Friday, June 27, 2008

taken for a walk

when something is offered for a song, be prepared to be taken for a ride. i bought this pair of sandals for $20 because the pasar malam vendor was 'trying to clear stock and this was his last pair'. i congratulated myself for my good fortune because the pair i had bought in johor bahru a few months ago gave up on me.

i first wore them when i went for dinner at eastern restaurant at centrepoint. while waiting for the food to be served, i found out that one of the sandals was without its sole. i checked the other sandal and found that its sole was also coming apart. the dropped sole was beside my chair. i detached the loose one and put both pieces in a plastic bag i had with me.

a few days later i sought my friend, the handyman, for his advice on how to fix the soles. he told me to get a new pair. anyway, he said if i really wanted to try and mend it, i should use contact glue or cow glue from the hardware shop or paint shop. hardware shops do not sell cow glue. when i checked with a paint shop, i was told it was an offence to buy or sell cow glue as a result of glue sniffing.

so i went to the hardware shop and bought a tube of contact cement. they do not call it contact glue but you can tell from the smell that it is glue. i followed the instructions and wore the sandals again after letting the cement to take hold for one day. the soles came unstuck again after i completed my one hour nature walk.

i decided that a professional would be able to do the job and do it better. i sent it to a cobbler at toa payoh. when i went back to collect the sandals, the cobbler told me he gave up after his third attempt at trying to glue the two parts together. they just would not stick. he did not charge me for the failed repair job.

i should have listened to my handyman friend's first advice. my advice: be wary of special offers, especially at pasar malams.

tried fixing the base again using cement glue. the man at the hardware shop explained to me that the rubber cement was not the fast drying type. you would have to apply the glue liberally on both sides, wait until they are almost dry and then press the two pieces together. you also need to apply pressure; in other words, you have to step into it for a while to help the glue to set.


nah said...

contact glue which is contact cement is not cow glue which is animal glue which is called 'niew pee cheow' which can also be bought from chinese medicine shops and was used in the good old days to coat glass powder onto a string which was then used in kite fighting. animal glue is made from animal offal which stinks when it is prepared for use and is not used in glue sniffing but for strenghtening wood joints, paper etc.

yg said...

so, cow glue is not animal glue. cow glue came in a slab which we boiled and then mixed with glass powder to coat the layang string? animal glue is used in wood work but not cow glue, right?

nah said...

you still did not get it right.cow glue is animal glue and it is sold in three different forms - liquid,pearl and slab.liquid glue is used for paper work; the pearl form is easier to prepare for use and is used for inferior work like coating layang string,etc; the slab form is the best quality of the three and is used in wood work.

yg said...

so, cow glue and animal glue are the same thing. cow glue is also known as animal glue.

Victor said...

Well, look at it this way - you really got value for money as you have 2 pair of sandals for the price of one. Haha.