Greetings from Harry McLaughlin
For intriguing insights into the lives of the Victorians and Edwardians, open my family photo album by clicking the notice alongside.
The album flipbook includes an account of the wartime adventures of one of the first Red Cross nurses, my great-grandaunt Louisa.*
McLaughlin family secrets are revealed in our annotated family tree (view it in Internet Explorer to see hyperlinks).
It traces two lines of descent from England's King Edward I all the way down to cousin Guy Ritchie and his ex-wife Madonna.
I am an English retired octogenarian
psychologist now living in Bel Air, California.
I grew up in London's Royal Borough of Kensington and was educated at the Lycée Français de Londres until the war broke out when I was ten.
After that I went to Cheltenham College (I am wearing the old school tie in the photograph).
But my family could not afford to give me a higher education, so I became a journalist.
I was a Daily Mirror subeditor. In my last years with the newspaper (which had the world's largest daily paid circulation, 4,000,000 — until I left!) I worked weekends, then commuted 150 miles from London to Sheffield University. After obtaining a BA, I gained a PhD in experimental psychology from University College London while lecturing at the City University, London.
A year later I was appointed Associate Professor of Human Communication Theory at the University of Syracuse, and was a consultant to NASA.
Afterwards I became Associate Professor of Computer Applications at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education.
While in Toronto I went to prison — employed as a clinical psychologist, and became a Diplomate of the American Board of Medical Psychologists. This enabled me to go into private practice as a neuropsychologist and psychotherapist after I married in 1980 and moved to California.
My wonderful wife Liliane died in 2009: please read the obituary of this exceptional lady who earned President Clinton's praise.
Visitors to our home used to enjoy looking at our lovely antique secretaire. In 2006 we gave it to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art so that everybody could enjoy it. But now nobody can because LACMA keeps it locked in storage. However you can discover its many secret drawers.
I have crossed the Sahara and the Congo, trekked in the Himalayas and cruised in the Antarctic. Of the more than 100 countries in which I have traveled my favorites are Bali and Tibet.
I enjoy theater, television direct from the BBC, Benny Hill and similar broad comedy, Wagnerian opera, surrealist art, museums of all kinds, computers, reading, conversation, and gourmet food. I am stimulated by novel ideas, many gained in graduate seminars in the sciences and humanities at UCLA where I have twice been appointed as a Visiting Scholar.
I am a member of the Prometheus Hi-IQ Society. I live up to my family motto: I keep my promises.
I am the proud father of Alison Kay McLaughlin, MSc., Diplomate of the American Board of Toxicology. She is Head of Health Canada's Environmental Assessment Unit. Trained in marine biology, Alison used to do research for the Canadian Wildlife Service and the World Wildlife Fund.
Please listen to my professional voiceover
And here is my reading of John Donne's aubade The Sun Rising.
I have also made a couple of brief videos. The first illustrates Sonnet 116 by Shakespeare or, as I prefer to think, by my ancestor Lord de Vere. I recite the poem in the Received Pronunciation of today's Queen's English and in that of Queen Elizabeth I.
The other video illustrates Wedding by one of Britain's leading poets, Alice Oswald, the wife of my cousin Peter Oswald, who was for years the playwright in residence at London's Globe Theatre.
You may contact me at ghmcla at gmail dot com.
* Click each title to download my annotated versions of books co-authored by Louisa:
Our Adventures During the War of 1870
Service in Servia
Under the Red Cross