4 Essential Skills Every Man Needs to Know

The new book Man Up! 367 Classic Skills for the Modern Guy, by Paul O'Donnell, provides quick fixes to vexing problems faced by ordinary dudes.

By Reader's Digest Editors
4 Essential Skills Every Man Needs to Know

It sounds like a campaign slogan once used by former U.S. senate hopeful Christine O’Donnell. In fact, Man Up! 367 Classic Skills for the Modern Guy (Artisan, $14.95) by Paul O’Donnell (no relation), is a forthcoming book that’s meant to provide quick fixes to the many vexing problems an ordinary dude may wind up facing in his lifetime. From how to change a flat tire to how to survive a night in jail, this guide has the solutions. Here are just a few:

What kitchen knife should I choose if I’m buying only one? An 8-inch chef’s knife, which you can use to cut practically everything. Look for forged-steel varieties as opposed to stamped-steel ones: Though pricier, they have good balance and keep their edge nicely.

How do I throw a perfect spiral? Hold the ball as far back on the laces as you can while maintaining a tight grip. As you bring your arm forward, your wrist should be cocked backward ninety degrees. As your hand and the ball pass just behind and above your ear, straighten your wrist with a snap so your hand ends up palm down. Follow through with your arm until your fingers are pointed directly at the ground.

What’s the best way to ice beer properly? “On” ice is a misnomer, since perching bottles and cans atop a pile of ice results in warm beer. Fill the beer box instead with an 80/20 mix of ice and water. Submerge the bottles up to their necks. Not only will the beer get cold sooner and stay cold longer, but the ice won’t cut the hands of people rummaging for the beer they want. If you’re trying to chill beer quickly, give each bottle a quick spin (not shake) every few minutes. This circulates the cooled liquid through the bottle.

How do I whistle loudly? Make a circle with your thumb and forefinger. Place the crease where your thumb and finger touch loosely against the tip of your tongue and inside your mouth, slightly behind your teeth. Pull your lips in to cover your teeth and clamp down firmly. Expel air out forcefully, adjusting the angle of your fingers against your tongue until you get a whistling sound.

Source: Man Up! 367 Classic Skills for the Modern Guy (available April 28)

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