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Thread: Advice on being a Best man at a wedding.

  1. #1
    Flashaholic Acid87's Avatar
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    Default Advice on being a Best man at a wedding.

    Right guys and gals,

    I've been asked by two separate friends to be their best man at their respective weddings.
    I'm at the age now (24) where my friends are starting to get married. I've only ever been to family weddings so this will be a whole new experience.
    As some people may already know I recently lost my long time partner of 7 years after complications post surgery. Any wedding will be difficult regardless but being a best man will be especially difficult.

    I'm pretty rubbish with the whole public speaking even though I work as an outdoor pursuit instructor, makes sense doesn't it....

    So basically I'm looking for advice on all things weddings, primarily the duties of the best man of course.

    Cheers Steven

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    Flashaholic* mvyrmnd's Avatar
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    My best man has asked me to be his best man...

    For my wedding, I went to bed at a reasonable hour, he went and got drunk with another mate of mine and got home at 6am. I woke him up at 3pm to get dressed to go. Beyond a speech (which in his hungover state, he forgot to bring so had to make one up on the spot at the reception) he didn't end up doing much.

    I'm going to be a little better behaved at his... Maybe. At this stage my only duty is to make sure he shows up

    As for your speech: go with Owen Wilson's advice from Wedding Crashers. "From the heart"

  3. #3

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    Depends on how traditional they expect you to be. I've been the best man several times and got married last year at the age of 33. I expected my best man to arrange a bachelor party. For me this was low key. Basically a guys night out. We started in and had a bbq and hung out.

    The wedding day, I just expect him to make me relax. This ended up entailing little chores and errands. He also gave a toast. I paid for the tux. When I dropped it off, I had a thank you card with a new Kershaw Leek in the inside pocket. He was responsible for returning all the tuxedos as well.

    Hope that helps.

    Sent from my PG06100 using Tapatalk
    Last edited by glendayle; 12-18-2011 at 06:26 PM.

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    Default Re: Advice on being a Best man at a wedding.

    pretty much what others said.. be there "at ready".

    see that everything goes smoothly, so that he or his other malefriends dont make or get to into too much trouble. (in bachelor party and during the big day.. the ceremony and even in the after party.) you kinda need to be the "big brother" looking after and taking care of the husband so everything works out. get him ready on time and keep him calm and at ease that things are working out just fine (thats what the maid of honour and mothers worry on the bride side).

    so basically you need to stay sober enough to be in control of things. just be prepared of small mishaps. so that the happy couple dont have to worry about a thing. you get him or them everywhere in time and make sure they have all things needed (tie is right and tux is clean and the rings are available).

    like in my friends weddings.. the best man (who ever he was) knew whom could be helpful when the fuses went out of the place.. who has lights and tools.. whom is sober to drive and pick up something in last moment.. where to park the car/limo when the couple was going to get their photos taken.. whom are good at opening up a locked doors or fixing broken things.. whom he needs to babysit away from the punch and other drinks until granma has gone home.. who might cause a ruckus and see the fight coming early enough to usher them outside away from everyone else.. helps to know yourself and your friends or families strengths.. you know who to ask for help and who to watch out so they dont do anything stupid.

    about the speech, ask if they (groom/family) asks you to make one or not.. keep it short, keep it simple. talk why he is your best friend or why you are thebest man and briefly talk about your and grooms history, praise his good qualities and hers too. mention how he found the best girl for him in the world. and how rare it really is that two people are in sync. etc

    or talk to maid of honour of things the bride might want to be mentioned. (like: things how they met.. sometimes the story has different side to what you heard.. he said he "picked her up out of the crowd on the moment she arrived" and she says that she had been chasin him for weeks until he was too drunk to resist.. she picked him out not the other way around .. he just didnt know it. hah)

    this might soudn like overkill and cause too much stress of how to handle the job.. i dont mean it so. i just try to give hints of things that might go wrong so you might be prepared to handle them. if you are smooth operator, then the operation will go smoothly. there will be a momentum shift in the day when you see the stress of all participants go away and things mellow down.. thats the moment when you can also start loosening your tie and really enjoy the day..

