Category Archives: Crowd Control





“Don’t talk; write!” the voice said.

“Who was that?” I asked, aloud.

I was seated at a bus stop, thinking about and wondering how I had come to a point in my life where speaking my thoughts aloud was now a norm.

I often add voice to  my private, mental meanderings, not bothering to convert to a more private mode when transitioning into a world beyond Lee Broom Studio.

On the bus now, a lady looked my way with a touch of fear on her attractive sixty-ish face. I smiled  and told her I spent most of my time alone and that my habit of noisy self-talk actually had its roots during adolescent years when I lived in my own small house previously built for a maid at the Broom Estate.

I apologized for frightening her.

She replied that I had not scared her at all;  she  was afraid of the day when her own very private habit so very much like my own, would emerge in public, beyond the safety of her own front door.

“Do you live around here?” I asked.

Her condo was five doors east of mine.

“I live there also” added another rider; “I’m on the third floor near the elevator.”



At VA yesterday morning there was a guy in the hallway strumming chords with some great sevenths for occasional surprises.

He’s always there. People stop to listen but rarely leave any cash. Inspired for some reason, I started whistling improv – jazz lines blending beautifully even when Mr. Guitar – Man erred.

I used to be one of the best whistlers ever till I started repairing my teeth. Somehow the wind from my lungs uber-reacts with these dental changes in a new and different way, usually in an unfriendly, non-musical manner that gives me the shivers.

I had thus forgotten my talent but for some reason it returned this morning. Together Mr. Guitar-man and Bobby Lee Spike Oaks Broom drew quite a crowd.

When my notes eventually began to fail me I started singing Allen Toussaint – style scat riffs and carried the Guitar Man’s hat around for money. We got a few tens – lots of fives and singles. When I handed him his hat, his lips started moving and his hands started signing. He took the money but someone told me later he wasn’t doing this for financial gain; his music is his gift to the Vets.  He was once a professional jazz singer – songwriter – musician. A throat injury in a Middle East conflict took his voice. I still don’t know what his stage name was.