BULLGOOSE: The Man Who Stuttered Once

Everybody stutters under the right circumstances. Marriage proposals; righteous indignation; political weaseling, sticker shock etc, anything can set us off.

“Wha wha what? We’re pregnant?
“N n n n ooooo! Speed camera!”
“Forgot our anniversary? Y y y y you contemptible pig!”

Not so Elree “Roy” Broussard. I once witnessed an auctioneer, Tommy “Half Tongue” Marouchi, break the word count record, auctioning off 147 weaners in 58 seconds. This record was never officially recognised, because it was discovered that he’d accidentally left the cattle jigger in his back pocket switched on – thus goosing himself with 7000 volts of electrical assistance. Come to think of it, the twitching and rolled-back eyes were a dead giveaway.

That bloke was fast, but he had nothing on Roy. Announcements, observations, banter, declarations and even idle chat were all delivered at blistering speed. Do you often think about chooks? When I do it’s usually to wonder if they ever trip over, if they ever stumble and land flat on their little beaks. As a boy I’d chase them a bit to see whether I could trip them up. Never happened.

Same with Roy. Not the chook chasing. No matter how fast he spoke, even at full rant, he never stumbled, never stuttered.
Roy was a stalwart of the Bonalbo Rural Fire Brigade.
Community spirited, always eager to oblige, he was easy to be with.
OK, he was unnervingly fond of German marching bands and John Laws, but other than that, he was good company.

“Holy smokes, Bullgoose you’re a blinky big bloke are all your family big or is it just you? My family are all pipsqueaks pretty much, my son’s not much bigger than me but I tell you what, his wife, my daughter in law, she’s a big woman, a big woman, a blinky big, big woman they take her down to Gympie Railway station to weigh her.”

“What? Does she go voluntarily? What does she make of it?”

“She hops up on those scales, good as gold.”

“In the middle of the night? Not in front of everyone, surely.”

“Whenever she needs to, as required. She laughs about it – got the blinks sugar diabetes and all, but she keeps laughing likes a – laugh – heart of gold. Waves to the people on the blinky platform. Got onto John Laws about it once. He had a bit of a chuckle too, good bloke John Laws not like that Alan Jones – blinky sanctimonious bastard. Who made him Emperor of all Australia and didn’t tell us about it?”

“Anyhow, Roy, you’re looking pretty sharp. What’s that in your hair? Californian Poppy? Uppercut Manstyle gel?

“Nah, Copha.”


“Copha, blinky copha.”

“What? You been making chocolate crackles?”

“Nah, economical. Heard about it on John Laws coupla weeks ago. Just copha – melt it in a saucepan and stir in a coupla drops of peppermint essence or lemon essence or blinky vanilla if you like then pour it into a blinky Vegemite or peanut butter jar or a blinky gherkin jar or whatever and she’s ready to go.”

“Doesn’t it go off?”

“Nah. I tell you what goes off, the women, the women. One look at me, one whiff of the old peppermint and they faint. They faint at my blinky feet, too right they do.”

“Fancy that.”

Anyhow, about that stutter. That one stumble in Roy’s whole life.

We were in the fire truck climbing up the range near Drake headed for a big fire at Coonabarabran.
It was a slow grind, pedal to the metal but still losing revs.
Roy was keeping our spirits up with random, rapid commentary.

The car behind pulled out, overtook us then quickly pulled in front of us.

“Nice work, mate pull right in front of us what? You really think we want to kiss your blinky bum?Pull ahead, pull ahead, give us some blinky room. Can’t you tell we’re losing blinky revs? Overtake that truck in front and give us some blinky room come on you can do it you’ve got the power, you’re driving a, you’re driving a hy hy hy you’re driving a blinky hy hy hy a hy hy hy you’re driving a blinky Hy hy hy Hyundai!

Roy had stuttered. It was the one and only time. And we were there. We were blinky there.
Roy Broussard: gentleman, hair product trailblazer and singular stutterer.
A lesson to us all

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