    it will likely be hard to handle your own emotions during the day, but try your best.. if you dont feel like you are up to the task.. tell the groom about it beforehand so he knows to find someone else.. or if during the day you will get a weak moment, try to have a back-up friend there near by to take up the slack while you gather yourself back in order.

    in one of my friends weddings, the groom had 2 bestmans just because of this kind of reasoning.. other one had just married his long time girlfriend few months before, and she was diagnozed cancer just a days before wedding.. (she is doing ok now)

    anyways.. hope it all goes ok with you.
    *MaKiNG SeNSe iS NOT My PRioRiTy* *One is None, Two is One, But Butter is Better*
    *Flashaholism: DeeP DaRK HoLe im falling into, glad that I have my flashlights to light the way.*

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    Administrator Kestrel's Avatar
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    Default Re: Advice on being a Best man at a wedding.

    I don't have much to add to the above except for the following: keeping a small bottle of Tylenol in your pocket can be helpful.

    Best of luck,

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    Flashaholic Acid87's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NonSenCe
    pretty much what others said.. be there "at ready".

    see that everything goes smoothly, so that he or his other malefriends dont make or get to into too much trouble. (in bachelor party and during the big day.. the ceremony and even in the after party.) you kinda need to be the "big brother" looking after and taking care of the husband so everything works out. get him ready on time and keep him calm and at ease that things are working out just fine (thats what the maid of honour and mothers worry on the bride side).

    so basically you need to stay sober enough to be in control of things. just be prepared of small mishaps. so that the happy couple dont have to worry about a thing. you get him or them everywhere in time and make sure they have all things needed (tie is right and tux is clean and the rings are available).

    like in my friends weddings.. the best man (who ever he was) knew whom could be helpful when the fuses went out of the place.. who has lights and tools.. whom is sober to drive and pick up something in last moment.. where to park the car/limo when the couple was going to get their photos taken.. whom are good at opening up a locked doors or fixing broken things.. whom he needs to babysit away from the punch and other drinks until granma has gone home.. who might cause a ruckus and see the fight coming early enough to usher them outside away from everyone else.. helps to know yourself and your friends or families strengths.. you know who to ask for help and who to watch out so they dont do anything stupid.

    about the speech, ask if they (groom/family) asks you to make one or not.. keep it short, keep it simple. talk why he is your best friend or why you are thebest man and briefly talk about your and grooms history, praise his good qualities and hers too. mention how he found the best girl for him in the world. and how rare it really is that two people are in sync. etc

    or talk to maid of honour of things the bride might want to be mentioned. (like: things how they met.. sometimes the story has different side to what you heard.. he said he "picked her up out of the crowd on the moment she arrived" and she says that she had been chasin him for weeks until he was too drunk to resist.. she picked him out not the other way around .. he just didnt know it. hah)

    this might soudn like overkill and cause too much stress of how to handle the job.. i dont mean it so. i just try to give hints of things that might go wrong so you might be prepared to handle them. if you are smooth operator, then the operation will go smoothly. there will be a momentum shift in the day when you see the stress of all participants go away and things mellow down.. thats the moment when you can also start loosening your tie and really enjoy the day..

    it will likely be hard to handle your own emotions during the day, but try your best.. if you dont feel like you are up to the task.. tell the groom about it beforehand so he knows to find someone else.. or if during the day you will get a weak moment, try to have a back-up friend there near by to take up the slack while you gather yourself back in order.

    in one of my friends weddings, the groom had 2 bestmans just because of this kind of reasoning.. other one had just married his long time girlfriend few months before, and she was diagnozed cancer just a days before wedding.. (she is doing ok now)

    anyways.. hope it all goes ok with you.
    Cheers nonsence,

    I feel like I've just read the SAS survival guide for being a best man. It has given a clearer image of what I'll have to do on the day. Sounds like I'll have to have a sit down with the groom and talk over the speech as soon as possible just to make sure I don't say the wrong things.
    I'm very close to the grooms brother and obviously he knows what's just happened in my life so he will be there for me on the day should I get a bit down. On saying that it would be selfish to ruin their day with me being all sad and mopey, it's supposed to be a happy celebration.

    The weddings are a wee while away at the minute but you know what they say about preparation.

    Piss poor planning leads to piss poor performance.

