Under 30

I can't complain but sometimes I still do

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Give me your stupid baby names

For this week's Under 30, I am pondering a TomKat/Suri-related column about stupid baby names. Regular people are just as bad at naming their kids as famous people. We make fun of celebrities for naming their kids Apple and Moon Unit, but then we turnaround and name our kids Brittany, Dylan and Skylar.

It's hard, I know, because there really are only 10 good names out there. I'm talking about classics like John, Robert, Charles, etc. The thing about a name like John is that it sounds both presidential and rockerish (especially when you make it Johnny). Brittany, however, is a name for a hairdresser or a Gap store employee. The options, obviously, aren't the same.

Any names you guys hate? I think a first name with a "Y" in it almost always sucks. If the "Y" is in the first syllable, there's no question. (I'll grant an exception for Ryan.) An R in conjunction with a Y also all-but guarantees suckiness. (Harry, Larry, Gary, Mary, etc.)

What do you guys think?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Parents making up their own names is also just as stupid. A chick I knew couldn't decide between Hayley or Nevaeh (which she liked because it was "heaven" spelled backwards) Do not pass go, do not collect $200, go directly to the trailer court.

Also, just as trashy as making up your kids name is giving them an "original" name spelling AKA misspelling. (I had one client named tracy spelled Trayc)

3:07 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

My name isn't cool enough to rip on other names.

3:08 PM  
Anonymous K said...

I knew a couple who named their son Jackson, which isn't that bad. The father's name is Jack and the mother's name is Allison - so they combined to get Jackson.

It's made up(ish), but not bad.

I also heard of "Joey" for a girl being spelled "Joie." Excuse me, what? Help a kid out, man. It's got to learn to spell one day.

3:15 PM  
Anonymous cheddar said...

My niece's middle name is Nevaeh. Of course, her first name is Ajahnae.

I understand the desire to steer away from the Johns, Matts and Steves. People want some more "flava."

However, and I love my niece dearly, Ajahnae has entirely too much "flava."

3:51 PM  
Blogger mark said...

i have no problem with people giving their children names. otherwise we'd have to memorize their SSN or something else... like we'd have to call them big forhead or runs in forestview court.

i like the name Suri. I don't get why people think it's outrageous. Is it a geographical/diversity thing?

3:59 PM  
Blogger Steve Hyden said...

Personally, I think Skylar or Brittany is much dumber than Suri. But Suri isn't a good name for a rich white baby. I mean, I really like the name Dikembe Mutumbo, but it probably wouldn't work for my kid should I ever have one, you know?

4:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i never really liked the name steven.

4:15 PM  
Blogger klhp said...

Although it's not a name I would choose, I think Suri is an ok name. it's unusual but not crazy.

There have been names that have been ruined for me because of kids I work with. Brittany, Cody, Lamontiae (a boy, I'm not kidding), Armani (again, no kidding). But there are names that I love because of the kids: Jake, Emily, Jay, even Ida.

I tend to love classic names: Jack, Sam (for a boy), Lily, William (and call him Will), Clare/Claire, Kate (not Katie). I guess I've always been a traditionalist.

There is no excuse for naming your kid Apple. Even if your excuse is that an apple is fresh and clean like a newborn baby. (Whatever, Gwyn.)

4:52 PM  
Anonymous Pollup J. Van Winkle said...

My wife said no to DuWayne. I thought the capital W offered some class.

Kirk and Cameron as a first and middle name were also knocked out of the race.

Another name she wouldn't consider: Ice-T. If it was a girl, I wanted Propecia.

Personally, I too hate misspelled names like Aimee. It's not unique. It's just dumb.

I am curious as to how names disappeared with generations. The last time someone was named Gary was 1972. I dare anyone to find a toddler alive today named Ira, Delores, Mabel or Erma.

5:13 PM  
Blogger klhp said...

I know a Delores! She's three.

Poor girl...

6:29 PM  
Anonymous Gavin Cognito said...

Does the name fit the person? If yes, fine. If no, balderdash.

Names like "Savannah" or "Dakota" or trying to bring back "Noah" and "Moses" (which remind me of old men with beards, not babies) might not be my cup of tea... but if it fits, heck.

I hate "Madison" more than any other girl's name. I think Chlamydia is a far prettier name.

But what do I know? I don't even use my real name.

6:54 PM  
Anonymous Joe said...

I (reluctantly) watched some shitty Food Network reality show the other night where contestants compete to win a Food Network cooking show. For the last episode, the winner brought out his kids and introduced them: Hunter and Rider! Isn't that a form of child abuse?

