The American actress Winona Ryder (real name Winona Laura Horowitz) was named after her birthplace, Winona, Minnesota. The name Ryder is said to have come from a Mitch Ryder album.
In the words of her godfather, the late Dr Timothy Leary, Ryder is the daughter of "hippie intellectuals and psychedelic scholars". Cindy Horowitz (nee Palmer) was a WASB (White Anglo-Saxon Buddhist) while Michael Horowitz was of Russian and Romanian Jewish descent. His family's original name had been Tomchin. The couple's other children are called Sunyata, Yuri, and Jubal. The young Winona had an unusual upbringing. Her father ran a bookshop called Flashback Books and was a friend of the poet Allen Ginsberg. Her parents collaborated on a book about Aldous Huxley's psychedelic experiences, and later on another about Louisa May Alcott and opium. When she was seven, they joined a farm commune in the town of Elk, California, where they bred horses. There was no television, but Winona's mother ran a barn cinema. After a year, the family moved on to Petaluma. As a teenager, Winona Horowitz had an androgynous image and when she was seventeen she got severely beaten up and dropped out of high school. She later enrolled in acting classes at San Francisco's American Conservatory Theater. A talent scout there got her a screen test which led to her being represented by Triad Artists, who began to find her movie roles, beginning with Edward Scissorhands.
Ryder has dated actors Matt Damon, Daniel Day-Lewis, Johnny Depp, David Duchovny, Jimmy Fallon, Chris Noth, Gary Oldman, and Christian Slater, as well as musicians Ryan Adams, Evan Dando, Adam Duritz, David Grohl, Page Hamilton, Beck Hansen, Stephan Jenkins, Jay Kay, Rhett Miller, Conor Oberst, David Pirner, Jack White, and Pete Yorn. In the wise words of Miquel Brown, "So many men, so little time."