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Jan-Jun 2000 Archive
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At my wedding, I had my new sister in law stand up for me. After the ceremony, everyone was toasting the new couple. But, most of the toasts were geared toward my husband, with my name just thrown in. My sister in law also realized this and stood up and said this toast was especially for me. She paused, thought a moment, and with a big smile blurted out, "Here today, gone tomorrow, f_ _ _ the dog that bit you!" I knew at that moment how loved I was by my new found family. Toasts0217-01

My tale is brief. A friend from work got married - we'll call him Dave. Well, Dave is a sweet guy and perhaps a bit too sweet. He was marrying a gal we'll call Sarah. At the reception, Dave's brother is giving the toast and says, "Sarah, Dave usually dates girls who are projects and have things wrong with them. You don't seem to have anything wrong with you that I can tell. Welcome to the family!!"

My husband has been in the private club industry for many years and has seen his share of wedding reception flubs. Last Saturday, a particularly pricey reception was held at the exclusive, lakeside club where he currently works. The decorations were sumptuous; white on white, special chairs brought in, towering silver vases filled with flowers on every tabletop. The whole affair was the epitome of elegance. Then...the toast. Brother of the groom/best man "Eddie" rose to his feet at the head table and held his glass aloft in front of the entire chic crowd. He began with a lovely story about the day his brother, the groom, proposed to the bride on a sun swept beach. It all sounded nice enough, but then Eddie went on to say that after the bride accepted, the groom proceeded to call his best friend. "Not me", Eddie explained, "but Jack...Jack Daniels!" Eddie then went on to describe just how slobbering drunk his brother got with "Jack"! Not too awful, you say? Just wait! Eddie then went on to tell the guests that he was sure the bride and groom had been sleeping together for some time, and that he had the photos to prove it. Unfortunately, he said, the happy couple had confiscated the incriminating pictures. The bride was mortified, the groom livid, and the assembled guests shocked to silence. My husband tells me there wasn't even a nervous laugh from anyone to break the grim mood. I guess if those photos did exist, it was a blessing Eddie was relieved of them. Otherwise, he probably would have passed them around the room!  Toasts0105-01

I became engaged to my wonderful new husband in June of 2000, after 3 years of friendship and a year and a half of dating. I had only met his parents once before this, so naturally I wanted to get to know them better. For months they were rather cold towards me, why I didn't know. By the time the wedding rolled around, I had started to feel more comfortable with them, and our relationship seemed promising. Our ceremony went off without a hitch, and the reception was going along smoothly. Then came time for the toasts. The best man gave a very heartfelt, moving speech. We were about to start dinner when one of my FIL's co-workers, stood up and asked to say a few words. It started out nice, with all the usual complimentary stuff about the groom and how beautiful the bride was. Then came the most offensive and humiliating moment I have ever experienced. It was especially hurtful because I learned a few things about my M&FIL that I had obviously missed.

Here it is word for word: "What I respect most about "Mike" is his courage and faith in equality. For those of you who don't already know, Anne is half white, half Brazilian. Mike knew his parents would object to her, and quite possibly disown him if he continued their relationship. Instead of giving up the woman he loves, Mike forced them to respect her and treat her with dignity. He introduced Anne to his parents friends, even after they begged him not to, and would not allow them to call her a HALF-BREED in front of his younger siblings. He even got his mother to stop scrubbing parts of the house Anne had been in." He went on to say a few other things, but I think you get the point.

When he sat down, all 250 guests were totally silent. My husband's relatives (who aren't bigoted in any way), were completely mortified. My father and step-mother gave my M&FIL the coldest looks I've ever seen. To add insult to injury, my Brazilian mother died three years ago, and the toast was a very painful reminder. It was also very cruel for my step-mom, who had already dealt with several rude comments from my M&FIL's friends about our different ethnicity’s earlier (she's white). The best man saved the day by standing up and giving a second toast. The rest of the evening went well, and my M&FIL left immediately after dinner.  Toasts0407-01

At my niece's wedding, her mother, my sister-in-law, gave a very lengthy toast, beginning with "While you are not the man we would have chosen for our daughter..." Yikes.   Toasts0529-01

Several years ago, my friend Greta moved from New York City to Virginia to take a better job. It was there that she met her husband-to-be, Robert. In true southern tradition, the months leading up to their wedding were filled with engagement parties; somewhat formal and for the most part, tastefully done. Robert's father had passed away, and he was very close to his mother and sister. At the wedding rehearsal, he stood up to give a passionate toast, "To the three most important women in my mother, my grandmother and my sister!" There was absolutely NO mention of Greta, the woman he would be marrying the following day!  Toasts0601-01

