At last, you too can give a very funny best man speech like a pro even if you are not a funny person! Using the same ideas, tips, guidelines, and examples…accomplished toastmasters use to bring down their audience
Ready? Let’s go on.
Alex and Dan had been best friends since childhood.
From chasing girls to drinking their head off to gambling at a local casino, they had gained fame locally for being very close pals.
They had completed their college education ten years ago, and both had become successful and responsible adults.
Dan was promoted to vice president of the manufacturing division of a pharmaceutical company after doing well on the job for seven years. Alex was chief executive of a construction firm he owned. However, neither of them was married.
After some time, Alex met Stella and everything was set for their wedding after they had dated for two years. Dan was asked by his friend to be the best man and he gladly accepted that honorable responsibility.
He loved the duties of being one but he hated being in the public eye, so when he found out that he had to give a speech, he got so nervous like a cockroach in a hen coop.
He had never spoken before a large group of people and his new assignment seemed very intimidating. The last time he addressed some people at a meeting was eight years ago, and that made him sweat so much
However, he talked with a friend who had a standing ovation for giving a humorous best man speech to learn the tricks of the game. After that brief encounter, he poured his heart and mind into writing what he felt was a hilarious best man speech.
On his friend’s wedding day, he made fun of his friend and even made reference to a time spent in chasing girls and their drinking sprees. As you can imagine, those unsavory comments didn’t go down well with his friend and the guest
But, who are we to blame Dan? He wasn’t simply skilled at speaking before a crowd.
I am sure, like Dan, you too want to make a funny wedding speech for your brother or friend that will stay in the minds of the wedding guests for a very long time.
But, did you know that how you go about it will go a long way to determine whether your words will make the wedding guests happy or bored?
Don’t worry if you are not a great speaker or even horrible at putting your thoughts and ideas together because I am going to show you time-tested tips and examples that will you come up with a great best man speech for your friend or brother.
Before we do, please take note of this very carefully as it will decide what you should say and what you shouldn’t at his wedding.
Start With This And End With It
If you want your performance to go down well, you need to believe in what you are going to say or do else nothing can really work for you. To be clear, you need to believe in yourself.
Whatever you wish for in life depends a great deal on your own set of beliefs. You cannot succeed if all you see around you is doubt and despair.
I know you are probably wondering if you are going to excel because your mind has relayed a picture of a past incident where you panicked when you were asked to say a few words before a group of people.
Don’t let that bog you down! You are the product of your imagination, so believe you can and you will be a step away from delivering your toast with poise and flair.
Don’t Leave It Till The Last Minute
This isn’t a university assignment that you forget about and hurriedly write the night before the submission date. While you may get a decent grade in school, writing a best man speech is a whole different ball game though.
You aren’t just the ring safeguarder or the morale booster. Your role is to be your best friend’s reliable right-hand man, and this speech falls under that category as well.
Therefore, start well in advance, or else you might find yourself scrambling to finish it in time (with your thoughts scrambled by the time you finish it).
This speech is going to be your version of a heartfelt and humorous send-off to your best friend, so naturally, it does occupy quite an important part in the occasion’s itinerary.
A unique best man speech doesn’t need to be delivered with the aplomb of an actor or actress accepting an Oscar - as long as it is sweet, sincere, and special, you’re going to be a hit (with your best friend or brothers and of course, the ladies).
What’s worse than a best man who thinks he can wing his speech? A best man who shows up shitfaced and slurs through it. We know and understand that public speaking can be nerve-wracking, but you throwing back the champagne is just going to wreck things.
So do try to avoid getting tipsy and end the night on a celebratory note instead.
Leave The Past In The Past
Picture this - everyone’s having a good time, drinking, eating, and laughing at your jokes.
But then, the incident comes up - awkward glances are exchanged, tiny coughs fill the room, and you can almost hear the sound of crickets. If there is a surefire way to bring down the mood, it’s mentioning what should not be mentioned.
At any cost, please leave out the drunk bachelor trip shenanigans (don’t give your best friend’s Uncle Muriel a coronary), definitely avoid mentions of wild parties, and do not breathe a word about a past relationship.
Don’t Drone On
A good speech is short and sweet. It shouldn’t be a 25-page novel that makes the audience wish they’d never stepped foot into that room. Choose anecdotes that are appropriate, stories that are easy to explain, share fond memories of your best friend or brother, and wind it up within 5 minutes.
