The Baby Name Game
By Pay Chen
Are you one of those expectant parents who doesn’t like to share your short list of baby names? If so, I love you. I know some people get bent out of shape when they’re told, “Yes, we have some names picked out but we’re not telling anyone.” Good. DON’T tell anyone — because people who do tell their friends what their favourite names are, inevitably ask for their opinions. Do you think Gwyneth Paltrow told her besties that Apple was at the top of her list? I doubt it. Because her friends would likely not have said, “yes! That is most favourite name for a child AND a pre-workout snack…like, ever!”
There have been a few times when a friend has asked for my opinion. I hate these moments. One was the distinctive name of a reality show “celebrity” who was famous for nothing. I said everyone would associate their daughter with this non-celeb because she was at the height of her popularity at the time. It would be the current equivalent of naming your newborn child, Kardashian. Well, she stuck with that name and I was definitely not asked to be her Godmother.
I’ve never said I hated a name (I am only slightly brighter than that), but just as I will tell a friend that the shirt she is thinking of buying is not the most flattering, I am doing what I think friends do — being honest (while sometimes lying just a smidge because I might think the name is awful but will only just say “it’s not my favourite”).
Hey, I know that I am in no position to mock someone’s name (you read the byline, right?) and I am all for unique and memorable names. I think Vivian Lake is a beautiful name (the spawn of perfect couple Gisele Bundchen and Tom Brady). Same with Drew Barrymore’s choice of, Olive. And we’ve all heard of the unconventional names celebrities have bestowed upon their offspring. Chef Jamie Oliver has a daughter named Daisy Boo and another named Poppy Honey. Combined, they pretty much equal Honey Boo Boo.
Possibly my favourite — even among Moxie Crimefighter (Penn Jillette), Pilot Inspektor (Jason Lee) and Fifi Trixibelle (Bob Geldof) — is Jermaine Jackson naming his son Jermajesty.
Need more inspiration for baby names? Look no further than social media. Let’s not forget the American couple that named their daughter Hashtag based on the Twitter symbol to track trending topics. There is in fact, an Egyptian child by the name of, Facebook. And in 2011, an Israeli couple named their daughter ‘Like’ after the popular Facebook button. At last check, names such as: Tweet, YouTube, Viral, Trending, @ (hey, Prince became a symbol, your child can too), and Gangnam Style, have yet to make waves.
Thank me later.