For several months now I've been walking in on my husband at the computer, poring over a certain Web site. Many a chore has gone undone. Many a meal has gone cold.
But, you know what? I don't mind. In fact, I'm hooked on the site myself.
I'm talking about the blog, The Art of Manliness. Chock full of how-tos, from how to shave with a straight razor to how to make a bed so tight it could bounce a quarter, as well as tips for the proper dressing and grooming of men and general random, manly advice, it's easy to get caught up at the site for hours at a time. Lord knows we've done it.
That's why, when Brett McKay, one of the authors of the blog, contacted me and shared that not only is the blog based in Tulsa but that he and his wife/blogging partner, Kate, just published a book based on the blog, my husband and I did a happy dance so obnoxious, so loud, so vile that we scared our toddler into crying for half an hour.
We're sorry, son. But, we couldn't contain ourselves. One day, thanks, we're sure, to advice from The Art of Manliness book and blog, you'll be able to get through this life without needing too much therapy.
While it would behoove men (and the women who love them) everywhere to purchase copies of this book for themselves, I'm proud to present this little volume as the gift du jour in the Tasha Does Tulsa Holiday Gift Guide. With The Art of Manliness: Classic Skills and Manners for the Modern Man, a full-bodied outgrowth of The Art of Manliness blog, is a wealth of information that ranges from survival skills to advice on how to improve your character, whether you're braving the wilds with your buds, courting your girlfriend or raising a family.
The book features such guides as:
- Shave like your grandpa
- Be a perfect houseguest
- Fight like a gentleman using the art of bartitsu
- How to fold a paper airplane
- Give a man a hug
- Perform a fireman's carry
- Ask for a woman's hand in marriage
- Raise resilient kids
- Predict the weather like a frontiersman
- Start a fire without matches
- Give a dynamic speech
- How to identify and choose from among the types of men's hats
- Modern technology and the new rules of etiquette
What man who aspires to all things virile, I ask, is not in sore need of this book? That it's homegrown is a bonus, sure, but everything on each of the 274 pages of this book is pure gold, from the glossary of manly nineteenth-century vernacular to the ready-to-use Theodore Roosevelt's list of insults. At $16.99 at local bookstores (or, as of today, $11.55 on Amazon.com), it's a gift that's sure to please on the cheap.
Know what'd be extra cool? Winning the Expert Gifter of the Year award from you favorite dude, whether that's your best friend, your boss, your partner in crime or your significant other. In pursuit of this possibility, I'm going to try my own hand at writing a how-to, in the style of manliness experts and bloggers/authors Brett and Kate McKay:
How To Win an Autographed Copy of The Art of Manliness, for the Gifter
Find the comments section of this post. Proceed to the field at the bottom of this page. Key in your name, your e-mail address and other pertinent Web information.
Add a comment. Share one of your personal tips for cultivating manliness, whether you're a man or someone who chooses to grace them with your presence.
Press "comment." Then, sit back and wait - at least, for a few minutes. If you feel compelled to share more than one of your personal tips for maximum manliness, leave another comment. In fact, you're free to leave as many comments as you like. Each one will count as an entry when I use Random.org to select a winner of a signed copy of The Art of Manliness this Friday night (Nov. 27) at 8pm.
Ta-Da! You've just entered the contest for a free copy of this manual to end all manuals on manliness. You're well on your way to winning that Expert Gifter of the Year award.
Good luck, everyone. In the words of Brett and Kate McKay, stay manly this holiday season.
The Art of Manliness: Classic Skills and Manners for the Modern Man
by Brett and Kate McKay
Paperback, 274 pages