If you do, you will be well on your way to being heralded as the groom’s ‘witty and wickedly-funny’ best friend in no time at all.
Now, let’s look at how to get ideas for the content of your presentation. Principally, there are two ways. From best man speech videos and well-written examples.
Let’s watch some video clips you can learn from and adapt to writing the structure of your speech.
Action Tip: Get a piece of paper or a sheet and pen and write down thoughts and phrases you would like to incorporate into your storyline as you watch these short clips.
I hope you enjoyed watching them and have learned a thing or two from both?
So without further ado, let’s crank up the charm, shall we?
Talking about charm, below is a best man speech example for a friend.
If you are his brother, then, you may scroll down the page for a speech template from a brother to the groom and bride.
P.S Both samples can help you know what to say and what not to say. So, my advice is to read the two and jot down ideas that you think will help you write yours quickly.
First, here’s an example for your friend. I found this at www.hitched.co.uk and I am glad to share it with you because it perfectly captures the essence of what the writing process is all about.
“Good afternoon everyone – for those of you that don’t know me, my name’s Scott and after all these years it’s nice that Steve has finally admitted that I’m the best man!
I hope you’ve all had a lovely time so far and continue to have a fantastic time as the day and evening goes by – I’d also like to apologize in advance if I, in any way, ruin that in the next five minutes.
Talking of five minutes, it’s often said that the best man’s speech is the worst five minutes of the groom’s life – I’m also told (by reliable sources) that the worst five minutes of Laura’s life comes later on when all the guests have gone home!
I know from personal experience that it’s a difficult task choosing a best man, I’m still not sure about my choice four years on eh Steve?!
But with Steve, like most things in life, it became more difficult as time went on – his first choice was his funniest friend but unfortunately, he said no, so then he thought he’d choose his cleverest friend but again, unfortunately, the offer was declined.
At the third attempt he turned to his most handsome friend but sadly it was a no yet again and at this point, as you can imagine Steve was getting pretty desperate – that’s when my phone rang!
And, to be honest, hearing Steve’s quivering little voice on the phone I decided I couldn’t possibly turn him down for the fourth time!
As part of my job today I get the task of saying a few words about today’s main man – I can honestly say that he’s one of the most handsome, most funny men you’ll ever meet and I’m proud to call him my friend.
So if you if bump into him today – where’s Lloyd? Today is his birthday so please buy him a drink – happy birthday Lloyd!
Now, I was asked by Steve and Laura to be careful with any content that may be a little risqué and, in particular, remove any innuendos – so I just wanted to reassure you both that I’ve been through it carefully and vetted it but if I do come across anything I’ve missed I’ll whip it out as quickly as I can!
In all seriousness I’ve known Steve now for around 18 years since I interviewed him for a job as a 16/17-year-old – he turned up late, with the very popular ‘curtain’ hairstyle, proudly wearing his Arsenal tie and he somehow managed to convince me that I’d found a gem.
I’d like to point out that several times over the first few years I was given the opportunity by the HR department to get rid of him, but somehow those eyes were still convincing me otherwise.
Now because most of the stories I could tell about Steve over the years would no doubt incriminate myself, again I decided to be careful about what I would say – so I definitely won’t be telling you about the times he used his ‘one phone call’ to tell me he couldn’t make it to work, I definitely won’t be telling you about his love of urinating in public places when under the influence (in particular on my neighbour’s car!) and I definitely won’t tell you about the time I got a call from head office to say that Steve had some charges for extras against his room whilst away on a training course – he swore blind, as he does when under pressure, that it wasn’t for him.
So you can tell by looking at Steve that not a lot has changed really – although unlike most people he’s actually lost weight over the years I’ve known him, quite a lot to lose at one point as I recall Steve?!
And over those years I think it’s fair to say we’ve got into a few scrapes and one way or another we’ve always been there for each other when things have been tough – I’m proud to call you my friend and long may it continue!
Now, despite what I said before things have definitely changed for him since he got together with Laura 5 years ago, particularly over the last 18 months when their daughter came along – he’s a brilliant Dad and I’m sure that he’ll be a brilliant husband too!
I’m also impressed that he’s chosen to whisk Laura away on honeymoon in the UK – North Wales isn’t it Steve?…oh ok, I obviously got confused when he said he was going to Bangor for two weeks after the wedding!
