I read an article this week that really upset me. It concerned a newly engaged man who realised that he hadn’t spoken to his ‘best friend’ in a couple of years. The article began with the groom to be about to re enter his friends life to ask him to be his best man.
This made me sad for a number of reasons. I have been a best man several times and am proud of the fact that I am in close contact with each of the happy husbands, whether that’s a phone call every few weeks, a pint after work to discuss how Jose Mourhino has completely lost it or a cup of tea on a hungover Sunday. I realise that the world has changed and that it’s very rare to live in the same town as your best friends. Some people don’t even live on the same continent as their best men or maid of honour and have to make do with a blurry Skype session every now and again. Working hours are getting longer and life seems to race by meaning that quite often we can lose track of just how long it’s been since we were in the same room as people we love.
One of the things I enjoy most about going on a stag, apart from normal hours of booze consumption going out the window, is the chance to spend a night, a weekend or a week with people who mean more to anything than me. When those tattered suit cases are loaded off the mini bus or the Ryan Air carousel at the end of the stag, we all go back to being Dads, over worked professionals or functioning alcoholics. For those few precious hours though, it’s an opportunity to spend quality time with people who you really don’t see enough.
In my opinion there is never a valid reason to lose touch with someone you consider a close friend. Even the most time starved amongst us have the chance to pick up the phone on a walk to the shops or to send a text when we are watching match of the day. If someone turned up at my door asking me to be their best man when I hadn’t seen them for two years I wouldn’t really see it as a massive honour. In fact I would probably feel like I was in some sort of American rom com starring Vince Vaughan. The bottom line is, friends stay in touch. It’s not always easy and it’s not always consistent but it happens whether it’s a drunk text, a Facebook message or a long overdue pint.
If you’re thinking of popping the question to your best man and they live in the same country as you, at least pick up the phone and call them. Perhaps put aside all those other things you had to do for three hours and have a beer, a cup of tea or a round of crazy golf with them.
Oh yeah, if you really haven’t seen them for ages make sure you send them my way for the speech. You’ll thank me for it when you get the wedding video!