Monday, July 5, 2010

Whaat's In A Naame?

In a desperate effort to make their kids “unique”, parents are pulling out all the stops when it comes to naming their children.

In a certain sense, I kind of understand it. My wife and I named our daughter a fairly uncommon name… but not one I would classify as “weird” per se.

There are three types of ways to name your children, I’ll list them from least annoying to so freakin' annoying that it makes me want to rip off my buttocks. Let’s visit these naming faux pas shall we?

1. Slightly changing the spelling of the name

You run into this quite often. I have a friend who named their daughter “Kortney”. And as I just wrote her name right now the spell check on my computer marked her name with a red squiggly line below it indicating that I spelled it wrong. I would have spelled it “Courtney” personally… but they wanted it with a “K” and that’s cool.

The only problem with this is that the wide majority of people are going to spell it wrong when sending you mail, entering you into wet t-shirt contests and filling out your application for parole. This is probably annoying for the person with the name because they constantly have to correct the person spelling their name or just deal with the fact that their name is just going to be misspelled half the time.

But… it’s all in who’s doing the spelling of the name too. My first name is subject to interpretation on how to spell it. “Chris” can be spelled any number of ways: Cris, Kris, Khris or even Chriss. I’ll get any number of these spellings when people transcribe my name when I think that C-H-R-I-S is probably the most common way to spell my name.

So, while a slight changing of the typical spelling of a name is a little annoying, it’s not something to lose your bladder over.

2. Naming Them A Name Never Before Heard In The Annals Of Time

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What will Gwyneth's next kids name be? Peach Pit? Raisen? Prune?

Gwyneth Paltrow named her kid “Apple”. I’ve heard of other names like “Cloud”, “Rainbow”, “Fruitstand”, “Bird”, “Moon”, “Camera” and “Dweezil”. What the Mother Eff? I understand a kid should be given their own individuality but why give them a name that people are going to laugh at then roll their eyes and instantly understand that their parents were either famous movie stars, hippies, gangsters or named their kid somewhere around 4:20 in the afternoon.

You could even take it a step further and name your kids “Adolf Hitler” and “Arian Nation” like this super-douche.

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Awwww... Hi there Adolf Hitler... what a cute name! How did your raging douchebag father come up with that one?

To be fair… if God had given us a little boy and not a girl… I really wanted to name him “Ca$h”. Literally with the “$” instead of the “s”. But this post isn’t about me…

3. Absolutely, Completely And Totally Effing Up The Proper Spelling Of The Name Just So It Will Confuse People

I have the dubious distinction at my work of having to call and confirm about 350 consultants and their addresses for our annual Christmas mailings. Part of this responsibility is making sure there isn’t anyone left off of our mailing list. A recent conversation with the receptionists at one of these businesses went something like this:

“Hi, my name is Chris with I Just Blew Out My Anus AV Company (yes… that is not the name of the company I work for) and I’m just calling around to confirm some names on our Christmas mailing list before we send all of them out. I just want to make sure the names we have are people who still work there. Can I run through them with you real quick?” I said.

She obliged and I ran through my short list of names I had for their company.

After I’m done with that I have to say, “Now… is there anyone that I didn’t name that should get our mailing?”

She replied, “Yes, you forgot Karen Taylor”.

My idiot mind just assumed that it was spelled as I just spelled it above. I assured the receptionist I would add Karen and started my graceful exit from the phone call. Before I could get through the end of my spiel she interrupted me and said, “Don’t you want to know how to spell her name?”

“What, ‘Taylor’?” I said.

“No, ‘Karen’”.

I spelled it out, “K-A-R-E-N?”

“No actually it’s spelled K-A-A-R-I-N”.

I had to repeat the spelling back to her several times just to make sure I got it right. “Kaarin” is how she spelled “Karen”. I held back my frustration at Kaarin’s parents until I got off the phone then I made a vow to find them someday and ask them, “why”… right before I slapped them across the face with armadillo roadkill. Why would you purposefully misspell your kids name? Unlike “Chris” that can be spelled “Cris”, “Kris”, or at worst Khris… there aren’t really many other routes to go with “Karen” unless you go off the deep end with “Kaarin” or maybe “Care-In” or “Cuhairen”. Kaarin is forever destined to have to misinform people on the correct spelling of her name which should be “Karen”.

That’s not being unique or different… that’s just being annoying to everyone involved.


So… if you’re thinking of naming your kid “Sttepfanny” instead of “Stephanie”, “Fillup” instead of “Phillip”, “Cayteah” instead of “Katie”, “Jellybean Ass Face” instead of “Eddie” or “Crapinajar” instead of “Bill”… please don’t. Please don’t because the only person that thinks it’s cool is you.

Come visit me at my home: Hands To War.

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Inferno said...

I love unique names, but it has certainly gone to far.
Especially the stupid spellings of semi normal names.

Momma Sunshine said...

Dude...sometimes people just want to stand out a little bit.

(This coming from me with kids whose names are perfectly normal and spelled exactly the way you'd expect them to be...)

Raquel's World said...

Or don't you love the names that are spelled "normal" but pronounced differently. Like who the hell would know that?

Beryl said...

My mom named me after a ship. Yeah. Actually it's a pretty name, especially for a grownup, but as a kid? also rhymed with every blessed thing. Yes, naming a kid is a tricky thing to do is look at it as much from the person who will be bearing your self expression.

Trooper Thorn said...

I favor a series of letters and digits myself.

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

I am one of those people you despise. I like to spell my kids' names all crazy like.

You're. Welcome.

Not a soccer mom said...

I have two comments.

First, my own name (which my parents found when watching a Vegas show and seeing a -then famous- actress) is hard to pronounce and spell. It is just 5 simple letters. Shani. Pronounced like rainy. It can be spelled any number of ways. And the first day of class was horrible for a shy kid.
But I do adore it.
Second comment is that as this country becomes more and more a melting pot of many cultures, there are and will be more and more new uncommon american names.
Gwenyth's daughter Apple stems from the French who think it good luck to use names of fruit when naming their babies.

UP said...

After teaching school for seven years, I've heard them all. Then, you meet the parents, and it all makes sooooooo muuuuuuch seeeeense!


The Texas Trio said...

I have head of Vagina (pronounced va-GEE-na) and Shithead (pronounced SHA-theed). But the ones that take the cake came out of Texas, Ima Hogg.

Deb said...

I've always thought it would be funny to name a kid "Thomas", but spell it "William". When taking attendance..."William...William...?" "um...actually, it's pronounced THOMAS". Just to show the stupidity that is parents naming kids nowadays.

Anonymous said...

My mothers name is Teryl.
Yes it's pronounced like Beryl or Meryl but with a T.It came from a fabric on her baby clothes(that my grandparents got before she was born)Terraline or something like that so they named her Teryl Lynn.Yes my grandparents are weird but not hippies since my mom was born in the 50's.
My two brothers and I all have normal names because of that.She would get called Teryl Barrel(or Beryl if you will) and also teased for her last name.

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