By Brennan Vance

Fancy Ray McCloney is THE man about town. You might spot him behind a grocery store meat counter hawking fancy steaks. He might dazzle you with his fanciness at a comedy club. Perhaps you’ve glimpsed his likeness through the windows of a salon, where he gets his locks truly fancified. He’s pretty fancy on a unicycle or a modern penny-farthing – so it’s entirely possible you’ve seen him cruising along on a bike trail.

But like his idol, Muhammad Ali, Fancy Ray is a man of endless dimension; he exudes an electric combination of charisma, intellect, levity, profundity and charm – sometimes all at once. His energy is ecstatic, his mind is electric, his good cheer is infectious and his signature style is fancy. Very, very fancy. In short – and in his own words – he is “a human chocolate orchid.”

No matter where you’ve seen him before, the bedrock of the man who is Fancy Ray (yes, that’s his legal name) is built on comedy – did you see him in that Taco Bell commercial that aired during the Super Bowl? But just as swiftly as he can tell a joke or conjure up his past as the ultimate Little Richard impersonator, he’ll offer up the choicest words of wisdom that have ever landed in your sweet, little ears. After all, he might be Minnesota’s only entertainer who can claim to be both a student of philosophy (he majored in philosophy in college) AND a student of comedy (he’s worked with the likes of Richard Pryor and Chris Rock). As if that isn’t enough, he also moonlights as the Love and Laughter Wedding Officiant

His relationships, his professional life, his charity work, his glittery style are all manifestations of his dedication to living a happy and healthy life. So who better to offer up some sage advice about how to bring out your inner Fancy Ray than the man, himself. So without further adieu, here are his tips on living the good life:

  • Get your hair and nails done. “You’ve got to look good to feel good. And when you look good, you feel good.” True words. Before Fancy Ray goes anywhere – even to the grocery store – his hair and nails are on point. Consider that the ultimate syllogism of beauty from the only man you know who’s been mistaken for Michelle Obama.
  • Don’t leave home without your celery and cucumbers. Ever. And never forget to eat all the fruits and veggies you can muster. One day you, too, could be fancy like Fancy Ray.
  • Stay positive. “Be thankful for today.” Truly the essence of everything Fancy Ray commits himself to is rooted in a desire to make others feel good. He even made a bid for Governor in the 1998 election and ran on the People’s Champion Party ticket, with his mother as Lieutenant Governor, of course. 
  • Thou must exercise. Get on your unicycle! Or your penny-farthing! Or run around a lake! 
  • Consider your spiritual side. Find that connection to something bigger than yourself. “Everyone has a light. And my light recognizes your light – and together, we can make a flame. That flame is joy. That flame is love.”
  • Love! Laugh! Repeat! Fancy Ray may not be able to sing – but he can make your belly ache with laughter. And laughter is the surest conduit to vitality.

For a steady stream of all things Fancy Ray, follow along with @thefancyray on Instagram.