My husband, teenage daughter and I attended the wedding reception of our daughter's friend's mother at a local hotel where many of the wedding party and guests were lodging. Although I thought a formal, bouffant, white wedding gown in questionable taste for a 40-year-old bride's second wedding with her three children in attendance, I tried to keep my thoughts charitable. When I noticed that she appeared to be about 8 1/2 months pregnant, that became tougher. The capper came, though, when the best man presented his toast. It started out conventionally enough, but then began to dwell more upon the bride's alluring qualities and finished with the line, "Congratulations, Jim, but remember we're in the room next door, so I hope she's not a screamer!"  Toasts0609-01

Attending a wedding a few years ago, I kind of knew that we were in for something when the Best Man warned everyone at the reception to sit tight because his toast would be long. After a series of silly jokes too insignificant to remember now, he launched into a planned joke event I felt was not only tacky but insulting to the bride and everyone else there. He said that now that the groom was married, all the women who had keys to his apartment should turn them in since they wouldn't be able to use them any longer. As signaled, a dozen or so single women walked up to the head table and dropped keys in front of the groom who sat there smiling nervously. Yes, he had given them each a key and staged the "humorous" event. The kicker was a few seconds later when the groom's own grandmother walked conspicuously up to the head table and deposited her key. People laughed. I shuddered at the implication and the blatant tackiness. Toasts0706-01

This is not a funny joke.  The implied sexual promiscuity is indiscreet, tasteless and insulting.  Some variations of this "game" have the last person with a key being a very young female relative or an elderly relative as if games about incest were humorous. 

This is by far my favorite wedding story ever...(although the Titanic dress saga gives it a good run for the money). When I was a teenager one of my friends' summer job was working in a local community center. He was responsible for setting up chairs and tables for events and at the end of the night he was to clean up and put everything away. So while the events took place he just patrolled the building to make sure everything needed was available (and he also peeked into rooms where functions were being held. He's a nosy boy). A wedding was being held in one of the rooms and Dave was glued to the action. Apparently the groom was completely drunk but insisted on saying a few words during the speeches. The groom told this lovely story about a conversation he had had with his father-in-law, 'Phil' just a few days earlier: "So, Phil and I were having beers the other day and he started asking me why I wanted to marry his daughter. I said that she's kind and all that but he keeps asking me. So I say, she's fun to be around and then he asks him AGAIN, 'no, really, WHY do you want to marry my daughter', then I say, 'because she gives good h%@*d!" ( at this point, Dave says that the room is silent save a few of the groom's equally pissed drunk friends who were all giggling shyly at the back of the room, but the story continues...) "And so Phil says, 'like mother like daughter!!!" The groom was laughing his mullet-head off while the bride and the rest of the wedding party and guests looked horrified except for the groom's friends who had ERUPTED in hysterics and were rolling around on the floor at the back of the room. God love white trash.   Toasts0713-01

This is a short story about a nephews wedding and the toast his uncle thought needed to be made. Here is the exact wording of the "toast". "Here's to the bride and here's to the groom And all the love that fills this room But one of these days there'll come a fight She'll cross her legs and say good-night" Thankfully the bride has a great sense of humor and she did not get mad and much to her credit to this day she is very cordial and polite to the uncle. The uncle has since learned that this type of "toast" is not appropriate under any circumstances.   Toasts0905-01

My college roommate got married relatively late in life--30--and our extended friendship group arrived eager to participate in our typically rowdy fashion. A group of us were seated directly in front of the head table. No sooner had the best man issued the first toast when one of the male friends at our table--"Deke"--leaped up to make a loud toast. 'Here's the bride! I hope the groom had as much fun with her as I did!" The whole head table was so taken aback by the speed and "double entendre" of the toast that half of them literally flipped over backward in their chairs laughing, landing upside down with feet flailing in the air. A simultaneous growl went up in the back half of the room where the brides' male relatives took a decidedly different view of the subject. The rest of the night was spent listening to sobering toasts proclaiming the bride's honor.   Toasts0907-01

The groomsman got up to make his toast. He had no notes and was going to wing it. That's fine, I've known him a long time and he's a funny guy. Sadly, he managed to say that the bride had used her uterus in return for an engagement ring. I almost choked.  Toasts1130-01