I love being a wedding speech writer, as I have the opportunity to meet some really fascinating people, hear their life stories and create something for them that will not only be a great success on the day, but enjoyed for many years to come. The only problem with weddings is that, much like the healthcare industry, everyone is an expert. Around the world, doctors everywhere have to contend with the fact that, thanks to Google, their medical degrees count for very little, and if you are a housewife, shop assistant, banker or plumber, you probably know as much about deep vein thrombosis as a fully qualified medical professional.
Of course, that's nonsense. The only thing that Google has been responsible for is to give the general public a modicum of knowledge that can only be described as dangerous. My daughter once cried herself to sleep think she had months to live with ear cancer, when in fact she just needed to improve her washing technique. And it's very much the same with weddings, just without the life or death element. Many people think they understand the inner machinations of wedding speeches, when they don't, and as long as our paths don't cross, then that's perfectly fine. However, the other day I was reading what some self appointed expert claimed to be were a few great ideas for the ultimate groom speech. They were so horrifically bad, that if you were to try any of them, the least you could expect would be a lifetime's worth of mental health issues.
So, the writer in question suggested rapping the speech. I was an early exponent of East Coast hip hop back in the early 80's, so my opinion isn't forged from a position of ignorance, just incredulity. Can you imagine anything more humiliating, than a guy who's everyday role is in IT support, attempting an 8 minute rap about, family, friends, and the love of his love? I have to say that the recent Amazon Alexa error, where the speaker asked to child to stick her fingers in a socket, was a lot more sensible than this. But it gets worse...
The writer then suggested if you're too scared to make the speech, writing it on blackboards and spreading them around the room would be a good idea. Sorry, but if you can't stand up and tell a few people what today means to you, and what your wife means to you, you should probably knock the whole thing on the head. the idea that you should turn it into some educational workshop is laughable. Asking people to listen to you is hard enough, expecting them to read stuff when there's booze and good times to be had, just isn't going to happen. Not content with making a complete idiot of herself, she then suggests that you could always ask others to complete your speech, instead of you - i.e. construct a video montage of family and friends, rather than you speaking. This is your opportunity to say really important, meaningful things about family and friends; why on Earth would you ask others to do that? It doesn't make the slightest bit of sense, and is coming from someone who is clearly plucking things out of the air, or maybe even more personal spaces. Determined to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, it's then suggested that you could make the whole thing a musical mash up. This is a modern over arching term, that simply means squashing everything together to the sound of music. You're committing your life to someone, and whilst I love funny best man speeches, this is the kind of thing you dream up for the end of a sixth form play. Apart from anything, all these ideas require an awful lot of work, which requires time, and the one thing no groom has is time. The fact that you'd be using all of this time and effort just to make yourself look like a complete knob, is an unbearable irony. There were a few other gems, but by that point my body had started going into anaphylactic shock.
So, be careful where you're getting your advice from My advice is just avoid any advice that's going to lead to some form of permanent PTSD.