Considering that its now less than a week to go, I think I’d better start planning my speech.From the moment Jem was born, I was aware that this day would eventually come and that there was one certain fact; that I would have to stand and deliver something that would merit being a half decent FOTB offering.
It does feel like I’m approaching a final exam, that, despite the time spent revising and pouring over old notes, there is the inevitable period of time when you have to deliver the goods to fixed grins and polite titters.
I have sought help from various sources.
‘The Father of the Bride speech should be personal and heart-warming and should sound up lifting about his daughter and son-in-law’s future. Your speech should begin by thanking the guests for attending and should acknowledge the Groom’s parents whilst welcoming your new son-in-law to the family.’ Dull, but I think I can cover those bits, (in my own way!)
But one major problem is that I’m so often chastised, reprimanded and forbidden from talking out loud at gigs. That and the fact that when I do, I keep hearing ‘the voices’ telling me to crack this or that cheesy gag, or say something relatively bad taste, misplaced or tasteless. So generally I am not encouraged to have my own ‘live’ microphone, Now, however I am being encouraged with an air of amused expectancy. Hence my dichotomy !
So how should I approach this? I have kept, over many years, pictures, tapes and memorabilia for this very purpose and said out loud, when finding yet another embarrassing document from the past that; “This will be perfect for the wedding speech; I can definitely use that.” Only to find now that in order to show even a small selection, my time on the podium would stretch to monstrously indulgent ninety minutes, and I’d have close to three hundred people begging me to ‘Start the car’ or ‘Sit Down!!’ with a heckler shouting from the back of the room “Where exactly is this going??!”
And now with all of our social networking activities being worn closer than our most intimate mufty jumpers, it’s all out there anyway. We revel in the embarrassing, unusual and daft so there are no surprises any more.
Even the ‘Had to be there moments’ and family anecdotes pale against the daily moment by moment FB/Twitter events that describe the smallest, dullest, most boring activities with gagging mirth and helpless amusement.’Lol’ as we say!
I’m tempted to start an event page and simply allow others to add their stories and recollections of Jem and then I can just read them out on the day.
I’ve imagined standing and beginning to speak; top lip glued to teeth.
I’ve rehearsed a few lines and heard the echoes of creaking furniture and the rustling of the table clothes.
I’ve thought up a few gags which I imagine to be followed by the rolling desert brush weed and the single toll of the church bell.
Should I pause for a reaction and or laughter?….. Or just keep going to the end of the page? ‘FOL’ as we say (fart out loud)
Whichever way I imagine it, I still get that single bead of sweat down the back of the neck as I try to fathom out the reasons why I’m standing up despite being a ‘seasoned performer’.
The unexpected titter as I instinctively check my flies, waiting to announce the final toast to absent friends and hoping that it will reach the misfit or naughty table way at the back of the room.
But wait. I get it… I’m talking about my firstborn. Who only a minute ago was tiny, relied on me and her mother for every little thing. And now all I have to do is say ‘I DO’ at the right time and say how much I love her still. How difficult can that be? Sorted!
The only thing now is to plan the soundcheck at the reception, make sure the backline is in place and that I have a roadie to tune and hand over the guitars, and a dressing room to rehearse, including a mound of hot towels! Some things, thankfully, never change!