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TGBC Monthly Challenge - #StraightArms

Is Tough Guy Book Club a drinking club with a reading problem, or the other way around? We get asked this question sometimes, but mostly because everyone’s mum used to come home from their book club hammered on Fruity Lexia.

We’re never really felt the need to speak seriously about this because we like a beer but the guys in our club know where we stand on this, you can’t read a book if you’ve had too many and that’s our goal reading and talking about books, but honestly, everyone should have a regular look at their relationship and attitude with the beers. So let’s talk. We don’t like making big blanket statements on stuff, it’s not really our thing butttt if you are the kind of person who really needs things spelt out to you nice and clear here's our absolutely official policy plank, manifesto, nailed to the door statement on alcohol. You ready? We like pubs. They're warm and historical, they are good to read in and they have weird old carpets that smell nice and they sell beer. We also like beer, it's golden, foamy, and tasty, and it makes folks relaxed and more likely to slow down for a minute to have a longer conversation about what’s important in life. We especially like books, they are full of all kinds of interesting ideas, and things to talk about. What’s better than a good book? Well I can tell you when pair pubs and beers with books then you get the secret sauce of life because if you mix all 3, then you get all the good stuff from each of them. We’re a pub book club and always will be but drinking is not a requirement to be involved in this club and it never has been. So in simple terms; don’t like beers no problem, don’t like pubs big problem, don’t like books wrong club. Our love of beers, books and rowdy conversation in pubs is what makes us the unique club that we are, the one that encourages men who don't read much to come and try a book club. Because y'know... bribery..

Well I hope that’s nice and clear for ya. With that said our challenge for April 2022 was to get out there with another goon and do something without a pub or beer in sight.

We called it #StraightArms.

And it turns out we're really good at it! Every time we set a challenge like this we get a deluge of fascinating stuff. Goons getting into the outdoors for park or trail runs, overnight hiking, surfing, golf, paddle boarding or an afternoon at the footy. Goons getting together to share nerdy hobbies like archery, motorcycles, guitars and music and gigs, tabletop and board games, bowling (both the lawn and tenpin variety), even goddamn blacksmithing. And goons doing completely normal things like catching up for coffee or taking their kids to the playground. We had 7 dudes from Altona VIC get up at the crack of dawn for the ANZAC Day service! Can't do that hungover!

Seriously, you could take the booze out of this club tomorrow and you'd still have a bunch of good friends with long reading lists and strong literary opinions. At the same time, we still love a good beer with the lads and if a bit of amber liquid courage is what helps a new guy walk into a room full of strangers to argue about books, we're okay with that too. We're here to expand your bookshelf and your brain, we're trying to destroy your loneliness, not your liver.

See you in the pub for a beer or an orange juice very soon.

Remember you can’t read a book if you’ve had too many, drink responsibly or else.

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