I could honestly stand here and take the mick out of Steve all day long but I could definitely do with a beer now – although I do just want to impart one last bit of wisdom on you Steve… so, if Laura could just place her hand on the table, palm down… etc.
How does that feel Steve? I can personally guarantee you that will be the last time you ever have the upper hand so make the most of it while you can!
On behalf of the bridesmaids, Claire and Isla, I would like to thank Steve & Laura for asking us to be a part of your special day – I genuinely hope, and I know that you will be very happy together, please look after him Laura because he struggles to look after himself at times!
So if I could ask you all to join me in a toast – TO THE HAPPY COUPLE, THE BRIDE AND GROOM, STEVE AND LAURA!!”
Now, here’s another one for a brother. I have broken this example down so you can get an idea of what went into writing it and I hope it will help you come up with yours without breaking a sweat.
This is it. I found this at www.hitched.co.uk and I am glad to share it with you because it perfectly captures the essence of what the writing process is all about.
“For those who don’t know me, my name is Graham and I’m today’s best brother. I say best brother as there’s less competition in that category than in the best man competition.
So if you like Craig’s speech better, then at least I still win something.
The last time I gave a speech at a joint event with my brother was at our 18th and 21st birthday party.
A good portion of the people here were at that event and you’ll be glad to know my speech uses ‘fabulous’ a lot less this time around.
Stuart and Demi, it’s an honour to stand up here today as one of the best men. I’m delighted for you both and I’m so glad we can celebrate with friends and family who have travelled from around the country. They’re all here to wish you well (and can’t wait for their free food and drink).
Let me tell you a bit about growing up with Stuart - we met in the 90s, back in a time where it was fine to dress your children in popper tracksuit bottoms. Stuart managed to pull his off as he was certainly the more athletic between us, whereas my bright yellow pair forever cemented me as our version of Augustus Gloop.
We had a great childhood and I was delighted to have a brother. We got on well - I used to get up early in the morning to let him out of his cot. I didn’t need to do this for long as he soon learned to get himself out and cause my parents no end of grief when he learned to walk. Unfortunately, their trick of sticking me in front of a TV with chocolate didn’t work so well on Stuart.
All the ornaments had to be hidden. Fast forward a couple of years and we’d be out playing in the streets having water fights and coming to the door absolutely drenched. We both also seemed to have quite the talent for winding up our neighbour Moira - bad enough on one occasion for her to phone the police on us for getting her plants wet!
We were lucky enough to go on plenty of day trips and holidays whilst we were growing up including trips up to Florida and the Dominican Republic. This is where some of our favourite embarrassing stories come from. The classic that we all still talk about to this day was in the Dominican Republic back when we were much younger so we were sharing a bed.
One morning I woke up and had the misfortune to discover that Stuart had wet the bed, left me in it and went into my mum and dad’s bed! He did this so much that the maids left a note saying they had put on plastic sheets for the remainder of our stay. His exploits didn’t stop there and I can remember when we each got the bunk bed/futon (that was all the rage at the time) and he wet the bed the first night! I remember mum raging down the phone to Trisha asking for the orange cleaner!
There are a lot of other stories on this subject that can be exchanged for a gin and tonic at the bar. Cheers.
Stuart had always proven himself as the cheeky outgoing type but you wouldn’t have thought so when we went to some of the theme parks in Florida. Although the rollercoasters scared him, it was when he was met with any of the wonderful characters in Disney World in Florida that really got him going. Crying and screaming, he would refuse to go up to the Queen of Hearts to get her autograph. Watch The Rocky Horror Make-Up Show? Forget it.
I think we have Trisha to thank for this. She used to get our cousin Brian’s scary masks from his room when Stuart was misbehaving and jump out at him or chase him up the stairs. The other classic was her removing her false teeth which really scared him senseless!
I couldn’t come up here and not talk about the stag weekend either. We went to Krakow back in September with the first night ending up in a karaoke bar of all places.
Having Stuart up singing with absolutely no change in his tone or voice to Madonna’s Like A Virgin was amazing. This wasn’t even the best part as on the second night we dressed Stuart up as Princess Peach with the rest of us as Mario. Some of the Mario costumes were extremely dodgy too. We were like celebrities walking around Krakow that night with everybody wanting their picture taken with us.
And when I think back on it, it’s really amazing that the gay brother managed to get his straight brother to sing Madonna and dress up in drag for his stag weekend!
