My girlfriend Kim Bowen was born in London and went to St. Martins College of Art and Design, the Harvard of England’s artistic community. From there, she became a writer/critic for London’s fashion press and a regular at The Blitz, which was like NYC’s Club 54 where the young and cool thought they were reinventing […]
Author Archive: Michael Ray
Encountering Nature’s Force My kids and I are off on a weeklong rafting trip through the Grand Canyon on the mighty Colorado River. I have done it a half dozen times and love it. I take the “luxury” experience (yeah, right) on a big, sturdy raft that holds up to 15 people and has two […]
The thing about conservative Republicans is they are great haters. They are great at standing up to the foe, declaring war, wagging it with savagery and then stomping all over their slain opponent. Democrats parse it to death. Is he really such a bad guy? Doesn’t some of what he says make sense? Is it […]
Homeostasis “…is the property of a system that regulates its internal environment and tends to maintain a stable, constant condition…” The planet Earth is a classic homeostatic system. It tends toward stability, which in scientific terms is called “stasis.” It also is a host, which by definition means it tolerates, is a home to […]
The Next Generation’s Woodstock Two of my three kids attended the Coachella Music Festival this year, and the third would have too, but she was in college in London. In one earlier year, she got away with pretending to need to be in So Cal during the time of the festival, and then—oops—as long as […]
The Ranters When I first thought about this column, I wanted it to be a rant about my seemingly endless Facebook friends who have gone off their rockers in rants of their own or send me endless email rants. And all with the particularly vicious purity of true believers. But I cannot work myself […]
The Reawakening Laguna Beach used to be a gay Mecca. We had our own goodly district of gay bars, restaurants and clubs. Then time and local demographics changed that and now the Mecca has moved. It went mostly to Palm Springs. Palm Spring’s reached its height of pre-gay notoriety between 1950-70, when actors […]
Tour of Duty: Personal and Political Last Sunday at Newport Harbor yacht club, about 25 of us gathered to board the Soluna, my brother’s 52” motorboat and spread ashes at sea. They were of my former wife’s father, Les. Like my own father, Les had suffered the torments of a long, lingering diabetes death. […]
Code Words I was at CdM High School during the 1960s race riots in America. There were almost nightly scenes of black people on TV being fire-hosed. Or attack dogs set on them. Or being beaten by police with batons, arrested, put on buses to jail. Or soldiers would guard them as they attempted […]
My father was one of seven kids from Kansas. During the Great Depression, he got married and the next day took the freights West. There he eventually joined the Coast Guard and at the end of WW II ended up in Newport Beach. He did well in real estate and luckier yet, did not lose it back during one of the many down cycles.
He and Mom lived full and good lives, and their kids, we four plus one foster brother, still are going strong. Our foster brother, Gary, came from a broken family and joined us at the age of 16.
At Christmas, I no longer am sure who my whole family is. Yes, I know it includes my brothers and sisters and their offspring and their offspring too. But it is more than that. My former wife lives near me in Laguna and our children navigate between us in a manner that works for all concerned. During holidays it can be tricky, but we all accommodate one another and go to the same music recitals together.
Beyond Posh First, the disclosure: I am a personal mess. My clothes are of no discernable style. My shoes are scruffy and sometimes do not match. My hair is uncombed. My home in Laguna is a mish-mash of styles, junk, discarded objects never thrown away, paintings that belong on some other wall, chairs with battered […]