The Toast I Never Gave

I recently attended a wedding for an old and valued friend, Ben Lindsey.  He married Jana Chaffin at the Davis Islands Garden Club. The late-afternoon ceremony was held under a canopy of live oak trees near the water.  It was breezy and cool and absolutely beautiful.  Afterward, cocktails flowed and the wait-staff passed trays of bacon-wrapped scallops and spring rolls.  Just before dinner a couple of guests delivered speeches.  I was not one of them.  But I was prepared in the event I was called upon at the last minute. 

I think everyone needs to be prepared to be a good guest at large group events.  You should be able to tell three clean jokes.  Everyone regardless of age should be able to understand the jokes and share their humor.  Nobody should get offended by them.  Additionally, everyone should be armed with some thoughtful words to speak whenever needed.  A little planning and rehearsal go a long way here.  Had I been asked to suddenly step in and say some words, this is what I would have said. . .

The Ties That Bind. . .

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“I think a lot about the subject of time.  And how time is regarded in different situations.  For everyone here under the age of 30, time stands still.  Years pass but those of you in your 20s or younger don’t feel it. Time marches on but you always look beautiful and feel terrific.  Enjoy this time of your life, it will not last.  Somewhere around the age of 40, time catches up and you will start seeing and feeling the visible signs of age. Pass the age of 50 and you find yourself racing against time to do all the things you want to do in what remains of your life.  Time, once your friend, now becomes an enemy and can steal your peace and serenity.

The passing of time is a paradox.  While it’s is a standard measure, the speed of its passing is situational.  Time moves slowly, sometimes unbearably so, when you wait.  Whether you are waiting for someone to say “YES”, an important event to arrive, or medical test results, time seems to move at a glacial pace. Yet the same measurement of time moves so fast when you are enjoying a beautiful night like tonight, surrounded by the warmth of friends and family.  Wouldn’t it be great if time could stand still right now and this moment could last forever?  But in the blink of an eye, this night will be over and the only thing left will be the memories we hold close to our hearts.

Time is a wonderful and mysterious thing.  And now it’s time for a toast.  So please join me in raising a glass to Time.  To spending it with the ones we love.  To relationships that pass the test of time.  And most importantly, to Jana and Ben. Thank you for including us in your special day and this wonderful time together.” 

Best wishes Ben and Jana!