Tales from the Tiltboys

Tales from the Tiltboys

by The Tiltboys

Let’s get one thing out of the way: Tales from the Tiltboys is NOT a poker book.  It’s a book about poker players, yes, but if you are looking for deep poker strategy, you will be sorely disappointed.  In fact, your poker game might suffer from reading this book, unless you really, really, love to gamble it up.

The Tiltboys are a group of free-wheeling, poker playing, gamble-on-anything, buddies that go back to the late 1980’s.  The most well-known names in the bunch are professional poker players Phil Gordon, Rafe Furst, and Perry Friedman, but they aren’t necessarily always the dominant figures in the group.  In fact, a couple of the other, “unknown” Tiltboys often seemed to be revered amongst their friends, whether it is because of their personalities, or, more likely, because they have an ironclad deal with the gambling gods.

So what IS this book about?  Put simply, it is a collection of stories about the relationships and exploits of the Tiltboys.  From their ridiculous home game to their Roshambo (Rock-Paper-Scissors) obsession to dressing in drag to play in a ladies’ tournament, it does not appear that much was withheld.  

While most definitely an entertaining book, the stories do get a little played out after a while.  Sure, it is fun to read about a bunch of guys wagering hundreds of dollars on whose luggage will hit the carousel first and their drunken, gambool-rific Vegas trip reports make you wonder how men like this actually exist, but it starts to feel repetitive after a while.  I was going to say it is like listening to your friend’s crazy party stories from his college days, but it pretty much IS that.  Some of the stories are even presented through e-mail conversations, just as they might be if your best friend wanted to detail to you his binge drinking Friday night from three thousand miles away.

The book could actually make a funny movie, as seeing the yarns played out on the big screen could be a riot, not unlike a film such as Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle.  In fact, according to the Tiltboys website, the rights to the movie have been picked up.

If you like reading funny stories by people you don’t know on blogs and message forums, then this book is right up your alley.  Plus, it features a few poker celebrities, so picturing them in some of the odd situations that are detailed in the 207 pages can be fun for any poker fan.  In fact, you can essentially preview the book for free on the Tiltboys website, as they continue post stories.  So, if you end up bookmarking that site, you’ll want to buy the book.  Those who are not entertained by inside jokes may want to pass.

As a final note, the Tiltboys are donating half of the proceeds from the book to charity, continuing their altruistic ways that are well-known throughout the poker world.