Tag Archives: joy

Music makes everything better First posted on May 5, 2012

Tricias thirty day challenge day 9

Happy Birthday to My Son. His name is Bill.

When my son was a child (he’s a grandfather now), he and I enjoyed taking long, evening walks together during the summer months. When we began this tradition we found we had little to say to each other. Remarkably, we stuck it out, eventually discovering some very creative ways of entertaining ourselves and each other. One evening as we walked, Bill picked up a stick along the way. The discarded piece of lumber was as long as he was tall, (smaller than a one by four and larger than a one by two); I don’t remember how tall he was but he was six or seven years old. We had just arrived in Phoenix from Oklahoma City and everything we did, Bill and I and his sisters Mary and Dixie and his mother, was an adventure of the best kind.

As we approached a metal light pole, Bill raised his stick like a bat and creeping up as if to attack an unsuspecting animal standing there waiting to become dinner, Bill swung the stick and with a resounding ring, the vibration of which traveled back up the stick and through the bones in his small body, landed him squarely on the sidewalk. The greatest stress to my boy was the surprise of an inanimate object fighting back. The second was to the ulna of his right arm with considerable pain centering in the wrist. I removed my shirt and then my tee-shirt, put the outer layer back on, cut and tore the tee into three-inch wide strips using a 200-year old knife that had lived in the pockets of several generations of Broom men, wrapping the resulting field bandage around his wrist. When I picked up the stick, Bill told me in a very firm tone that I should give it to him and I obeyed.

We walked on. He hit the next pole more gently; we listened to the musical tone that resulted from the blow and I reproduce the musical note with my vocal chords. By the time we returned home Bill’s wrist was swollen and we had arrived singing a melody made of the notes that had erupted from the vibrating light poles that my pole playing son had produced with his pole bat.

On the next walk we sang that melody until memorized and eventually created a silly set of lyrics; no need for ASCAP membership yet but it was a lot of fun.






Posted in Memories. Tagged humongous, learning, love, mind, Phoenix.



Lee in Paradise

At the peak of my ten-K days I had two jogging buddies who accompanied me on evening runs though usually I ran alone at dawn. Those early runs were five to ten miles long, depending on my schedule. I didn’t want to place that kind of burden on my small companions.

These pals of mine were Frank and Nako.

Frank, a black toy poodle who never had to worry about getting a sissy-cut, was named after St Francis of Assisi. He was stoically silent when I rescued him from the pound and completely unaware of my presence. This curly-headed little critter seemed to be much more interested in the huge, dark, big-dog stool near the back of his cell. It had apparently been contributed by a previous tenant. I was informed by the doggie warden that when this little guy was first discovered running the streets of Phoenix, he was wearing a mute collar. He was arrested and interred and sentenced to death in a gas chamber unless someone adopted him before his ninety day appointment with the county canine killer arrived.  

“If you don’t mind” I implored, “would you bring him around and introduce us, please?”

Instant friends, I took Frank home to present as a birthday present to Terri. When introduced to Terri and Nako the family kitty Nako was ready for war. Terri picked her up and held her in her left atm, and at her request I placed Francis in her right arm. The hissing continued. Terri wasn’t at all impressed and established a routine of taking the mismatched family members for a walk each evening, one in each arm until the hissing stopped; eventually Frank and Nako became inseparable.

One evening as Frank and Terri and I started across a busy intersection we heard a strange cat sound from about a hundred feet to our rear.  Meow ow ow ow, Meow ow ow ow. It was Nako (Japanese for cat). Nako was Terri’s pet. Offensively independent, this strange animal and I were becoming very attached to each other.  The three of us turned to investigate. Each long meow which sounded more like a howl was interrupted every time one of Nako’s paws hit the pavement. Meow ow ow ow.

She was apparently stating her refusal to be left behind and demanding to be part of the team. Very assertive, this kitty; she never experienced the tethered restraint but she would soon demonstrate that she knew exactly what to do.  We waited for her to join us.

A year or so later we sold our Phoenix home and moved to Scottsdale. On our first evening in our new environment, Terri and I left Frank and Nako locked in the back yard after having jogged next to us daily for more than two years. This was our first evening in our new home and Terry had resumed our evening habit. Being in a strange neighborhood and respectful of the new pet control rules contained in the CC & R’s we decided to go it alone this first evening. Five minutes from home we heard this heart-rending doggie howl that just had to be Frank. We ran back home and opened the gate and in one and three-quarter seconds I had a wiggly armful of doggie as Frank leaped through the air like a refugee from an acrobatic dog act with a weekend Gypsy Circus. Nako greeted Terri by rubbing against her legs, purring like a buzz saw and we all enjoyed a brief reunion. Frank was no longer mute. His voiced approval and disapproval of every family event took some getting used to.