I can’t thank you enough for how you haven’t changed one bit since the day I came out and I’m so grateful that you accepted it and get on so well with Simon.
So here we are now, our families combined. We’ve already had a joint event and I had the most brilliant time at Christmas back at Stuart and Demi’s house.
We all played a friendly game of Cards Against Humanity, which for those of you who don’t know, is a game that you win by providing the funniest and/or most offensive answers to the questions asked.
Demi’s mum was a particular pro at this game and kept providing absolute belters for answers. Demi was far too embarrassed to even play along with us. I had to actually start writing things down because some of it was so good I thought it would be great for this speech. On reflection though, some of it was just too dirty to include. Our Grandma is here!
The one thing that I can tell you is that when someone played the ‘Cottaging’ card in answer to a question she responded with ‘WE USED TO DO THAT!’.
I had to step in to explain what cottaging actually was by which point Demi and Roxanne had died of embarrassment whilst we were crying with laughter. Clearly, she hadn’t paid much attention to George Michael’s fun back in Hampstead Heath.
If that’s not the biggest icebreaker to a family coming together, then I don’t know what is.
Demi, you look absolutely fabulous today as we all knew you would. I hope you are enjoying your day so far and are happy with our shirt collars, bridezilla.
It’s great to have you as a sister in law so I could get away with that and I look forward to many more games of Cards Against Humanity with you.
Stuart, thanks for asking me to be one of your best men today. It’s been a privilege to do this. I can see how happy you make each other and I wish you both nothing but happiness for your future together.
So then, ladies and gentlemen, I invite you all to stand and raise your glasses to toast the new husband and wife! We wish you well and your own happily ever after. To Stuart and Demi!”
If you found yourself smiling or laughing at certain bits during that, the good news is that this can be you in a while as well!
You Have To Start Strong With A Good Introduction
Not only does an impactful introduction make the audience sit up and take notice of you, but it also helps alleviate any potential nerves you might have.
A good tip is to induce laughter right from the get-go - after you tell the wedding guests who you are as seen here:
“For those who don’t know me, my name is Graham and I’m today’s best brother.
I say best brother as there’s less competition in that category than in the best man competition. So if you like Craig’s speech better, then at least I still win something...
Then try working in a small joke or a wry observation to get the ice breaking. Once you hear the laughs break out, that will give you the momentum you need to launch into the body of your message.
Thanksgiving Isn’t The Only Time To Give Thanks
Once you’re done establishing who you are in your opening remarks, the next (and natural) step is to express your gratitude towards the men and women of the hour.
A nice gesture would be to extend your thanks to the couples for organizing the event.
Then thank your friend or brother for giving you this honor.
Afterward, say thank you to the guests for being present This always makes the wedding party feel good and appreciated - as a bonus, you might even get warm smiles directed your way (which in turn, can fuel your confidence).
Have you thought about the groomsmen too? If you are not the only best man, then it makes sense that you express gratitude to them as well.
If you the only guy, you can ‘’thank yourself’’ and that will surely bring the house down. I must emphasize here that I haven’t heard any best man do this. But if you do, your brother or friend and the wedding guests will not forget what you said.
Now, let’s see how to write the body of your speech with.
Here’s an excerpt to refresh your memory.
‘’…Let me tell you a bit about growing up with Stuart - we met in the 90s, back in a time where it was fine to dress your children in popper tracksuit bottoms…’’
Here are a couple of ideas to help you come up with the main part of your message: walk down memory lane
A big chunk of your speech will undoubtedly cover your equation with the groom.
After all, he’s your ride or die (just not in the romantic sense). This is your chance to actually tell your best friend or brother the stuff that you’ve always just thought about - so make the most out of it.
- Talk about how and where you met him
- The kind of person he is
- How he’s made a difference to your life,
- What you admire the most about him
- What he’s taught you
Relate a couple of anecdotes where he’s had your back, talk about shared experiences that have shaped your lives, and narrate touching incidents that have strengthened your bond.
We’re sure that the end of your speech will result in your best friend suffocating you in a gruff, chokehold hug (#aw).
Bring It In For The Happy Couple
However, don’t spend all your time just talking about the groom.
Take this opportunity to talk about your new sister as well. Whether you’re narrating how your best friend or brother told you he was in love or a heartfelt story about how they met, it’s important for you to talk about them as a couple.
