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Your Pa Rum Pum Pum Pum is Sweet

December 3, 2012

The other day, with Christmas carols filling the car, Raleigh asked me to replay Little Drummer Boy. Her request – I sing the words, she sing the Pa Rum Pum Pum Pums.

And so began our duet.

I’ve sung it a million times, but that day, for the first time, I actually listened to the words.

I knew the basics –

King is born. Bring gifts. Honor him. Pa Rum Pum Pum Pum

And kinda knew the next part –

I’m poor. No King-worthy gift to bring. Can I drum? Pa Rum Pum Pum Pum

But here’s where my heart took over –

The ox and lamb kept time pa rum pum pum pum
I played my drum for Him pa rum pum pum
I played my best for Him pa rum pum pum pum rum pum pum pum rum pum pum pum
Then He smiled at me pa rum pum pum pum
me and my drum.

By “I played my best for Him” tears were streaming down my face. While the song itself has no biblical basis and originated from a Czech carol with loose connections to a 12th century French legend (per wikipedia), I was overcome with the feeling that it perfectly sums up the spirit of the season.

Sharing ourselves through our own Pa Rum Pum Pum Pum – that’s our true gift to give. Smile eliciting, animal dancing gift . What better way to honor the royals in our lives?

As we were going through our ornaments the other night, I found a cherished African boy drumming (a souvenir from our December 2000 visit to Senegal). Raleigh and I decided to (respectfully) add him to our collection of  nativity scenes from around the world, gifts from my mother-in-law over the years.

drummer boy at nativity

Seeing him there warms me. And I get teary every time I hear the song now. Especially the Johnny Cash version, with his slow, deliberate words.

May you march to the sweet beat of your drum this holiday season. Tie your unique Pa Rum Pum Pum Pum in a big bow and let it shine. What could be sweeter?


2 Comments leave one →
  1. Catherine permalink
    December 4, 2012 9:59 pm

    That song has the same affect on me – I love it and used to sing it to boys at Christmas bedtimes. About 4 yrs ago, Ric got into the habit of doing the pa rum pum pum’s and wound up working them into a crescendo and what sounded like a big drum solo – NOT what I was looking for to get bouncy boys to sleep. Boys still remember and laugh.

    Site is great, always, Kristi.

    • December 6, 2012 5:59 am

      Such a sweet story Catherine and I can so picture the boys and the drum solo! Perhaps a seed was planted – they both share their gifts with the world so freely, making so many of us smile. 🙂

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The Blog of Author Tim Ferriss

Tim Ferriss's 4-Hour Workweek and Lifestyle Design Blog. Tim is an author of 5 #1 NYT/WSJ bestsellers, investor (FB, Uber, Twitter, 50+ more), and host of The Tim Ferriss Show podcast (400M+ downloads)

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