Sunday, August 27, 2006

A Name: It is there for Life!

I just got off the phone with my sister, who had spent the afternoon at a baby shower. Her friend is having a baby girl and they have narrowed their search down to two names; Keelin or Kassidy. Their first choice was JonBenet.

"Have you ever thought about the name JonBenet. It is such a pretty name, but if you think about it, no one can ever use that name again. Everyone would think you were crazy." My sister stated.

Our conversation turned to other names that people no longer use when naming a child. At the top of the list was Adolph, Lucifer, Damian & Jethro.

Our conversation reminded me of a family name that I liked when I was pregnant. My great grandfather's first name was "Bates". I think it is a unique and classy name, but every time it roles off of my tongue I think of the movie Psycho.

Names bring unusual reactions to most people. When I was pregnant my ob/gyn inquired, during one of my visits, if we had picked out any names. I told him we were considering Terra for a girl. He responded "you know if you name her that people will call her terror." Terra was soon moved to the bottom of our list.

I have a friend that detests unisex names. I on the other hand lean towards names such as Aaron, Jordan & Taylor. These names are perfect for a boy or girl, but with their current popularity I do find myself saying "boy Jordan or girl Jordan" when my kids are telling me a story about their friends.

I have another friend and she had two kids and married a man with two kids. They both had daughters named Brandi. People would call and ask to speak to Brandi & they would reply "blonde Brandi or brown Brandi." My friend said she always felt like a hillbilly and referred to the men in her household as Larry, Darrell and Darrell, just to keep up the commonality.

Lisa was a common name of the late 60's, so much so I graduated high school with 14 other girls named Lisa. When you have that many classmates with the same name & you hear it walking down the hall, you don't know whether to turn around or keep on going.

In the last few years it seems Hollywood has gotten into parenthood and the stars are choosing names that are not traditional in every sense of the word. For example Charlie Sheen & Denise Richards named their baby Lola Sheen. Does her name remind you of a strip club marquee or make you think he was reliving his Heidi Fleis days?

A name can even generate big bucks or big blockbusters if you are in Hollywood. The movies Meet the Parents and it's sequel Meet the Fockers were based entirely on jokes revolving around the main characters name of Gaylord Focker.

Names are facinating they affect every aspect of ones life. They determine if a child will be teased on the playground and if they will be successful in the business world. When John Handcock's parents named him, I bet they never thought he would change history and that his name would become a commonly used phrase.

Like my sisters friends: When we name our children are we naming a baby or are we picking a name that will impact a generation? You just never know!


Anonymous World Peace Religion said...

What's wrong with Jethro?

11:55 AM  
Blogger Andrew said...

You're right, context is everything with a name. My 13-year-old daughter once told me she liked the name Damian, so I had to tell her about the movie connection. But before hearing about the context, the name by itself appealed to her.

To Love, Honor and Dismay

7:53 AM  

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