Here’s an illustration of how to pep up your best man’s speech by turning it into a witty day in the life of piece…
‘Without a shadow of a doubt, this is the most nerve‐wracking thing I have ever done. But at the same time it is a great honour to have been picked by Ken [the groom] as his best man. When he phoned to let me know, I nearly choked with surprise and I had a huge lump in my throat. That’ll teach me to talk on the phone when I’m eating a kebab.
‘Anyway, I thought long and hard about what I wanted to say in this speech. Obviously, Karen [the bride] has known Ken for many years. She’s seen his career flourish, his hair fall out and his paunch widen.
‘However, I realised that it’s my duty to let Karen know what Ken was like BEFORE she met him. Obviously, since he met his beloved wife‐to‐be, Ken has been on his best behaviour. But I can assure that hasn’t always been the case.
‘Ken and I have been best friends since primary school, so I have been witness to some of Ken’s finer moments. I’ve also, of course, been witness to some of his less than fine moments. And, naturally, it’s those moments that I feel I should tell Karen about ‐‐ in front of just about everyone Ken cares about.
‘How best to catalogue such a huge number of embarrassing moments? Well, I thought I would put them together on a CV to support Ken’s application for the job of Karen’s husband. OK, so he’s already landed the job — but just bear with me…
‘Let’s start with his qualifications, shall we? An impressive ten O levels, three A levels and a second class honours degree in Sports Science from Lancaster. Ken also holds various gymnastics badges, seventeen merit badges (including needlework!) from Scouts, and a Winner’s Certificate — from our Club 18-30 holiday to Santa Ponsa, Majorca — in the Drink-As-Much-Sangria-As-You-Can-Before-Passing-Out contest, 1993.
‘Let us look now in more detail at Ken’s glittering academic career.
‘1981-1983: Busy Bee nursery school. [mimicking the groom’s voice] “I spent three years honing my excellent communication skills at this prestigious school, where my love for drama flourished. I appeared in several productions, playing Lead Toadstool, Second Sheep and Mr Frog, before a controversial starring role as Pontius Pilate in the school nativity.”
‘1983-1989: Clifton Manor primary school. “In a distinguished career at Clifton I became one of the most popular boys in the school. This was because, for several years, I conned my mum into giving me dinner money when, in fact, we were given lunch at the school. I used this money to build up a small stock of sweets, comics and pictures of Page 3 models which formed the basis of a highly successful black market operation run from behind the athletics equipment hut.
‘1989-1994: Stoneybrook secondary school. “As well as a successful record in both O and A levels at Stoneybrook, I was also the first student to dye my hair orange for mufti day and the only student to receive a suspension for drinking cider in the language labs. In the sporting arena, I excelled in the area of cross-country, holding the school record for nearly two years. Unfortunately, the title was taken away from me in a rather ignominious fashion. My games master realised that the time I had recorded was, in fact, close to the world record for 5000metres. I had, of course, hidden in a bush for the duration of the race, reappearing — complete with muddy legs and flushed cheeks — only a few minutes later to jog home. My appeal, lodged with the International Athletics Federation in 1992, is pending.”
‘1995-1999: Lancaster University. “While at college, I was an active member of the student body while at college. I joined the Real Ale society, the Wine society and the Soul, Funk & Reggae society, and was a regular attendee of all the social events organised by each. I also gained several honours during my time here. I am still the only Sports Science student ever to be reprimanded for poor attendance in lectures, having only managed four in six terms. I held the Yard of Ale record for three terms and am still, to my knowledge, the only student to have run up a four-figure overdraft with three of the five major high street banks.
’19 Mar, 2000 (the day I met Karen) — present: “I am now enjoying the best time of my life, and continue to be the luckiest man alive since meeting the love of my life.
‘Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the groom and his wonderful, beautiful bride.’