When the madness of the wedding has subsided, and the happy couple arrive home from the honeymoon, they’ll probably choose to overlook the stifling sunburn and the equally stifling bank statements to glance at the guestbook.
As they open the pages of the exquisite book that was carefully passed around at the wedding, expecting to find poetic best wishes for their new lives together they might not be all that thrilled to find that instead there’s the picture you did of a crudely drawn todger and a drunken scrawl of: “GIVE HER ONE FROM ME, NICE ONE M8”.
We sympathise though, the fear of the blank white page, the pressure of suddenly distilling a lifetime of friendship into a pithy sentence or two can be enough to put even the greatest writer off his pen strokes.
To help out, we’ve put together a few pointers on what to write when someone hands you the guestbook.
Go for the Sincere
Let’s be honest; sincerity is easy. You just think, “what genuine sentiment can I express that I would never say to my friend in person?” Then you write that down. Sincerity also has a bonus – as the guestbook gets passed around all the single ladies are going to be wondering who the guest is that wrote such beautiful words, little realising that you’re emotionally dead inside.
Pay particular attention to the bride, her dress, her skills at planning the wedding, then pitch it at whatever seems the right side of creepy.
Use a memory
Try and recall a specific event or conversation or ‘moment’ of your own from the wedding, it’ll show you were paying attention and help the bride and groom remember their day in more detail. However, try not to saunter around the reception taking culinary notes and scoring the cheesecake out of ten in preparation.
You may think that your mate has just made the biggest mistake of his life but that doesn’t mean that you can’t write, “I hope to find someone who makes me as happy as you have. Best wishes for your life together.”
Sobriety is key
Ensure you pen your little appraisal sober. Otherwise, at best your handwriting will be completely illegible at worst you’ll think it’s the actual hotel’s guestbook and use this treasured space to attempt to get a rude barman fired.
You may have got in trouble for using other people’s words at school, but in the world of the guestbook, dropping a quote or two can be instant joy. And best of all the other guests will think that you’re the sort of A Grade fellow who can quote clever stuff on demand, they’ll never know you had it written on a cue card.
Here are some of our favourites:
“I love being married. It’s so great to find one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life.” – Rita Rudner
“To laugh often and love much… to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others, to give one’s self… this is to have succeeded.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
“A happy marriage has in it all the pleasures of friendships, all the enjoyment of sense and reason – and indeed all the sweets of life.” – Joseph Addison
Read what all the other guests have written beforehand and simply parrot a few of the phrases that everyone else has used. Try not to include things like, “You’re the most beautiful daughter a father could hope for”, or “You’ll always be my special little boy.”
Have you got any gems that you routinely use in these situations? Made any mistakes? Any worse than this one below? Share them with us on the forum! Or on the comments – whatever!