THE BEST MAN’S SPEECH THE MARRIAGE OF GARY AND SARAH CORAL BAY, CYPRUS, 06 06--08 08--2010 BY TONY REED
Well what can I say, I never thought I would be writing this, when Gary announced he was getting married in Cyprus in August you can imagine my surprise this was Ellesmere Port’s very own Cliff Richard saying he was getting married. Even more apt was his choice of a Summer Holiday for the event. THIS IS THE TALE OF GARY’S SPEECH.
Not to worry we thought we can buy some clothes in Pathos, however, a quick survey of the locals revealed a worrying trend in that the average male was about 5 foot 4 which is not a great sign for someone who is 6 foot 4 and someone who is 18 stone (I was a lot slimmer then). Also, a quick visit to the supermarket also revealed that the local ‘asda’ had a fine range of own brand underwear although this was no George by Asda this was the market leading and trend setting brand known as SEXWEAR. So after a quick sexwear shopping spree I managed to acquire a lovely skin tight t-shirt with a huge dolphin picture on the front and Gary got his Pathos Diving Club T-Shirt and we set off for the pubs and clubs of Pathos looking like a couple of characters from Little Britain, in fact, all we were short of was a wheelchair and we would have been the full on version of Andy and Lou. Unsurprisingly, it was not this holiday that formed Gary’s love of the Island but a couple of years later when he returned to Coral Bay with his bride to be and their full assortment of suitcases.
As some of you may already know Myself, my wife Terry and Gary, came to Cyprus about 5 years ago to celebrate Alex and Lyndsey’s wedding. Our trip was a little eventful as we were sent on our way without any of our bags.
TONY & TERRY
THE RUNNERS UP
KEV & SAM
PAUL & SARAH
TIM & CLAIRE
Some of you may have simply thought that Gary chose the funny good looking one as his best man but little did we know that Gary had arranged his very own X Factor to reach his decision. The venue of the Roscoe Pub in Liverpool was chosen for a showdown between Myself, Tim and Kev. Obviously, Millo couldn’t make it but he isn’t known for his fine singing voice, unlike Tim’s dulcet tones. So it was Tim up first with a fine rendition of a classic Frank Sinatra number, followed by Kev’s double set of David Moyes’ favourite song Dignity and a reworking of the classic Killers track of Are we human or are we Scousers. Faced with such competition I had to bring out old faithful and blasted out a fine version of Chas and Dave’s Rabbit which left the crowd begging for more. Like a true Simon Cowell, Gary took it all in whilst wearing a pair of beer mats as ear plugs. The result was announced in the cosy surroundings of the Roscoe Pub toilets and with the odour of the urinals stinging our nostrils Gary asked me to be his best man and I was obviously delighted to have been chosen. An awkward handshake followed and we partied the night away.
THE BEST MAN
Some of you may be unaware that Gary has been best man to a number of people, Paul, Tim, Kev and Myself and fortunately we were all able to get to Cyprus. So it was obviously going to be a difficult choice to name his own best man, or as the position is now known the Best of the Best Men Man.
THE STAG DO
So as with any wedding we needed a stag do and Gary chose Edinburgh as his preferred venue after a short spell dabbling with York, Glasgow, Newquay, Glasgow, York, Chester and York. It was a cracking weekend (despite a number of people being on the dreaded nights) which saw 8 top swiggers and Tim head off to the sites and sounds of Scotlands capital city. Saturday saw Gary take to the streets dressed as a big fruit, some may say well what’s new, but this time it was on purpose as he donned his Banana Man costume. The suit was that popular and got that much attention of a variety of Hen’s, stags and a Tramp (who thought he was Superman) that it is safe to say that it is now listed as a major tourist attraction in the Edinburgh Tourist Guide. Little did we know but as with the original banana man this also gave Gary some extraordinary powers. Gary likes a drink now and again with his friends but on this occasion he became super human and drank a long list of shorts that would have even rendered Me and Kev tipsy - he was like a man possessed. It soon became clear that his super powers were linked to the impressive consumption of about 7 bananas during the night. It did eventually take hold and like in the fairytales midnight came and his powers disappeared and Gary had to be defrocked, as we didn’t want any kids seeing a drunken bananaman, and he was sent on a rickshaw home with Our Dave. Much respect to Dave who spent the night looking after the fallen superhero.
