--not one little bit.