To men of a certain age, Mickey Mantle was the ultimate baseball hero. He could effortlessly (it seemed) hit the ball a mile.
His Oklahoma "aw shucks" looks and public demeanor endeared him to men and women alike. His legendary accomplishments as a New York Yankee earned him a place not only in the Baseball Hall of Fame but in the hearts and minds of a generation.
But there was another side of Mickey Mantle - a dark side and a tragic side. His lifestyle (alcoholism and marital infidelities) led to an early death and this statement a few weeks before dying. "God gave me everything and I blew it. For the kids out there, don't be like me!"
To many men (especially) a sports star is someone they will listen to. Even if he later appears as flawed as the rest of us. That is why the author gives advice not just from a character named "Professor Edwards from the University" but from Mickey Mantle himself.
Six men from a company softball team are described in detail and we follow them through the season via post-game get togethers. The men are of various ages and situations so they cover most of the issues that men face today.
Each chapter focuses on a particular issue, such as Stress, rage, depression and suicide and after the guys "discuss" a problem we get feedback from professor Edwards and Mickey Mantle.
The author states that "…as men, we have done a miserable job of taking care of ourselves." That also means that we probably won't sit down and read a book about men's issues.
But we may read a book where Mickey Mantle gives advice to a bunch of guys who could also be our softball buddies.
What Would Mickey Say: Coaching Men to Health and Happiness uses a clever approach and the voyeuristic peak into the 6 guys' lives makes you want to read more.