The Toast

[Note: This isn’t exactly what I said at the toast, but the story’s the same.]

I am in the odd position for most best men; I’ve actually known the bride much longer than I’ve known the groom. But I can tell you the exact day when Sean and I first met. It was May 26, 2001. Some friends of ours needed some grunt work to help clear out the flower bed, and I heard that Katharine’s new flame, Sean, would be there. I looked forward to going.

The biggest thing that we needed to do prior to tilling the beds was to rip out the holly bushes that were there. Sean and I aggressively attacked the first bush, talking all the while and starting to build the basis of the friendship that would take us to this day. Eventually, we got the branches pruned from the bush and were left with the trunk. We broke up the root system a bit, and then went about deciding how to remove the stump.

Predictably, I had the idea that I’d use my truck to pull it out. I fished out some rope, and we tied it around the bush and then to the tailgate of my truck. I pulled forward, the rope broke, and Plan A was revised.

I looked at Sean; he looked at me. “We can pull this out.”

We braced our feet against the brick border. Hand over hand, Sean and I made a quick count and then a great shove. A couple seconds later, the stump gave way and we were on our asses, everyone laughing.

I think that’s a pretty good metaphor for our friendship.

Sean and Katharine, thanks so much for letting me be a part of your special day. May you be blessed with many wonderful years of marriage as you spend the rest of your days together. I love you guys.

[Now I cry.]