It seems like a current trend for dullard parents is naming their precious ones after surnames. I had co-workers with kids named Carver and Giles. They should have been arrested.

You should interview a Kindergarten teacher, Steve. I bet they'd have insight to kid name trends.

7:01 PM  
Anonymous kbl said...

Gosh, Steve, have I told you how charming I think you are lately? Because I just don't think I say it enough. I'll also be sure to convey your compliments to my mother.

You should read Freakonomics which, in addition to being fascinating on a general level, has a chapter dedicated to the relationship between ridiculous names and socioeconomic status.

Someone already noted Dakota--number one or two on my list. Also Dustin (or Dusty, or any permutation thereof), Tiffany, objects-as-names (Candy, Krystal/Crystal/Khrystal--these also follow the first syllable "y" rule), and, because I will hate my 3rd grade enemy until the day I die, Naomi.

And how has nobody referenced Audio Science yet?

7:13 PM  
Blogger paul said...

I predict an appearance in "It's Your Call".

8:06 PM  
Anonymous Sharon said...

What about those old standbys of Socrates, Aristotle, and Homer? This weird name thing has been going on for a long time...did you forget about Moon Unit Zappa and her lovely brother Dweezil? I prefer Moses and Apple to those two famous choices.

8:30 PM  
Anonymous e4life said...

I was just laying out a page when I thought of one: Ariel. No naming your kids after fonts (even if the font is actually spelled "Arial").

Skye is pretty stupid, too.

8:50 PM  
Anonymous kbl said...

e4life--Clearly you were not an eleven-year-old girl when the world fell in love with Princess Ariel--The Little Mermaid. Because nothing says Klass like naming your kid after a Disney Princess. "Ariel is soooo the prettiest princess, and when I grow up I'm going to name my daughter after her!" Either that or people really like The Tempest.

9:22 PM  
Anonymous cheddar said...

Audio Science gets a pass because his mother is ridiculously hot. However, Jason Lee scarred his kid for life with Pilot Inspektor.

10:27 AM  
Blogger Thomas Roz said...

Hey, that comes from a Grandaddy song, so Jason Lee get no heat from me.

11:14 AM  
Blogger Thomas Roz said...

kbl ... how precious was the Freakonomics story about the mom who named her child Temptress because she used to watch the Cosby Show ... i almost dropped the book.

11:16 AM  
Blogger Jen said...

kbl, I'm sorry to hear about your 3rd grade enemy, but I like the name Naomi. I think it's old world without sounding old person-ish.

2:32 PM  
Anonymous Nick said...

I was watching the local morning show this morning and they had a fashion show for moms. One woman had her two kids - ages 2 and 3 -with her. Their names? Morgan and Taylor. These names already seem dated. They reak of early-2000s. In 80 years, these names will be the Gaylords and Mildreds of today. Also knew of someone who named their son, Arik (pronounced like Eric). Why not just spell it correctly then? For the rest of his life, people will be asking whether you say his name like "Arr-ick" or "Air-ick." On related note, have you ever heard someone mispronounce their own name. The one that really gets me is comedian/actor D.L. Hughley. He actually pronounces his last name with an audible "g," like "Hyoog-lee." Sorry, D.L., didn't anyone tell you that the "g" is silent?

3:36 PM  
Blogger mark said...

i like gaylord. thanks for the idea.

6:17 PM  
Anonymous bizzle said...

steve hyden, you've finally gone too far. my daughters name (evelyn, in case you've forgotten) totally has a 'Y" in it. so suck a nut.
a certain someone that i know wants to name his child ebeneezer, which i think is about the WORST idea i've ever heard, but he's cute so i'll forgive him,
my friend mike wants to name his baby (when and if he has one ) Tiberius Ceaser Sirola, which is about the GREATEST thing i have ever heard.
i, too, tend to aim for the classics when thinking of baby names... any of that new age bullshit really pisses me off... daisy rainbow cloud or whatever is taking it a little too far... but what do i know? i named my kid something with a "Y" in it....

4:20 PM  
Anonymous bizzle said...

oh, and as a side not, i was almost named moonunit due to my fathers over zealous devotion to frank zappa. luckily my mother just said no to drugs during delivery and i ended up rebecca... you've gotta remind me to thank my mother for that one real soon.

4:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i forgot an 'e' . . . ooops

4:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Has DL ever explained why he or his family pronounces the "g" in Hughley? Or is he/they that clueless. It's not like it sounds cool or anything...it makes him look stupid. I met an Yvette who introduced herself pronouncing the Y as in Why-vette.


7:59 PM  

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