How I learned that being a best man takes more than just attending a wedding
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“When my friend Carl asked me if I wanted to be his best man, my answer was obvious: ‘Let me think about it…’, I told him and enjoyed keeping him in suspense. But after a couple of seconds I couldn’t hide my proud smile anymore.‘ Of course I want to!’, I laughed and we toasted to the new level of bonding our long lasting friendship had just reached.
A moment later, I realised I had no idea what I was going to have to face. You don’t really think about a wedding before it’s your own turn, so I wasn’t exactly an expert, but all doubts were quickly forgotten over the feeling of great honour and Carl’s happy face. Months went by and I gave no further thought to my new role as a best man – until the big wedding day came closer.‘ Have you guys made a decision on your suits yet?’ We were having dinner at Carl’s place, when his soon-to-be wife Mary asked a question that hit me totally unprepared. ‘Sure’, I mumbled, after Carl gave me a not very discreet push with the elbow.
The next day I found myself listening to Carl’s enthusiastic voice as he shared his vision of an extravagant dinner jacket with the tailor we visited. The man was one of the finest craftsmen in town and I shared his scepticism about Carl’s preference. It was one of my duties as best man to think not only about my friend’s interest, but also about the couple’s peace. Since I knew Mary dreamt of a classical wedding in white, the style was set: it would be formal and elegant. Well advised by the tailor, we went for a classy black suit in combination with a white shirt and a tie of the same colour. Carl looked splendid in it and I chose a suit for myself that would match but by no means outmatch his. ‘Weddings are about bride and groom – no need to pull all the attention towards yourself’, I thought. I thought wrong. Attention found me, if I wanted it or not. As the word spread that I would be the best man, I became an advisor not only for Carl and Mary but also for everyone else invited to the wedding.
The number one question I heard over the next weeks: ‘You are Carl’s best man…you must know what kind of wedding presents they are looking for?’If you are ever in the situation of being a best man, be aware that people will expect you to give them assistance with gift ideas, so here’s a little input I would have found useful myself:
Every man loves watches since it’s virtually the only jewellery a man can wear. But I kept that to myself as I already had a nice watch for Carl in mind. Another thing you can’t go wrong with is cufflinks – a groom has to look excellent even after the wedding. Speaking of after the wedding: there will be a honeymoon. Send your friend away with a nice, handy duffle bag. And, of course, one of the greatest gifts a group of friends can give a groom is the stag party. I won’t go into detail here, let’s just say it wasn’t too wild (alright, it was).
Joking aside: With all the fun and happy moments a wedding and the preparations for it brought, there was one part I took very seriously: I was expected to act as a legal witness to the marriage and therefore had to sign the marriage certificate. That’s an important act and I felt that I wouldn’t want to ask the priest for a pencil, so I bought a nice little gift for myself: a fountain pen that would be a worthy companion long after the ink on the marriage certificate had dried.With everything arranged the big wedding ceremony could come and I took one more moment to look back at the past months. A period that made me realise that a best man is truly more than a glorified friend for the moment of the wedding. He is a best friend for life. And by the way – not only groom and bride like gifts. If you want to thank your best man for his service, here is some inspiration:
Montblanc Heritage Spirit Orbis Terrarum
While a wedding brings together bride and groom, this proof of true craftsmanship combines 24 time zones and the change of day and night in an innovative complication.
Iconic cuff links
As timeless as a wedding vow: these cuff links feature a hemisphere piece with luminescent details, creating a jewel that captures the eye.
Meisterstück Soft Grain Small Duffle
A handy bag, made of Italian full-grain cowhide, and convenient pockets.
Montblanc M Rollerball
Made of black precious resin, the writing instrument’s fluid lines flow gently into one another.
Samsung Galaxy S7 Hard Shell Cover Meisterstück Soft Grain
As a best man you have to make a lot of important calls. When they literally get out of hand, this hard shell protects your Galaxy S7 in a precious cover made of Italian full-grain leather.
A best man needs a suit and a suit needs a belt - sometimes it is that simple. This one features a shiny palladium-coated horseshoe pin buckle with engraved Montblanc brand name on the sides and Montblanc emblem.