Always speak from the heart - telling the bride how beautiful she looks and how lucky your friend is to have her in his life is a beautiful way of getting those radiant smiles on both faces. Don't forget to praise the bridesmaids too for taking a huge weight off the bride's shoulder.
As you go about it, use metaphors and similes to share your experiences. For instance, you can use a simile to tell the wedding guests how the ‘’gloom’’ felt when he met the bride.
Remember that the spelling of gloom is deliberate here. You too can use it purposefully when you are talking about the groom.
For example, the gloom (oh my goodness, did I say gloom) is perfect for the blide because….
Now, let’s see how to tap into the power of similes.
Here we go (a short example)!
When Mike first met Angela after they had left school, I knew they were destined to be together. My sister was very distrustful of men but he used all the tricks he knew to woo her because she was unyielding like a rock.
Feeling like a disappointed goat, Mike almost gave up but I told him not to because quitters never win and he sure was not one.
He got to know that Angela was like a box of chocolate when he persisted and eventually won her heart.
Notice how I used those similes…like a disappointed goat… to write that short best man speech? That’s exactly the way to harness smiles to your advantage.
Another technique is the deliberate corruption of the English language. For example, you can say blide instead of the bride.
An example being… I got to know the blide during a school reunion..
Another example could be …Mike, I know you are a great guy and you’ve found the lady of your dreams. And I know you will adore her, care for her, and protect her. And to you Angela the blide(oh, what’s happening to me today…gloom and now blide)……..
This speech, more than acknowledging the groom’s presence in your life, is meant to celebrate the couple on the most important day of their lives. So, if you feel that this is the happiest your friend or brother has ever been, say it.
Thirty years down the line, you’re going to be looking back at some beautiful pictures, timeless smiles, and the memories of a truly unique speech and look back and be thankful that you made the groom proud.
Here’s How To End Your Speech With A Bang
Once you’re done recounting your adventures and addressing the ''amore'' in the room, make sure you end on a strong note. All great speeches have one singular element in common - a memorable ending.
Here are some pointers to help you close on a memorable note.
- Did you know that music or a well-known song can make your speech funny?
Most best men try so hard to find some funny words to spice up their messages. But it shouldn’t be so if you pick a soundtrack the guests can sing along.
Then rehearse it and or even substitute some of the lyrics with your own words. If you can play a musical instrument, that would be great.
Here is what I want you to do now. If you can sing a love song well, why not change the words and end your speech with it.
- A touching poem can also serve this purpose. There are so many of them online.
- You can dispense marriage advice to the bride and groom if you are married. If you are the father of the groom as well as his best man, you should bring your experience to bear. If you are not married yet, you can just mention what you admire about them and why you think they will make a lovely couple.
- Another great idea is to wish them well before you raise your glass for a toast.
- Are you a religious person or a Christian or are the couple rooted in faith? If you nodded yes to that, you can end with a bible verse or even a word of prayer from the scripture.
Let’s look at these verses:
Bible verse#1: Psalm 128: Blessed are all who fear the LORD, who walk in his ways. You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours. Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your sons will be like olive shoots around your table. Thus is the man blessed who fears the LORD.
Bible verse #2: Romans 12:10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.
Suppose you want to wish the couple well with the first verse, we will end up with this short word of exhortation.
Mike and Linda, God bless you so much for honoring him and bringing us together.
Your marriage has given us a glimpse of the Lord and savior Jesus Christ has for his church and the whole. As you start this union, may you acknowledge him in everything you do and he will always direct your steps.
Scripture says that those who walk in the paths of the Lord will be blessed in everything they do and they will be like olive shoots. My hope and prayer is that in good times and the bad, you will love each other so your lives will bring glory to the God of heaven and earth.
Always remember in your walk together that God brought you together to show others that true love still exists.
It’s the perfect time to hold your glass up, ask everyone to follow suit, look the couple in the eye, and offer a final, fitting tribute to seal your speech’s deal. If you’d like to add humor, that’s great, but do hone in on a sentimental finish to set the mood for the rest of the evening.
There you go, folks. One fresh, piping hot best man speech served!
As a final word of advice, don’t be afraid to write down parts of your toast; very few best men are blessed with an eidetic memory.
It’s fine to refer to these notes from time to time - but the more you practice and the more confident you get, you’ll be delivering one of the best ever best man speeches (without even glancing at them).