Whaat’s In A Naame?

So… I’ve received some kind backlash from this post and before you read this it please understand I’m not bashing what anyone has named their kids.  All the writing before the big finish is simply to illustrate all the little nuances that people put in their kids names that, through time and from people respelling it a different way, eventually results in a name that’s is completely misspelled.  So… if you’ve spelled your kids name “Lyndsi” instead of “Lindsay” or “Randi” instead of “Randy” it totally doesn’t annoy me to the point wanting to pitch myself off a cliff… I may misspell it though.  So, I’m sorry if I may offend you a little but all it is is my opinion.  Let me know what you think… a little debate is always good on these things…

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.  Bunny 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 annoying that it makes me want to rip the buttocks from my hindquarters and wear them as earmuffs.  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 “Kourtney”.  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 start wishing I had my two, fine, fleshy posterior pieces over my ears.

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

What will Apple’s kid brothers name be?  Banana?  Kiwi?  Pomegranate?

Gwyneth Paltrow most recently named her kid “Apple”.  I’ve heard of other names like “Cloud”, “Rainbow”, “Fruitstand”, “Bird”, “Moon”, “Camera” and “Dweezil”.  What the F?  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 (if you don’t know… that was a pot reference).

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

Awwww… what a cute little Adolf Hilter…

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.  Totally F-ing 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 Billy Badass 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”, “Fhf5orrtejj” instead of “Eddie” or “Wolfman” instead of “Bill”… please don’t.  Please don’t because the only person that thinks it’s cool is you.


7 responses to “Whaat’s In A Naame?

  1. dude.mandal… my parents just randomly found a name in a baby name book and picked it.(means almond in germany, we’re scottish!) and pronounced like comedian howie mandel. so being pronounced wrong and spelled horribly wrong constantly for 30 years of my life.. it goes from mandel, mandall, mandella, or people even mistake it thinking it short for amanda! serious its been a curse. but yet im glad it has some orginality. so in deed whaat’s in a naame? ahha

  2. The purposeful mangling of spellings is pretty much my biggest pet peeve with baby names these days. If it’s going to be pronounced the same, why not just stick with the tried and true spelling that has gotten people by for hundreds of years, people?

    I honestly think the more creative names are usually cute, though. Even in the case of Apple. As in “she’s the Apple of my eye”…it’s sweet. And yeah, a little Hippie or Native american, but I like that too.

    By the way, Apple already has a little brother. His name is Moses.

    Creativity in names is great, until people take it to Adolf Hitler lengths, that is. In that case, I think even something like “Cicada Exuvium” would be an improvement.

    Actually, that has a nice ring to it…


  3. Mollien (Mom) Koenig

    Totally agree. Like I said, my favorite place for names is the WalMart check-out. The name tags are, in many cases, walking signboards for parental idiocy.

    That said, you have to be careful which names you pick on, such as the Kaarin one. I’m not sure, but that could be a European spelling of Karen…in fact, I think it’s Scandinavian. So..she could have easily been, say, a Norwegian who married an American, or her parents were of Scandinavian descent.

  4. I have spent my whole life spelling my name for everyone because my mom put an extra i in it (I think she was still on meds at the time she named me)but nevertheless I think it is unique and not many people have the same spelling. It annoys me most of the time though and I didn’t want to do that to Kortney but in her short life I have had to spell her name numerous times and it looks like I have given her a life of spelling her name for everyone. She’ll just grow up to gripe at me for doing it just like I do at my mom. So I guess the reason for spelling her name weird was so that she could be unique and it’s really not that much different. I just wanted to give an opinion on the other side.
    PS I really enjoy reading your blogs!! Keep up the good work!!!

    • Thanks for being a good sport Tiff. I guess it would have helped if I had even spelled Kortneys name right in my post!! I hope you know that I’m not making fun of the name you’ve given Kortney… I mean, we named our daughter an uncommon name and didn’t even have to spell it different! I know you and Slash are awesome parents and I’m sure Kortney will grow to love her name as Daddy’s Little Girl will too. I hope me using Kortney as an example in my post didn’t offend you or Slash in any way… because that was the furthest thing from what I was trying to do.

  5. Whaat’s In A Naame? Who Is Papa K? is an interesting name for a blog, keep up the good work, thanks, from Aileen Charles

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