Saturday, September 29, 2007

The only relationship advice you'll ever need

Men Like Bars, Women Don't Have a Penis
Iron Balz

Upon first learning the concept behind Men Like Bars, Women Don't Have a Penis, I was immediately curious to see exactly what kind of information "Iron Balz" would relay to their readers. I too feel that self-help books (such as Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus, The Rules, and He's Just Not that Into You, all of which are spoofed by the writers) make money by telling the lonely masses obvious shit about relationships. And yet, people still read this garbage! Do you really need a book to tell you when a man isn't interested in you???

Iron Balz (visit their website here) seem to feel the same way, hence Men Like Bars, Women Don't Have a Penis. In fact, I was hooked upon reading the opening of this short, humorous take on relationship advice, as Iron Balz (the pen name of Matt and John, two brothers) immediately proclaim:

If I was going to write a book for women about how to know when a guy is not into them, it would be one page, with one sentence that reads:

He does not try to fuck you.

Hear, hear. From that gleaming insight grew Men Like Bars, Women Don't Have a Penis. I expected it to be full of more of the same self-evident truths like the above, but I was surprised to actually find some helpful information within its pages. For example, I soon learned the difference between "strange versus romance," and while I probably won't implement any of their advice (much to my husband's chagrin, I'm sure, but I won't let him read Men Like Bars for this very reason), I had a great time reading it.

One of my favorite gems is this diet advice:

Here is the only piece of dieting advice you need: 1) Wake up earlier than usually [sic] and exercise for 20 minutes. 2) Do push-ups, sit-ups, run, power walk, anything other than shoveling bacon in your face. 3) Do not eat anything containing a lot of fats and sugars, and eat slightly less than you do currently.

If you cannot do this then you are not disciplined enough to lose weight, and need to accept the fact that you are always going to be fat. There is no need to waste money on bullshit dieting products. It is nothing to be ashamed of. There are many drunken rugby players that will be willing to have sex with you.

Politically correct? Absolutely not, but quite hilarious nonetheless.

As the authors state at the beginning, this self-published book did not go through a legitimate editing process, so some grammatical and spelling errors have slipped through the cracks. It is a shame that this is so, since it is this aspect of the book that prevents it from being a greater success. If Iron Balz were to clean up some of the mechanics of Men Like Bars, Women Don't Have a Penis, they'd have a sure-fire hit on their hands. (Hence the rating below; I'd have rated it more highly were it not for the grammatical and spelling errors, which wounded the cold little heart of this poor, beleaguered English teacher.)

In a nutshell: You may not need their advice, but you'll definitely get a laugh out of Men Like Bars. Be warned, though, that this book is not politically correct: it's raunchy, it's (at times) sexist -- and it's pretty damned funny.

Bibliolatry Scale: 3 out of 6 stars


Sean said...

Nice to see one of favorite reviewer tackling some self-published stuff! It can be a wilderness, but there are some very good self-published books out there.

*cough, cough* like mine *cough, cough*

Editing is the most difficult part of self-publishing. No one ever tells you that, though. When my first book came out, I got a lot of comments on the editing. Namely, that it sucked. Then I discovered I'd sent the wrong file to my publisher. Oops. Before I discovered this, though, I sent a copy to my high school English teacher (who was a major influence on my decision to try this whole writing thing). I am sure it made her cry. And not in a good way.

Erin said...

An advice book actually worth reading...hilarious! Especially the dieting advice. Sadly the fucking comment is too true.