Pat May Weiner

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Wednesday, 29 June, 2016

Taipei, Taiwan

A few weeks ago, I gave my pal, John, the night of his life – took him on a boat, had him dancing with his shirt off and rap battling a stranger. I still fully assume that the stag party was by far the highlight of his year. Unfortunately, as we are all aware, there is a consequence of a great stag do. Sooner or later a mini plastic version of you is going to be planted into the middle of a big, fat cake – it’s kind of a package deal. So, he is now married.

Prior to the big day, John was aware that I intended to bring a guest to the ceremony, however, wasn’t entirely sure of her name – it’s Monica, by the way.

Now, I imagine preparing a wedding is a pretty stressful gig – therefore, I thought that I’d cheer him up a bit, or at least, be more of a nuisance when it came to my own personal Q&A. Naturally, he wanted Monica’s name – but simply complying would have been a bit beige – where’s the fun in that? Nope, instead I decided to christen her with a new name.

“John, my guest’s is called Pat May Weiner.”
“If you don’t give me her real name, I will write that on her table spot.”
“That is her real name.”
“Right.”

We got to our table, and there it was, Danny Parker and Pat May Weiner. I’ve never felt so proud of a personal achievement! I was a bit disappointed that my name tag didn’t say Dragon, but, you know, I got over that when I had a second glance at Pat May Weiner. Oh, it was glorious!

Soon after arriving, we decided to make the most of the free booze. I always feel like a right old plonker in a shirt and tie, in fact, I only own one set, and it’s the same getup that I’ve worn to all weddings, funerals and interviews for five years – so I required a drink.

Naturally, Pat obviously also needed to quickly neck something. So, we started to sip a couple of tinnies and mingle, right up until the ceremony was about to get underway.

My friends and I were all on the left side of the aisle, while the cold beers were situated on the right. We soon realised that we were in a far from ideal arrangement. Moments before the wedding, Steve and I were running on empty. Thus, I was nominated to nip across, grab a couple of chilled ones and head back. I did indeed get the beers – only, it would seem that the wedding was due to start a lot sooner than I anticipated.

Before I made it back, the best man and maid of honour were already walking down the aisle. I was trapped until the end. I would be drinking my can while sitting next to some old Taiwanese lady (I’m going to guess a relative of the bride) for the rest of the proceedings. I did offer her Steve’s but her face suggested that she wasn’t there for the lager in the same way that I was.

The right side were far more emotional too, I was suddenly casually having a drink while everybody around me were in tears and clapping at every other line – I felt like I was the inconsiderate twat that turns up to an alcoholics anonymous meeting with a beer.

Talking of cry babies, John blubbered his way through his speech too – he was sobbing at every other word. I was essentially sitting with an old Taiwanese family and drinking a beer as I watched my mate cry. It was a bit surreal. The old dear next to me actually caught my eye and gave a little smirk when John first started to develop his wobbly lip – if nothing else, we’ll always have that moment.

I must say, it made for lovely viewing though and everybody directly involved in the wedding looked very elegant and dashing. The old lady and I certainly enjoyed it, and give you all a big thumbs up.

After the ceremony, we all went inside the main hall to tuck into some grub and listen to the speeches. If that part of the event taught me anything, it is that I never want to be the best man at a Taiwanese wedding – it seems like a truly brutal gig.

A Chinese translator accompanied the poor bloke to the stage, so that the entire audience could understand his quips. Unfortunately, though, this arrangement would make a one-liner drag on for ten minutes – with each of his gags being broken into half, and at points, even thirds. This resulted in a joke’s punch line being so far away from the setup that the audience mostly just zoned out.

Not only was his material flat due to this, but it also made his time on stage twice as long. It was along the lines of…

“So, it’s hard to know where to start when talking about John.”
*One minute of Chinese translation*
“He’s extremely handsome, smart, witty, charming and…”
*One minutes of Chinese translation*
“Sorry, John. I’m having trouble reading your writing.”
*One minute of Chinese translation*

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Yep, I did not envy him in that moment. He is a very nice guy though and came all the way from England just for the wedding. Talking of which, John had tons and tons of friends from around the world fly over for his special day – I was very impressed with the turnout. I guess it’s pretty hard to say no to a guy that probably cries every morning as he watches his toothpaste make a commitment to his toothbrush.

The speeches were followed by the first dance. Once again, that was entertaining to watch from afar with a beer. We had friends that were required to get involved, one of which clearly wanted to be anywhere else. He didn’t exactly have moves like Jagger. We watched in hysterics, as he kept shaking his head at us and rubbing his middle finger against his chin like an annoyed sibling that doesn’t want mum and dad to see.

Looking back on it, that was essentially the role Steve and I played throughout the entire event – standing side by side with a beer and laughing at our friends struggle their way through embarrassing wedding traditions. Weddings are pretty fun when there are no responsibilities!

We then finished the night off at a bar the couple had rented out, got even drunker and watched a couple of games from Euro 2016. It’s probably best not to talk football though, aye?

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