Mother ‘Our’ Dave
I didn’t meet Gary until Senior School where we met in the testing environment of Home Economics where the school attempted to teach young men the key aspects of looking after the home. As usual I had forgotten my ingredients and had to tuck into Gary’s fine home cooking which I am sure continues today. It was during the cooking, ironing and cleaning lessons, that we realised we both had a love of Liverpool Football Club and it wasn’t long before I would join Gary, Kev and his mates to jump the train and go and stand on the Kop. Perhaps more notably was that it was at Whitby School where Gary first time he set eyes upon his bride to be although he was obviously a bit shy as it only took him 20 years to ask her out.
So what else can I tell you about Gary The Man, well he was born in June 1974 and his education started at the Woodlands Junior School just a few yards from his home on Edisbury Road. They say that your early years are your formative years and who can argue that the Woodlands has not played a large part in his development.
He could often be found with the 2 Kev’s, Ju and others in the clubs of Liverpool and Ellesmere Port with his whistle and glow sticks. His dancing prowess would eventually earn him the much coveted membership of one of Ellesmere Port’s top night spots, THE WAVERLEY.
Gary left school at 16 and in the early days he pursued a past time in dancing as he fell victim to the house music craze of the early 90’s.
In fact, even more remarkably I was able to trackdown Eddie (Charles unfortunately snuffed it a few years ago) and he is still performing. Unfortunately Eddie couldn’t be here tonight but through the wonder that is facebook but he did send Gary a special framed version of your favourite song.
Gary’s Mums house was home to an impressive array of biscuits and cereal and many a gadget including a fine SodaStream that in it’s later years would be used to revive Carlsberg Special Brew. However, most impressive was the ‘spaceage’ integral 8-track music player that obviously helped Gary form his love of music and I have managed to track down perhaps his number one favourite tracks of all time, the one and only all time classic of ‘Would I Lie to You’ by the famous Charles and Eddie (unfortunately Lee Hale still has his copy of Axel F and I was too embarrassed to try and locate a copy of Glen Madeiros’s ‘Nothing’s gonna change my love for you’.
Gary eventually, after rigorous test and exams, settled on a job in Toyota where is responsible for delivery of parts to the production line. Now I am almost certain that it is pure coincidence that in just a few years Toyota had gone from a Global Giant to the worldâ€™s biggest recaller of cars due to missing parts. Gary loves his time at Toyota and I love listening to his anecdotes about those hardworking little Chinese fellas although there is a more sinister side that is similar to the Fightclub but this is called Nightsclub and like Fightclub there are 3 rules of Nightsclub:
Rule 1. We always talk about working nights, Rule 2. We always mention about working nights and, Rule 3. We definitely let everyone know that we work nights!
In terms of his working career one of Garyâ€™s first jobs was at ABB in Rossmore where the punishing 9am start would eventual prove too much and after a few shorter term careers including a couple of hours on a building site in North Wales where he managed to become one of the first victims of identity theft.
However his main love has been watching and playing football and Gary has played represented the school and a whole host of local clubs and it is only recently that Gary has called a day to his glittering football career.
I had the pleasure of playing in quite a few teams with Gary and saying he was laid back is an understatement of understatements it was a common occurrence to turn up at Garyâ€™s Mums house and then sit in the car while Gary gradually came to the door wearing more items of clothing and eventually after 20-30 minutes he would emerge boots in hand, carrying a cup of tea with a piece of toast. The highlight of his glittering career was undoubtedly the victory in Ellesmere Portâ€™s Sunday League Division 2 FA Cup otherwise known as the Arthur Scott Memorial Cup which saw Gunners Labour Party Social Club Associated Football Club run out 21 victors over the Grace.
Gary was a keen sportsman enjoying main stream sports of cycling, golf, tennis, cricket but he did have a brief fling at the specialist minority sports including an unsuccessful trial of escalator surfing and the infamous stomach of steel trials of 1995.
Indeed this friendly good natured personality has won him many friends and even his own stalker, and I am sure I have just seen Matty Carr checking in at reception.
So as we get older things start changing, except for Garys hair, and it is said that we regress to childhood and as his education started in the Woodlands Primary School it now continues in the Woodlands School of Life where Gary is still a regular and similar to the tales of Dr Doolittle, Gary too has developed the knack of being able strike up a friendship with anyone.
CHEERS IT’S NOW TIME TO RAISE A GLASS TO OUR MATE GARY AND HIS BEAUTIFUL WIFE.
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