This is the first book review I have done for OfficialManCard.com (OMC) In fact, I think its the first book review this website has ever published. With good reason too as How to Drive a Tank: and Other Everyday Tips for the Modern Gentleman is the first recommendation we are making for you to add to the Man Shelf. You know the one, that ledge, step or windows sill in the bathroom. That collection of magazines casually looked through at about 9:45am when that morning coffee, on its race through your system to wake you the F^%K up reaches the finish line and wants out.
Don’t have a Man Shelf? Check your sack sir and make sure they are still there because every guy needs something to read on the throne just like every woman needs something to complain about (ladies please direct all complaints about that comment to Tom at officalmancard.com with the subject “I Like to Complain”). For those of you who don’t have that bathroom repository of printed distraction, its high time you started one.
Before we cover the book I’d like to mention a couple of things about the author Frank Coles or Mr. Adventure as we now refer to him around Official Man Card HQ. First, he has a website with a SHARK on it! and you know how much I LOVE SHARKS!!!! (I F&^K*&G Love Sharks) Second, he contributes to National Geographic Adventure and I’m betting every guy loves the National Geographic channels and websites and not just for the funky animal sex (WHAT! we have all been awake that late and seen it, stop judging me). To read more on Frank “Mr. Adventure” Coles you can visit his site at this link: http://www.frankcoles.com
“How to drive a tank…” reads like a self help manual on doing all the things you have seen in the movies and wanted to do yourself; pick a lock, use a hand break turn to park your car, make something go boom, hide a dead body, and hot wire a car just to name a few. It also covers the softer side of being a bloke like how to be a great Dad and how to charm the ladies. It is a short 432 pages (that’s not a size joke) long where the chapters are broken down into 2 to 10 pages per topic with about 48 topics to keep you entertained; perfect reading for those quick visits to the throne. If you have gotten yourself the hardcover like I did it’s built like a brick or some kind of office ninja desktop weapon. There is something Manly about this book almost like it required power tools to create.
unlike a manual it doesn’t delve to deep into the nitty gritty and this is a good thing as it leaves you some adventure for the hands on final exam should you ever have to employ any of the topics covered in your day to day life. Think of it as a well informed overview that should you find yourself behind the wheel, or in this case, the levers of a tank and with maybe a few wrong turns and a squashed car or two you should be able to go all James Bond on an ex soviet town or city (call me Comrade BOOMSKI!!!!). Frank writes from experience, meaning he got all gung ho, went out and did the very things he writes about in his book and at times you can really get a feel for the excitement he experienced while researching this book.
The author, while filling you in on how to do all these cool, crazy and sometimes naughty subjects, is not encouraging you to go out there and misuse this wealth of knowledge.
While reading “How to drive a tank…” I got a real sense of “with great power comes great responsibility” from reading this book and Frank “Mr Adventure” Coles does offer up some ways on how to do most of these things legally. Lets face it, everyone wants to do what James Bond does but no one wants to go to prison afterwards because you slept with your bosses wife while driving over his car in a T55 tank and trying to defuse a nuclear device … (It was one time people!!! damn you, you judgy bastards!!!)
Finally nothing impressed us more at OMC Headquarters than the introduction and Coulda Woulda, Shoulda. It’s a cold hard slap in the face with a steal gauntlet (mine has a +5 resistance to fire) challenging you to Man up, question what kind of a man you are and get out there and have some fun. Check out a snippet below…
Call yourself a Man? You do? Do you even know what a real Man is? Are you a six foot one Adonis who wears all the latest fashions, moisturizes regularly, visits spas for pleasure and never does anything wrong? Or do you drink twenty pints every Friday night, batter some schmuck on the way home, spend three seconds with the misses and fart yourself to sleep?
A prissy metrosexual or a monosyllabic lad? one-dimensional advertising demographics. Isn’t that what being a man is? Thankfully no. There are as many paths to manhood as there are men. A man can be buff and bucolic, a lover and a fighter a father and a fire starter, a twist or a straight, a rock god or a tank commander and everything else in between.
Being a man means making mistakes, trying things out, knowing when to say no, knowing when to be tender and knowing when to be hard; it’s neither one-dimensional nor any one thing. And lets just clear something up right now: macho is just the bluster of little boys, manly is knowledge and inner strength to find your own path – whatever that turns out to be.
Read this book, add it to the shelf with your current collection or use this “Throne Tome” as the start of something Manley while dropping the kids off at the pool (always drop them off, never push them in, that’s how The King died baby).