Good Old Dutch Courage.
With the wedding ceremony done and dusted, you rush to the reception as quickly as the driver can get you there — but even Jason Statham in a hurry wouldn’t be fast enough today. It’ll be the only time you’ve tried to be at the bar first, because it’s important to down six pints before sitting down for the meal. You’re the best man, you need a relaxer, a few pints as per, and a double JD and coke to sip while you’re knocking out the speech you threw together last night. Job’s a fish.
Everyone’s sat down. Everyone’s enjoying themselves. And everyone’s tucking in to a cracking meal… while relaxed. Everyone but you. The food might just as well be cardboard because there’s only two things on your mind right now — the speech, and the desperate need for more alcohol to relax. Oh, the joys of being a best man.
The guests are chatting, getting merry and waiting for the, all important, speeches to start. There’s a good atmosphere, and the father of the bride gets up and delivers a heart warming, funny speech. (Tosser!) The applause is amazing and the audience is almost salivating, lapping up every word. Let’s hope the groom gets up and is really unfunny. Please…
So, of course, the groom gets up and he’s bloody hilarious, he even has a dig at you. (Bastard!) Just wait until I get up, I’m going to be so funny now I’ve had a few, the comedy just rolls off the tongue after a few beers.
Finally the room falls silent after another rapturous applause, and all eyes are on you. You take another swig and try to stand, but your legs aren’t working properly. Wobbling to your feet, you look around and squeak a quick hello. You try to thank the bridesmaids; there’s brief laughter followed by silent disbelief as you instead mutter something about a spank. But that’s the least of your worries because the mother-in-law has just taken offence to something about “an old dragon”, yes the words are really flowing now! As the father of the bride makes his way over to take a swing, you find the crowd divided; half of your audience want you to go on all night, the rest want you removed from the building. Either way, YouTube will let you relive that golden speech for years.
But I Digress… Does It Help?
Regarding nerves, it didn’t make a blind bit of difference to me, or those I’ve spoken to since. Sure, a couple of drinks helps the mood, but I was still nervous as hell. What really gets you through is knowing that the speech you’re about to deliver isn’t going to offend, will be funny, and will get the crowd behind you, not against you.
The only way to nail all three is to consider all aspects while… sober. You want the bride, groom, family and friends to laugh and warm to you. Tell funny stories without being crude, or leave them out altogether. Ask yourself would it offend your mother? Grandmother? It’s a simple test and you’ll be glad you used it.
If unsure, play it safe. Use different material and just have a couple of drinks… or get properly mullered and go down in a blaze of best man’s glory! (And please send me the link:)
If you have a wedding coming up and need a hand with your speech, get in touch today.