* 'Tis a Gift to be Simple
You are, In a polite way, saying, "Gentlemen, start your engines!" Don't dawdle. A toast should be brief. Do not read a lengthy quote or poem, or recount a long-winded story about you and the groom as young boys. Sure, get a laugh, get sentimental, be gracious, thank some people, but keep it short.
* Do the Paperwork
Unless you have a talent for such things, you shouldn't expect to do this toast impromptu - you should write it out and think about it for a few days. Relax, we'll help you with that below.
* Practice, man, practice.
Yes, and practice well before the big day, not the morning of - you'll have too much on your mind by that point. Deliver this toast to yourself in front of a mirror, into a tape recorder, in a large empty room. Know how loud you will need to speak.
* Make sure every glass is full.
It's hard enough to start one speech let alone two. Why begin your stellar oration only to be interrupted by a guest who thinks his drink is more important than your toast. This is the stage, not the screen, there will be no second takes. Alert the caterer, bartender, headwaiter, dumbwaiter, whatever it takes - there are people who are paid to handle this - delegate. To silence the room, we would love to hear of a more dignified attention device than the clinking glass - sadly, it works every time, use it if you must.
* Begin your toast.
An amazing trick; Make sure that you know the first thing you are going to say, and if you have practiced, the rest will follow. It is always recommended that you do not read your toast, but deliver it from memory. Remember that you can make crib notes and keep them on the table in front of you for quick reference. If you're nervous, take three or four deep breaths before standing.
Raise your glass with your right hand. Be sure that the glass is held straight from the shoulder. Historical note: back when paying tribute by toasting was in its infancy, y'know when men were men and carried swords and daggers? it was not unusual that a weapon, if not in the right hand, might have been concealed in one's clothing. The traditional toasting posture - tasty drink in outstretched right hand - proved that you had come in friendship.
* P's and Q's
In addition to your magnificent sentiments for the bride and groom, it's proper for you to thank the parents of the Bride and the parents of the Groom. Also thank the Groom for choosing you as the Best Man. As if he had a choice, you swanky bastard, you.
* Say Amen, Somebody
Your toast should end with wording which makes it clear to the guests that the end has come. It's easy to do this with a bit of flair, just bring your voice up a notch in volume, and say, for example, "so here's to Jane and Dick!" and then the guests will say "to Jane and Dick". (Applause) You smile, blush, take your seat, shucks, 'tweren't nothing. Also, In case you've been living in a cave on a small island, It's traditional to clink glasses after the toast has been proposed, but before it is drunk. If you are the recipient of a toast, you do not stand, raise your glass, or take a sip of your drink, but you do thank the toasters, or at least smile and graciously nod. You are not obliged to propose a toast in return.
Well, gosh guys, that's all great and all, but, fer cryin' out loud, I have no idea what type of speech to give? Got any ideas on what I can do...?
We're here to help....!
These are just some ideas, and we don't know you, take all the credit you want... ON US!
You are the man. bar none.
Types of Speeches