I was finally successful in my begging and pleading with The Husband, and he has graciously relented to the publishing of the speech he gave at Younger Son's and His B'shert's recent nuptials. His reticence has been based mostly on the fact that he was concerned it would lose impact and import if it is merely read as opposed to actually witnessing the exceptional presentation he gave that evening. I am absolutely convinced that he has nothing to worry about on this account, and that considering the deals I had to make with devil in order for him to agree (you really shouldn't ask for the details on a family-style blog), I know that you will also nod your heads in assent. (This is the part where you all obediently nod your heads vigourously.) So, here it is. A first for this blog. A guest post from The Husband. And....it conveniently strips another day of NaBloPoMo off of the calendar.
￼Wedding Speech (From the Father of the Groom)
I know what most of you are thinking right now. The answer is... about five minutes. I've been to a lot of weddings in the last year, and despite the heartfelt and passionate nature of all the speeches I've heard, I can't recall a single detail about any of them, so I take great comfort in the fact that none of you will remember this either.
I wasn’t sure where to start when preparing this speech, so I consulted father-of-the-groom-speeches.com. I found there a template for a father-of-the-groom speech that I thought I would follow. In other words, How To Write a Speech in Seven Easy Steps. So here we go.
Step 1: “Start with an inspirational quote, or a short poem”. Upon proofreading this speech, Dawn vetoed my poem. Some nonsense about off-colour limericks not being wedding appropriate. So, I decided to go with an inspirational quote from one of our favourites, Ogden Nash:
“To keep your marriage brimming,
With love in the loving cup,
Whenever you're wrong, admit it;
Whenever you're right, shut up.”
￼Step 2: Next on the father-of-the-groom speech template is welcoming guests. Dawn and I are so incredibly honoured by your presence here tonight. Today is truly momentous, but it is being able to share it with all of you, our friends and family, old and new, that makes it extraordinary. So many of you have travelled great distances in order to be here, and that is a testament as to how important K and L are to you. For that we are grateful and we thank-you all for celebrating with us. At the same time, we can’t help but think of cherished loved ones who are absent this evening. We miss Aunty Marlene deeply and know how much she was looking forward to this day. We are terribly sad that Zaidy Milton is not well enough to be here, but we know that he is thinking of us tonight.
￼Step 3: The template tells me that it is now mandatory to welcome the bride to the family. This seems a little redundant. L, you are so outgoing, friendly and caring that you fit right into our family, immediate and extended, very quickly. No easy task, given our substantial motley crew. Clearly family is very important to you. We can hardly remember when you were not “one of us”. L, there is no doubt that all that you are and all that you have become is because of your roots. We are so privileged to be able to call John, Robin and Josh family.
We know how hard it was for you to leave home and move north of the border. Canada might not have all of the qualities of the civilized world that you are accustomed to in Aurora, Ohio, but we’re trying. We have Panera, DSW, and, if you give it a chance, Target. Nordstrom is coming next year, and maybe someday DQ will offer chocolate soft serve. Don’t worry about mastering kilometres, celsius, litres and kilograms. We’re bilingual and will understand you when you talk miles, fahrenheit, gallons and pounds. We don’t have a provincial college that we’re all supporters of, but we are determined to make you feel at home, so I want to announce that, henceforth, our family will adopt the Buckeyes as our official team.
￼Step 4: It says here that I “must compliment the bride”. Now, anyone that knows me will understand, I don’t like being told I must do something. Its pretty much a foolproof way of ensuring that I won’t do it. So, L, you’ll understand that what I am about to say is not because I’m being forced to. You really look so beautiful tonight. You should be so very proud of all the work you did in making this celebration happen beyond just saying “yes” to K. You are gregarious, accomplished, strong-minded, independent, and intuitive. And, on top of all of that, we think your taste in men is impeccable.
Step 5: The instructions are very explicit. I quote: “Congratulate son for choosing such a lovely wife, but be careful not to exaggerate with the compliments. You must be sincere and tell only what you really think, if that doesn’t offend anyone, of course. So, in your father of the groom toast you shouldn’t say what others want to hear from you, if you really don’t feel that way. Because, if you lie, the guests will figure out and you will make a bad impression.” Okay, I’ll be sincere and I hope I won’t offend anyone. K, we want to congratulate you for choosing such a lovely wife! No, really. I sincerely, sincerely, sincerely believe you have found a truly lovely partner. Congratulations. Sincerely.
￼Step 6: This is the part of the speech where I’m instructed to tell you all about my son. Anybody who knows K will confirm that he is highly intelligent, creative, fun-loving, and sensitive. I could go on and on about his love of music, movies, theatre, and Maple Leafs hockey. He is a dedicated and loyal friend and a caring and compassionate brother, son and grandson. You know we love you dearly, K, but truly the best word to describe you is....GEEK! Really.... a true fanboy! We always knew that when something excited K he would talk increasingly faster, louder, and ad-nauseum about whatever had caught his interest. He still does. To see this for yourself, just ask Kyle about Batman, Superman, Marvel Comics, DC Comics, Video Games, Pokemon, Superhero movies, the new TV season, Super Mario, Nintendo, XBox, PlayStation, or the latest release of Unix, iOS, or OSX, or the latest iPhone, iPad, or MacBook. He is our very own, Leonard Hofstadter. L, is it true that K is taking you to Comic-Con for your honeymoon?
￼Step 7: The final stage of a father-of-the-groom speech is to give some advice for married life. It is suggested that I draw upon my own experience, but that I be careful to not offend anyone, especially my wife. (Don’t look so worried, Dawn.) Well, I’m sure you’ve heard all sorts of marriage advice, both serious and funny. There are no shortage of jokes about marriage and a myriad of relationship self- help books published. Everyone has their own advice and you’ll find a lot of conflicting ideas. But we do have some serious advice for you that has served us well for almost thirty years. Mom and I firmly believe that you shouldn’t take anyone’s marriage advice, including ours. This marriage is your’s and L’s. You have to find what works for you and what makes the two of you happy. Keep on talking, keep on loving, keep on enjoying. The rest will take care of itself. We love you both. Mazel Tov!!