My middle son and his friend Ray went all through grade school together. After we moved to Kansas in 1991, Ray spent a semester of his junior year living with us as an unofficial high school “exchange student.” Ray was always provocative. In first grade, he provoked my son into yelling a vulgar compound word on the playground that caused my wife grief because she handles embarrassing family situations. He provoked a Wichita high school into creating a formal Sex Harassment policy for the first time. I cannot elaborate because my wife handled that situation. I did recommend she remind Ray that we could drive him to the airport and put him on an airplane back to Seattle on a moment’s notice. I remember wishing I had that option for my three sons. Once I headed out for a run dressed like I was going skiing because the roads had snow and ice on them. He wanted to come with me in bare feet, long pants, and a tee shirt. I called his bluff, thinking he would turn back within a hundred yards. He won that dare by jogging several miles with me. Ray has four younger brothers and the youngest one just had a son. Ray’s mother says Ray promised to pay for the boy’s college expenses if he was named after him. Middle name was not good enough. So Ray is now uncle to Raymond and has already opened a bank account for him. If only I had known years ago. Surely my wife would have agreed to auction off naming rights for our sons in exchange for prepaid college expenses. I would have been happy with sons named Pepsi, Chevrolet, and Rolaids. Of course we would call them Pepe, Chevy, and Rollie.


22 thoughts on “Raymond

    1. I love to read academic treatises where sweeping generalizations are made by people who resent sweeping generalizations. It’s good to know academia still values trendiness over scholarship if it’s marketable. This woman will end up in Admin for a community college district directing people with true content degrees. Scary.


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