I'm pretty certain I wasn't the first or the only barefoot running enthusiast to take a pair of socks (or pair of shoes) and MacGyver a minimal 2nd skin.
It was the summer of 2003 and I was still getting used to the heat of Ft. Myers, Florida. Without question a mecca for year-round running. There was only one problem. The long summer made unshod running on the skillet hot pavement too much too handle. My running was limited to a frustrating 20 minutes. So...
I took a pair of basic low-cut cotton socks and painted several coats of liquid latex rubber on the sole, toes and heel. (I wish I had a pic). Imagine an ultra thin poor man's version of the FiveFingers. But alas, FiveFingers were yet to make their way to Robert Fliri's sketchbook. I named my new invention 'Flexsocks' and began running in them around my community. They lasted no more than about 30 miles before they started to fall apart. But for only $4 it didn't really matter.
It become apparent very quickly that these rubber socks of mine would not revolutionize running. So I put my idea on the back burner for a couple of years.