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Initial experience with fabric glue leads to a sticky situation [For Better or Worse]

I have a pair of pink plastic garden clogs that are so comfortable that even though gardening season ended, I've been wearing them around the house.

They do have a defect: The padded inserts that cushion the foot bed of each machine-washable shoe falls out and curls up when washed.

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I won't be washing them until I start slogging around in mud next spring; so I decided the inserts had to be attached to the clogs...immediately.

I should have known no good could come of it.

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The full extent of my familiarity with fabric glue is as follows: Last spring, I took some of my karate students to a tournament. I brought along some spiffy new school patches for their uniforms, but there was no time to sew them on before competition began. Doug, who'd tagged along for moral support – but mostly to carry my stuff – attached a patch to each student's gi – or uniform – using fabric glue, while I ran around making sure my kids were signed up for the right events in the right belt and age divisions.

After the first half of the first round of the first event, every patch was barely hanging on. By the second event, only one kid even knew where his patch was.

I kept the glue, thinking it might come in handy someday. That someday came when I decided to glue the inserts into my clogs.

Sitting on the bed, a clog in my lap, I opened the glue, aimed the nozzle directly at the underside of the insert and gave the bottle a squeeze. Nothing happened.

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So I squeezed again. Harder. Still no glue on the shoe insert. It it was, however, all over the rug, the bed, the wood floor, the shoe, and me. A smidgen of dried glue in the nozzle had caused it to squirt sideways: pppllliiittthhhttt!

My sole experience with fabric glue being that I'd handed it to Doug for the kids' uniform patches, how was I to know that hot water and soap doesn't remove it, but actually sets it faster?

I ran downstairs. "Waaaaah," I cried, standing in front of the TV to get Doug's attention. "Waaaaaaah!" I repeated, displaying the mess on my shirt – the new shirt that I'd worn for the first time that day.

"Try nail polish remover," Doug suggested as the second half of the game began.

Minutes later, I reappeared downstairs, reeking of acetone.

"Look!" I wailed, holding out my shirt with an even bigger white splotch.

Distracted as somebody intercepted or threw a football, Doug said, "Buy a new one."

"These are my favorite exercise leggings, too!" I yowled.

"When did you last wear them to exercise?" he queried.

"Never," I admitted. "But they hold my tummy in!"

"Buy new ones," he said.

Dejectedly, I plopped down on the couch, my lower lip quivering. "Hold still," Doug said, abruptly ripping a patch of dried glue from my arm, taking with it hair and skin.

"How can something that won't even stick a patch to a uniform for more than three minutes create such destruction?" I pondered aloud.

Doug didn't hear me. The commercial had ended and his eyes were glued – to the TV.

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