    Also Kestrel,

    Tylenol? Any particular reason.....?

  7. #7

    Default Re: Advice on being a Best man at a wedding.

    My experience as a best man was exactly like glendayle's best man: I did a few chores/errands on the wedding day, kept track of some payments/tips, delivered the toast and returned the tuxes afterwards.

    Enjoy the experience - I spent some time preparing for the toast (which was the hardest part for me) and received a number of compliments on it.

    Good luck.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Advice on being a Best man at a wedding.

    acid.. hah. thanks and you are welcome.

    about them pills.. those should be in persons edc anyways. mini-fak kit. bandages for small nicks, alcohol wipe to clean the nick, tylenol/ibuprofen for painkillers and headaches.. (some might have hangovers or get stress migraine/headache..). antihistamine for allergic reacton of flowers or something. some pills to sooth the stomach if the stress makes it rumble. all fit inside small tin box like altoids or inside an old filmcanister..

    also in that small kit you could have 3-4 safetypins (if someone gets a waldrobe malfunction you can be the superstar) maybe even needle and thread (white and black) for those buttons that may fly off.

    chokolate bar or couple hard sugar candies (for quick energy if blood sugar goes down on someone or yourself while waiting the food or drinks to roll,it is a long day and people get cranky witl low sugar levels.. kids and adults.. you beeing a sugar daddy might make someones day much better)

    then bubble gum and maybe some cigarettes (if the groom or bride smokes or used to smoke.. you can offer them one to keep them calm, also a lighter is a must even if you dont take the cigarettes) and some minty fresh tic-tac pills to hide the smoking.

    bubblegum and candies are good way to spend few anxious minutes waiting for something to happen or someone to come.. gives hands and mouth something to do and fiddle with for a while.

    and also.. have a small pack of tissues for the teary eyes. (and a hankie or two for youserself)
    *MaKiNG SeNSe iS NOT My PRioRiTy* *One is None, Two is One, But Butter is Better*
    *Flashaholism: DeeP DaRK HoLe im falling into, glad that I have my flashlights to light the way.*

  9. #9
    Flashaholic Acid87's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NonSenCe
    acid.. hah. thanks and you are welcome.

    about them pills.. those should be in persons edc anyways. mini-fak kit. bandages for small nicks, alcohol wipe to clean the nick, tylenol/ibuprofen for painkillers and headaches.. (some might have hangovers or get stress migraine/headache..). antihistamine for allergic reacton of flowers or something. some pills to sooth the stomach if the stress makes it rumble. all fit inside small tin box like altoids or inside an old filmcanister..

    also in that small kit you could have 3-4 safetypins (if someone gets a waldrobe malfunction you can be the superstar) maybe even needle and thread (white and black) for those buttons that may fly off.

    chokolate bar or couple hard sugar candies (for quick energy if blood sugar goes down on someone or yourself while waiting the food or drinks to roll,it is a long day and people get cranky witl low sugar levels.. kids and adults.. you beeing a sugar daddy might make someones day much better)

    then bubble gum and maybe some cigarettes (if the groom or bride smokes or used to smoke.. you can offer them one to keep them calm, also a lighter is a must even if you dont take the cigarettes) and some minty fresh tic-tac pills to hide the smoking.

    bubblegum and candies are good way to spend few anxious minutes waiting for something to happen or someone to come.. gives hands and mouth something to do and fiddle with for a while.

    and also.. have a small pack of tissues for the teary eyes. (and a hankie or two for youserself)
    These are some things I have in my EDC anyways. The only problem I have is..... I'll be wearing a kilt. As you can imagine there isn't many places to put some things I.e. EDC pouches etc. I'll maybe take some pills though small enough to fit in a pocket though. Cheers for the advice though guys.

    Still stressing over the speech though. No idea what to say without sounding too corny.

