Monday, August 17, 2009

Is It Temporary Insanity?

What is it with these nut job names people are giving their kids these days? Where did this competition come from - you know, the one to see who can make up a name that sounds the most like it describes some alien species . . . or inanimate object . . . or disease . . .

I can kind of understand where the parents are coming from. I mean, they are (mostly) from my generation (and it feels sooooooooooo wrong to even type that!!), and I remember what it was like in elementary school. There was Sara M. and Sara R. and Sarah K. . . . Ashly G. and Ashley L. and Ashlee J. . . . Scott V. and Scott Q. and Scott Z. . . . or whatever. I always felt bad for those kids, and was glad I had an uncommon - yet heard of! - name. Then we moved to Utah . . . and all of the sudden my graduating class had Lacey B., and Lacy R., and Laci W., and another Lacee W.! When three of us were in the same history class one trimester junior year . . . nightmare!! Thankfully, instead of going the elementary school route, we became Lacey, Lacy Jo (not me . . . I got that nickname my senior year . . . ), and Laci Lynn. And while none of them were in our ward, I was still the third Lacey there. And there was a lot of confusion in sacrament just after the Jenson family moved in. On their second or third Sunday - before a lot of people knew who they were - Lacey Jenson was called to be in YW . . . and our second counselor had to explain that there was a new family in our ward, and that no, we had not just sustained his nine-year-old daughter as the MM advisor! (Although it is interesting to think that people would have done it, apparently . . . ) On the plus side, it's not a common name in Washington . . . or at least it wasn't when I was born . . . so I tell people the town of Lacey, Washington was named after me. :-) It's even more believable when you see how close it is to Puyallup.

So, yeah. I totally know what it's like when EVERYONE has your name. But I'm not sure my fellow Millenials are going about solving the problem the right way. I mean, these names are just so outlandish! Back in March I subbed in nursery one week. There was Hacken (long a), Kaycen, Ava, and Tracken (short a). Dude, looking at those names I wouldn't even dare to guess whether they're boys or girls! Well, except for Ava, but only because that one's getting popular. Ava is totally the new Brittany. Just like Emma is the new Ashley. Whoops! Messed that one up, didn't we guys.

Then there's the poor child Ashli told me about. (side note: Mom really was just as bad as the rest of her generation. We all got really common names, just with unusual spelling. Good thing Khrystyne is Shay's middle name!!!! Imagine having that butchered all your life!!!) Anyway, Ash says she worked with a little girl this past year named L-a. Yep, that's spelled correctly. Elle-hyphen-eh. Wanna guess how you pronounce it? Anybody? Bueller? "Ledasha." Now who on earth is gonna get that one right the first time, unless they've been warned in advance or something? Seriously?! That's just cruel. Here's hoping the kid changes her name the day she turns eighteen.

I really feel for the little girl who started kindergarten the year I was a reading tutor in college. Her name is Princess. Yep. you read that right. Given name, on the birth certificate. Princess. Come on, people!! Yeah, I can totally see not wanting to use Sara, it is pretty common. But seriously, there's a lot of other names out there that mean princess, and some of them are really pretty. It's not like she was born in the '60s or something . . . she was born in 2000! Y2K, internet, anyone? I just did a baby name search that took me, like, ten seconds, and look what I got for substitutes for Sara: Almirah (Arabic), Hara (Hebrew), Sadie, Sari, Sarina, and Suri (Hebrew . . . Henrew has TONS of names for princess!!). I wouldn't recommend Suri to anybody though. Tom Cruise aside, heaven help any girl with that name if her school ever puts on "Oklahoma!"

What about the pretty "old-fashioned" names that nobody uses any more? Like Mary or Esther or Alice or Margaret. One of my visiting teachers has a daughter named Hazel Pearl - how cute a name is that?!?

Granted, using old names has its risks. Right after I became a trainer at Disney there were two new trainees coming in at LMA (Lights, Motors, Action! . . . I really should do the glossary . . . ) by the names of Edith and Fanny. One of our co-ordinators joked that we were probably getting a couple of sweet little old white-haired ladies. Well, she got the sweet part right. The trainees I met the next day were two adorably sweet girls on the International College Program. Edith was from Mexico, and Fanny from France. I still miss them. :-( But seriously, people should be working on making names like that mainstream again instead of making up these stupid fake names!

I already have a handful names I like picked out. They're uncommon, but they are most definitely REAL names. No one can say I don't practice what I preach! :-)

P. ost S. cript
Speaking of unusual names . . . but she gets a pass for names, because it's probably Alaskan, and it's her last name. Last names are generally weird. No pass for stupidity though . . . just amusement at her expense.


  1. You read this, right?

    And Ava's an old name...Ava Gardner, anyone?

  2. I would like to think this post is attributed to my status on Facebook...even if it's not, let me believe it is. And come on L-a is not THAT bad...NOT!

  3. Okay, I'll give you Ava. It just seems to fit with the rest because of the whole obscurity-to-popularity thing. And I've met two other girls who spelled their name Tawnya too . . . crazy, no?

  4. I think Ava is just one of the normal older ones that get popular in cycles. It just happened to coincide with the crazies.

    There are 3 or 4 Tawnya (my last name)'s on facebook. Spelled Tawnya. Just so...weird. I've seen the spelling more as I get older, but I still think it's complicated!

  5. Shot in the dark, but would I be correct in guessing which name it is that still drives you nuts? :-) I'm pretty sure I am since there's really only one that's waaaaay out there . . .

  6. Well, there's really two. One in your family and one in another. But, yes, your mother's crazy spelling of Kristine is the one I was referencing!

  7. So, Tawnya, do any of my kids have a name that drives you nuts?

    We have a couple in our ward that just had their 4th child but first boy. Their girls all have normal names- Savanna, Mariah, I don't remember the other one. We were all puzzled by the boy's name. Tiger. Really. I have no idea and the mom and I don't get along so I didn't ask.

    Sunday was his blessing and I was intrigued with his full name- Tiger Isaac M____. I decided that he could go by his first name, his middle name or his initials and still be fine. And just as a side note that I found interesting, his initials spell his fathers first name.

  8. Are they really into golf maybe? :-)

  9. I didn't actually work with L-a. Elise's mom did. I have run into some odd names in preschool and kindergarten though. Like Katyrra (pronounced Ka-tee-ra), Harli, Belin and Tenley (though I kind of really like that name and she was my favorite preschooler last year!)

  10. Being named Daline sucked all through school. It didn't help any that my older brothers name was Dalen.
    When I had kids I gave them 3 names crazy yes but they can choose their favorite to be called by.

  11. Nope, Sandra. You're off the hook!

    I'm thinking this may be the year of the animal names. A friend just named her first boy after an animal, as well.

  12. Daline, your girls all have normal names. Unusual names, yes, especially Dayana. But she gets a pass since Chris got that pronunciation on the mish. :-) And they're pretty names too!

  13. It's not just the uncommon (or attempting to be uncommon) names ... it's the lack of logic when picking names that sometimes baffles me ...

    I was at work, and met a pair of kids, brother and sister, probably about 3 or 4 (I would've put mom in her late 20s or very early 30s), and the kids were named Ross and Monica. Gee, I wonder what Mom's favorite TV show is?

    Or what about a family that has 3 little girls? Reagan, Kennedy, and Madison. If they had a boy, would they have named him Jefferson?

    I've also met a family that had a Teagan (pronounced "Tee-gan"), Reagan (pronounced "Ree-gan") and Keegyn ("Kee-gan")