This wedding season set the record for me. I was invited to six weddings, attended five, and attempted suicide at two. I drank two-hundred Crown and nothings at each one and heard thousands of sentimental words dedicated to the well being of a newly-wed couple. Wooo. With all of these weddings, I heard a lot of wedding speeches. Some were good, some were downright terrible, and others were incoherent, but the speech I focus in on the most is the best man’s. To me, it is the most intriguing to see the dynamic of different friendships and how they are represented come wedding time. I know whenever I get married my friends are going to be completely inappropriate, drink too much, and try and bang my cousins – and that’s fine. That’s just how my friendships have played out. My friends are disrespectful degenerates and it works because I fit nicely into the description as well.
But I do know if I ever get the “honor” to be any of my idiot friend’s best man, when speech time rolls around, I will not stand up there and make an ass of myself. Not because I want to represent my friend well, but because I have already done irreparable damage to my reputation thus far in life and I see these as baby steps to attempt to recover some of the destruction. So after much research and careful attention paid, here are the type of best man speeches you don’t want to fall under when it’s your time to deliver.
Unprepared and non-quick-witted ass hat. There are some people out there who can just jump on stage and just kill mics. They can take the reigns and spit hot fire off the dome with little context or preparation. Most of the time those people are paid for that skill in some form or another. But that’s not you. You are a finance major who has been drinking since noon and the last time you had to do any sort of public speaking was when you plead “no contest” in court to your minor in possession charge in college. Anyone who I have seen go up there and try to “wing it” normally ends up “fucking it up.” They ramble aimlessly about all the non-specific good times they have had and take soft swings at jokes and by the time it wraps up they are just staring at the floor drooling on themselves like an infant child without their binky. Think about what you want to say, write something down, and half-ass practice it. It doesn’t have to be the Gettysburg Address but at least attempt to put some coherent thoughts together, cause if you don’t, those cousins are going to look right past your stumbling-mumbling-grumbling ass.
Inside joke Magoo. Inside jokes are called inside jokes because the people on the outside of the joke don’t get it. The wedding you’re at is 99 percent outsiders. No one understands that one time you were in that one place with that one guy during that one year. Unless you give your audience the full details of the story and give them something they can relate to, any humor you try to scatter in there is going to fall flat on its face besides the dull scattered laughter of the four people who get it, the three people being nice, and the one guy who is just too shit-canned to know what is going on. And if a story in your speech concludes with “you just had to be there” you might as well order up a double bleach and tonic for your next drink because you’ve essentially killed any hopes or dreams you had for putting together a successful speech.
You’re drunk. You’re drunk, Jules. Hey, I am never in any position nor ever the guy to ever tell anyone in the history of whatever to quit drinking. But everyone knows their limits and yada, yada, booze stuff. I’m not saying don’t drink, hell I’m not saying don’t get drunk – get fucking bombed for all I care. Just make sure you can pull your shit together in time to deliver a comprehensible speech because little Johnny’s grand-ma-ma is literally sitting 18-feet in front of you and she hasn’t had a drop of alcohol since Nixon was in office. She doesn’t understand why you have such a violent case of the hiccups and she sure as hell didn’t travel 200 miles with a bad heart to watch some over-served dip shit not talk about how much her grand-boy means to him, his family, his wife, and the world. If you can swing the drunk in your favor – do it. My only advice would be “don’t bank on it.”
Holy shit, we get it. You’ve known the guy since grade school. You went to high school together. Roomed together in college. Lived together after college. You played sports with him. Had your first beer with him. You’re Eskimo bros. You guys do that awesome trip every year. You’ve done everything together (just) short of sucking the guy off. By virtue of being the best man everyone in the god damn room understands you’re close with him and his wife, you don’t need to explain everything. Make solid points, give it some length, but sweet god man half the room is like awkwardly turned around looking through 392 flower arrangements just trying to get a look at your overly sentimental ass- wrap this shit up. Not to mention you are the only thing standing in the way of everyone getting their grub on. So hammer them with a few solid points so Aunt Mary and Uncle Freddy can lay the hammer on the steak and zip sauce headed their way.
Short, sweet, mildly sentimental, with a little bit of relatable humor and you’ll be getting business cards and phone numbers galore by the end of the night. And, if not… well, there’s an open bar you can feel good drinking from because you delivered on the one fucking job you had that night..
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