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    Default Re: Advice on being a Best man at a wedding.

    sounding corny or mushy. it is kinda expected. hah.

    oh a kilt. then its just matter of having a bag nearby where they are stashed close enough so you have quick access to them. or have a friend carry a pouch for you.

    but i thought that the kilt normally has that hairy bag/purse in front too.. there you could put things like flashlights and edcstuff? -not sure tho, i just thought that it is a bag never seen one "live". and i think i saw once in tv that they had a knife and holster in the waist too? no need for folding knife then. its traditional dress and it belongs to it so the police shouldnt have an issue with one either..
    *MaKiNG SeNSe iS NOT My PRioRiTy* *One is None, Two is One, But Butter is Better*
    *Flashaholism: DeeP DaRK HoLe im falling into, glad that I have my flashlights to light the way.*

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    Default Re: Advice on being a Best man at a wedding.

    Quote Originally Posted by Acid87 View Post
    Still stressing over the speech though. No idea what to say without sounding too corny.
    All you need to do is tell the audience about why the groom is your friend, with a few stories about things you used to get up to together, and why you like him. A lot of people will expect to hear tales of scandalous/drunk/bad behavior, but AVOID that type of story, however much you may be tempted or egged on by others. Both you and the groom will gain a lot more respect if you refrain from causing embarrassment. By all means tell a few jokes, but again, keep them CLEAN. Gentle humor, rather than vulgarity, will work a lot better.

    Write your entire speech down, word for word, and practice reading it out aloud. Reading it out will show up defects, and as you make corrections you'll gain confidence. Also, unless you practice reading it aloud, you won't have any idea of how long it will take, which normally means it will be too long. ~800 words should be plenty long enough. When you are happy with it, practice it on your mother (or father/other senior relative). If they approve (rather than sitting there silent and stony-faced) that means you've got it just about right.
    Resistance is futile...

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    Flashaholic Acid87's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NonSenCe
    sounding corny or mushy. it is kinda expected. hah.

    oh a kilt. then its just matter of having a bag nearby where they are stashed close enough so you have quick access to them. or have a friend carry a pouch for you.

    but i thought that the kilt normally has that hairy bag/purse in front too.. there you could put things like flashlights and edcstuff? -not sure tho, i just thought that it is a bag never seen one "live". and i think i saw once in tv that they had a knife and holster in the waist too? no need for folding knife then. its traditional dress and it belongs to it so the police shouldnt have an issue with one either..
    It's called a sporran and yes it is a pouch for EDC stuff. Course I'll have a light with me. The knife is called a sgian dubh which is a small single edged blade worn in the sock. It is legal to carry in the uk due to it being part of traditional dress. Also the sporran is not a bloody purse! Come over here and say that....

    Quote Originally Posted by DM51
    All you need to do is tell the audience about why the groom is your friend, with a few stories about things you used to get up to together, and why you like him. A lot of people will expect to hear tales of scandalous/drunk/bad behavior, but AVOID that type of story, however much you may be tempted or egged on by others. Both you and the groom will gain a lot more respect if you refrain from causing embarrassment. By all means tell a few jokes, but again, keep them CLEAN. Gentle humor, rather than vulgarity, will work a lot better.

    Write your entire speech down, word for word, and practice reading it out aloud. Reading it out will show up defects, and as you make corrections you'll gain confidence. Also, unless you practice reading it aloud, you won't have any idea of how long it will take, which normally means it will be too long. ~800 words should be plenty long enough. When you are happy with it, practice it on your mother (or father/other senior relative). If they approve (rather than sitting there silent and stony-faced) that means you've got it just about right.
    I shall do this and maybe start sooner rather than later. I'll maybe post a short draft here too for any feedback. Although obviously not knowing me or the groom will be a tad difficult the ideas are there.

    Again guys cheers for the advice.
    Steven the shy Scotsman.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Advice on being a Best man at a wedding.

    purse is a purse.. especially if a guy wears a skirt.. ermm kilt.. ROFL.

    oh i remembered right that those thingys are a purse and there can be a knife. (once again tv is proven to be a good teacher! haha) -didnt know their names and got the location of knife wrong.. but remember seeing one used to do something useful.

    but yeah.. before people put pockets into their clothes everyone carried a purse to hold their belongings in.. tinder, utensils, lunch. maybe thats why fannypacks feel so normal to many of us.. it is memories of past lives and feels natural (and useful). hahah.
    *MaKiNG SeNSe iS NOT My PRioRiTy* *One is None, Two is One, But Butter is Better*
    *Flashaholism: DeeP DaRK HoLe im falling into, glad that I have my flashlights to light the way.*

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