Fancy Ray McCloney was such a self-sufficient toddler that he potty-trained himself.
That’s the most unfathomable morsel I gleaned from his mom, Toni McCloney, because I’ve never thought of “The Best Lookin’ Man in Comedy” as actually being house broken.
Interviewing Fancy Ray’s mom was great fun. We talked about his hair, him getting engaged and the root of his style. Some of it comes from her closet. Some of came from her dad, the original “Fancy” in the family.
“My father was a fancy dresser and they called him Fancy Wade. So Ray took the name Fancy after my father,” she said. “Yeah, [Ray] was a copy cat. But he wears it proudly.”
Of course, the copy cat one-upped Grandpa by legally adding the prefix “Fancy” to his name.
Toni McCloney believes her son has transcended the world of comedy and become “an entertainer.” He’s most definitely a character, and what he’s been posting on social media has made him the subject of a TPT 2 long-form “Minnesota Original.” It’s available only on digital right now, but the station says it will air in May or June.
“This is the best Fancy Ray documentary you’re ever gonna see!” Fancy Ray insisted. No need. I know too much about you, I told Fancy Ray, who began laughing boisterously because he gets a kick out of me checking his ego.
Here’s what his mom had to say:
Q: What kind of little boy was Ray?
A: Ray was the type of child [who] had to do everything himself. He taught himself to use to the potty. I didn’t have to potty train him.
Q: What would his fifth-grade teacher say about him?
A: She would say he was the type of kid [who] would learn even if he didn’t go to school.
Q: What career did you expect him to pursue?
A: I knew whatever it would be, it would take brains. This [going into comedy] kind of threw me off guard. But he loved that limelight of a star and getting attention ... He always did things to get your attention because he’s smart.
Q: Did you have to spank him much as a child?
A: No, not really. He was a pretty good kid. He was jealous of his [older] brother, James. They were very close in age, so he had to outdo James. Which he did. James was born with a build people died for, and Ray didn’t have it. Ray worked on his muscles until he had it.
Q: This is not a question about your age. I am asking what will Fancy Ray be like when he is your age?
A: He will still be the life of the party. Very flamboyant.
Q: Does Ray come to you to help him with his hair or does he do it on his own?
A: He pays someone. They’re well paid ... He’s doing the best he can with what he has.
Q: Did he play in your jewelry box much?
A: No. He didn’t become interested in the items that I purchased for me until he got into comedy. Then he literally went in my closet and took my stuff. He didn’t ask. He figured I had worn it enough, it’s his now.
Q: Fancy Ray has a fiancée now. Should he get married?
A: I think at his age he’d better do it quick if he plans on it doing it. He can’t find too many people [who] want him at his age.
Q: Does he make you address him as “The Best Lookin’ Man in Comedy”?
A: No. [Rollicking laughter] I would ask, “How can you turn up your mouth and say that?”
C.J. can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and seen on Fox 9’s “Buzz.” E-mailers, please state a subject; “Hello” does not count.