I arrived home from work on Tuesday to find that Parcel Force had tried to deliver something while we were out. Popping over the wall to the neighbours, I collected an unexpected box from the US.
“That’s odd”, I thought, “the only thing that would be coming from the States would be… But it can’t be… It’s only been a couple of weeks since I ordered…” A passing glance at the single word description on the shipping label confirmed what I hardly dare think. Batman.
Barely able to contain myself until I got upstairs, I tore at the tape sealing the box, shedding a load of those polystyrene packing “s” shapes across the floor. A layer of clear polyethylene and inside… An Arkham Asylum style cowl. More “s” snow and beneath, a pouch laden utility belt.
I began searching the front junkroom for my old black two piece wetsuit. Locating only the trousers before dinner I resigned myself to wearing just a black top create the correct effect. Racing through dinner, I brought up that I was trying to locate a blue carrier bag, the last place I’d seen the top half of the wetsuit without explaining why. Julie mentioned she’d shifted some stuff about while looking for something else, so I resumed my search elsewhere this time coming up triumphant.
Digging out some motorcycle boots and gloves I locked myself away from her prying eyes to don my ensemble.
Except, it’s been a good fourteen years since I last wore that wetsuit and even then it was a tight fit. In fact, the only reason I’d held onto it after becoming disenchanted with SCUBA diving was with the vague that since it was black and rubberised it might make a good undersuit for some costume or other.
So it was that I entirely failed to heed the fact that the trousers only just made it to my hips with the crotch sitting midway up my thigh and an odd tingling in my right ankle that could possibly be down to me cutting off the circulation in my leg and started to struggle on with the top half. After barely managing to get the whole length of my arms to the end of the sleeves I was in now standing with my head inside the chest area with what anyone with any common sense would realise was far too small a neck opening to actually push my head through. Still nothing ventured, nothing gained, and I started pulling and tugging at the top half to eventually pull it down over my head and chest.
This had now effectively divide my body into thirds, with the bottom of my legs and from the chest upwards sheathed in black rubber and from my midriff remaining bare to the world as the upper part of the wetsuit had bunched up just under my arms.
Now when such a thing occurs when trying to put on a tight jumper it’s simply a case of unrolling it down the body. When you’re mildly claustrophobic and wearing a skin-tight-by-design top about two sizes too small and your hands are starting to turn a bruised red colour, well, I’ll be honest you’re pretty much fucked.
In the latter situation struggling to rearrange things is going to achieve exactly three things:
1) You’re going to start sweating profusely
2) You’re going to quickly tire yourself and get out of breath
3) You’re going got end up MORE awkwardly stuck and shouting someone else for help
Let’s just be glad I wasn’t in the house myself when I’d tried this as I doubt the cat would have been of much assistance.
After extracting me without querying what the hell I was doing Julie returned downstairs and I adopted Plan B: wearing my Stormtrooper undersuit instead. Now we were moving in the right direction.
Utility Belt: check.
Limited Edition Arkham Asylum Replica Batarang that came free with the game: check.
Slanket as a faux cape: check
Cowl: ch- Oh…
The neck of the cowl won’t budge over my forehead.
Recalling my not minutes before experience with tight rubber garments I stop to consider if I can leave it sitting as it is. On the plus side, it would give me the required height. The slight downside being my eyes are looking out from the bottom of the neck.
Still being fairly well lubricated by the pints of sweat on my forehead from the aforementioned events, I’m sure a good hard tug would sort the situation. Mind you a good hard tug might also tear the thing I’ve spent several hundred pounds on before I’ve had the chance to enjoy it…
By way of compromise I put on my Biker Scout balaclava to act as a lining and start gingerly pulling the head-gear into position and take a look in the mirror.