Congratulations. You've done the back-breaking, knee-bending, question-popping slog and she said "yes". It's a good start. You've chosen the woman you want beside you at the altar. Now it's time to call in the boys...
But which boys exactly? How do you choose? Whilst most women keep records of their bridesmaid choices in pink notebooks from the age of 8, this might be the first time you've given it any thought. For some of you, this part is a little bit blurry, potentially political, and a sick twisted popularity contest. Not since choosing sides for sport in primary school has such a decision been so blatant in telling people who you like more than others.
There is no 'correct' number of groomsmen that you should have.
- The average number is between one and six.
- There are no set rules on matching groomsmen and bridesmaid numbers - although having just one on your side and 12 on hers is maybe a little uneven.
- Think quality, not quantity. You should never ask someone to be part of the wedding party just to 'make up the numbers'. It's not cool.
The wedding day will be a big happy blur for you and the future Mrs, so functionally speaking, you're picking guys that will do a job. Groomsmen traditionally have a bunch of official roles:
- Greeting and seating guests at the ceremony
- Helping with the behind-the-scenes heavy work on the day (e.g. unloading cars with decorations/presents/large aunts etc)
- Accompanying the bridesmaids at the service and reception
- Planning and attending the bucks night
- Generally helping the groom out
The best man
In Ye Olde times, the best man was like a matrimonial bodyguard, the name deriving from him being the best swordsman in the land."¨Best men come in all shapes and sizes. Most common are:
- Close male friends or brothers
- Occasionally it's female friends
- Some even choose their dad
Your Best man needs to be:
Now that we've just eliminated 90% of all males, your job should be much easier. It also helps if he's calm under pressure and is okay about speaking in front of a crowd of happy drunk people (they're an easy audience).
Bad reasons for picking him to be your best man:
- You feel obliged to
- He is the funniest
- Most photogenic
- Closest in height
- The best buck's night organiser.
If you can't see yourself watching footy with him in 20 years time, then he's not best-man material (or just doesn't like footy - same thing really).
Best man duties
Use this list to determine whether your number one draft pick will be up to the task.
- Attending the wedding rehearsal, if there is one.
- Organising and overseeing the buck's night so that you not only have a great time but your fiancée still wants to marry you after it's over.
- Often required to pick up and return the hire tuxes/suits for the groomsmen.
- Generally suck up to both families, offer to help with transport, deliveries etc where possible.
- Provide you, the groom with moral support, in a man-hugging back-slapping platonic sense of course.
- Picking you up on the wedding day.
- Making sure everyone will be there on time. Well, the boys at least - the bride is meant to be late.
- Checking all logistics and scenarios on the day. He is not required to wear dark glasses and an earpiece or talk into his collar.
- Telling the females how lovely they all look, even if they don't really.
- Being in charge of the rings, and if you're starring in a movie, he must comically lose them and get them back at the last possible moment.
- Signing the marriage license as a legal witness to the wedding. Even if he fails at everything else, this one is handy.
- Capable of delivering a speech that is equal parts funny anecdotes, embarrassing stories, and mush about how lucky you are to have found such a great gal.
- Getting first pick of the bridesmaids.
- Dancing with everyone at the reception. Including the fat, the old and the ugly.
- Checking groomsman are collecting up the wedding gifts and not re-selling them on eBay.
- Decorating the newlyweds car. Tin cans, shaving foam are good. Spray paint and blowtorches are not.