Dr. Beeper: I thought you'd be the man to beat this year.
Ty Webb: I guess you'll just have to keep beating yourself.”Caddyshack”
With the photos complete, we headed back to the clubhouse for the reception. We had about 100 people coming, and the wife and I met them one by one at the door as they entered. Our plan for the evening was to get all the speeches and formal stuff out of the way extremely quickly so we could hit the bar. I had been selected by the wife to make the speeches for us, so I had to stay off the booze a little so as to not totally make a fool out of myself too early. There was another small problem – neither I nor the best man had written our speeches yet. We had planned to write them the night before at the pub on the back of some coasters, but I had failed to make it out so it never materialised.
After the emcee made the initial address and we got dinner underway, I asked to borrow his speech and I started writing mine in point form on the back of it. I had a few things I wanted to bring up during my speech, I just wrote down the points to keep me going in the right direction.
The speeches finally came around, and all went very well. Firstly the father of the bride, who was extremely nervous but got through it without any problems. Then my dad, who has a morbid love of microphones and often over-estimates the comedic value of his own jokes. But tonight he was on his game, and did a brilliant job. Unfortuantly, about half way through the speech all the bridesmaids had noticed the giant spider perched high on the wall behind them. The groomsmen had seen it when they sat down but wisely chose to say nothing. Now they had seen it, nothing could continue until it was removed.
They tried opening the door and shooing it out, but surprisingly that didn’t work. The spider moved very quickly and disappeared under the table. There was little chance these girls were sitting down after that – and it disappeared nearest to the bride. Amazingly she showed great resolve and sat there confident that the spider would do no harm (even though it wasn’t poisonous, it was maybe 2 inches in size so big enough for the girls to be worried about I guess.)
The best man gave his speech and I have to say I was very impressed. The maid of honour said to him as he went back to his seat “Oh that was so beautiful” to which both my brother immediately said to the best man “You are so in my friend”, which is a quote from the Kiwi film “Stickmen”. If he wasn’t yet, then he surely would be in a few moments.
My speech went through without a problem and then we were on to the cutting of the cake. When the bride stood up and moved over to the cake, it was revealed that the spider had rested quite comfortably on the bottom of her dress. When everyone saw this (when she was standing near the cake, with several people in front of her holding cameras) I think the spider instinctively knew it was time to get out of dodge. Then, with super hero like speed, the best man leaped out from behind the bridal table and with one deadly stamp extinguished the spider with extreme prejudice. At once, all the cameras went to the floor to take photos of the fallen arachnid. The maid of honour said to him “You know you could have any girl in the room now” and by that she meant “You know you could have me now.”
With the formalities out of the way, we got down to the drinking and partying segment of the night. All my friends were keen to meet one of the brides nieces (which I guess is kind of my niece now too), who was only 5. The reason they wanted to meet her was because they were looking at all the table settings and name plates at each seat, and they were amazed that they was a seat for “Blayde”, and they thought it was so awesome that someone would name their kid “Blayde”. She and her sister were little bundles of energy too, they were dancing the entire night non-stop just about. Before long, they started a drinking game for whenever Blayde fell down, and it was unbelievable how much fun you can have with a beer in one hand and a 5 year old running around on a slippery dance floor.
One of the young ladies at the even dared a groomsmen to do a streak across the first tee – but wouldn’t it be better if all the groomsmen did it? She asked me if I thought they would, and I said the only tough nut to crack would be my little brother. So she went to “sweet talk” him, but he agreed to it in about 3 seconds and it was on for later in the night (if they still remember it then).
At this time, the video guy was packing up his near, and he overheard the plans. He said if they wanted to do it now, he would film it.
And then it was on.
The reception was up on the first floor, so the boys all dis-robed down stairs underneath the balcony. My little brother’s female friend (not in that way, apparently) went down stairs to find where he was. She didn’t know what was going on but found out quick enough and I guess she was mature enough to stay down there while it all happened.
As the word spread around the party, a large portion moved to the balcony to witness the event. Without much fanfare, off they went streaking bare assed across the first tee and into the darkness with their suits in one hand and shoes in the other.
Not that I could see, but I’m told after they were out of sight, the video guy panned back to where they had come from, and there was my little brother’s female friend – sitting with one leg crossed over the other, happily smoking a cigarette and unaware that she was now on camera. It should make for quite a good scene.
The rest of the night was drinks and giggles, and very enjoyable. At somebodies request, the DJ played “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond. Ever since I saw this comedy trio do a version of the song, I can not hear it without participating. It really is fun, you should give it a try next time you here the song. Basically, all you do is murmur or hum the words until you get to the chorus and then after Neil belts out “Sweeeeeet Caro-line” and the absolute top of your lungs, and with matching pounding fist you yell “BOM BOM BOM” in time with the three beats. After 2 or 14 beers, you get a good laugh out of it.
Eventually the time rolled around to throw the bouquet, and there were some very nervous groomsmen in the room. It looks like their significant others were nervous too, because when the bride through her flowers, the group parted like the red sea. One of the younger girls grabbed it, knowing only that they could keep the flowers if they got them.
We left through an archway of all our friends, and that is as far as I will tell for the night. Everybody else partied on and then hit the town. The following day I would hear a few stories about how they couldn’t get into the only club in town, and then got let in the side door of another pub that was hosting a gay and lesbian fancy dress party. I guess all these visitors to the town would leave quite jaded. They eventually went back to the best mans house, where they now have a basement cellar that resembles a bomb shelter. Man, was that an awesome place to drink! I obviously wasn’t there that night, but the next night we ended up back there and it was sufficiently perfect.
After all his efforts at the reception, the best man was indeed on deck with the maid of honour. Sadly for her, I guess he just wasn’t that interested as he made the choice between hooking up and going to sleep. This was good ribbing material for the rest of the trip.
My next post would be the final chapter of Heafy Gets Married, as we head to the recovery party the following day and then the long drive home.