A year later Nako and Frank and I were jogging on the Scottsdale Country Club golf course, late at night; Terri who was no longer part of the team and homesick for a previous way of life had returned to familiar climes.

As we ran, geysers suddenly erupted and Nako was blasted by the full force of a stream of water meant to arc over a twenty-foot span. Nako was only a foot from the sprinkler head when it struck and was knocked five feet through the air. She hit the ground running and disappeared, never to return. Or so I thought.

Some months later I was entertaining former  team-member Terri, who was asking me about our Big City Kitty. As I was telling her the story we heard a familiar sound.

Meow ow ow ow, Meow ow ow ow. Nako looked as though she hadn’t eaten in a month. Our returning family member went to the three of us individually, purring like a buzz saw. For a minute or so as Teri and I smiled at the two pets began to communicate with their noses and poses and purring and soft little doggie barks.

I miss them. I really do. I live in a condo; . I jog on a treadmill. Maybe someday, I’ll buy an iguana.




kid artist


Entertainment is a major priority in life.

Anything with a nervous system yearns to have fun.

Animals don’t smile with their faces but who can mistake the joy of the family dog when the family comes home for the evening or the purr of a kitten or the baby who has learned to laugh?

Those of us who fail to get our share of joy and
laughter may eat or drink ourselves into near sedation; we watch an imaginary world flash before us on large screen TV or we go to the mall – anything to be entertained.

And then one day we become the entertainer, the child laughs as we punch the laughter button,  the family dog leaps with delight as we enter the room, the Love of our Life has a bigger smile than usual because of something we said with enthusiasm in our voice and the world is suddenly better, our waistline relaxes as the need for a drink or a handful of cookies is forgotten and the sun comes up in the East.

And we say
to ourselves, “Wowie – Zowie – Leapin’ Wolliwogers, what’s going on here”?

And we began to seek new opportunities to entertain someone; we are eager to say to anyone who will listen, “you won’t believe what just happened……….”

Lee Broom.


lafayette compound 012



Entertainment is a major priority in life; anything with a nervous system yearns to have fun.”

Animals don’t smile with their faces but who can mistake the joy of the family dog when the family comes home for the evening or the purr of a kitten or the baby who has learned to giggle.

Those who miss the joy and laughter, eat or drink ourselves into near sedation; we watch an imaginary world flash before us on large screen TV, we go to the mall and we become watchers.

And then one day we become the entertainer, a child laughs as we punch the laughter button and we laugh along with her and the memory of a sad event becomes nought  but a shadow;  the family dog leaps with delight as we enter the room and we know we are important , the Love of our Life has a bigger smile than usual because of something we said with unmeasured  enthusiasm and the world is suddenly better; our abdominal muscles relax as the need for a drink is forgotten and the sun comes up in the East  and we ask our inquisitive self ”“ what just happened.??? I can’t believe what just happened…”.

And you look for additional  opportunities to entertain someone; you are eager to say to anyone who will listen, “you won’t believe what just happened…” But you don’t because as you look around at the happy faces, you know that they know and you do whatever comes next.


Lee Broom


lafayette compound 012


Re post from 5 25 2012

A moment ago I observed something on my patio, unseen before by these tired old eyes. I will be having eye surgery on Tuesday. If this is an omen of better things to come I am prepared for that, I think.

If in fact, I lose that eye and am left only with the one that is splattered with glaucomic fields of grey, then I shall endeavor always to remember this tiny baby birdlet who ran across my white-tiled patio, bumping into the glass door, quickly recovering to race back on those strong, spindly legs to its Gamble Quail mom.

I saw it all, I did.

The family of Mom plus Five minus Pop was suddenly minus one quintuplet in response to the roar of the early morning trash hauler as it lifted its load higher than any member of this quail family would ever fly. Mom and the fully focused four scrambled toward the hedge as their tiny sibling shot in my direction. I scrambled for my camera with skills yet unlearned. When I looked back, the little 2 inch high fluffy-feathered goblin was slipping under Mummy’s wing.

If I can still see on Wednesday I shall investigate the Scottsdale library stacks in search of advice for late-blooming photographers.

Lee Broom