Saturday, June 10, 2006

What's in a name?

I love names, I really love thinking up baby names, baby or no. Sometimes I think it's easier to choose a name if you've narrowed the field. This is a bad idea for me, as the last time I compiled a list like this(my list of states I won't live in) I really had to eat my words. I'm living in one of those states right now.
Be that as it may, I still have a list of names I won't call my child. Let's start with the bad Biblical names. Cain, Delilah, Jezebel, Goliath, Zerubabbel, Judas, and Dorcas. I really think I don't have to explain any of those. I don't have anything against Dorcas, personally, but I'd prefer the other version of her name, Tabitha. Then there are the bad literary names. This list would be REALLY long, as there are many, many bad literary characters that one could name their children after. Let's just choose one that someone I knew used. Guinevere. It's a beautiful name, but the character was positively faithless.
And I won't be inventing any names of my own, nor using strange spellings of names already in use. And, for some reason, I just can't name any of my kids after cities in Texas(that knocks out Lubbock, Marshall, and Paris) or American mountain ranges(sorry little Pocono and Rocky). I'll try to avoid last names as first names, but since we have a last name that's almost a first name, I make no promises.
I won't do virtues as first names, too much pressure. Besides, if you're an impatient Patience, how can you feel like the name is really yours? My name wasn't so bad until I found out it means "graceful lily." Stop laughing, it's not THAT funny. Virtues and positive attributes make nice middle names, something to which one can aspire.
Oh, I forgot the most important rule of all: absolutely no names that were used for family pets going back a minimum of three generations. Otherwise, arguments between your kids will sound like this: "Yeah? Well YOU were named after Grandma's DOG!" Nice picture. Don't think it can't happen to you, even good kids come up with stuff like this when they get too old for babysitters and they're caught up with their homework. We had a field day with the copy of my sister's birth certificate that had the Male box checked accidentally. I think we had her believing she really might be a boy until Mom & Dad got home.
And while it may simplify things, I don't think naming your child with your last name as their first name is very nice, either. My uncle, Emery Emery(I am NOT making this up) would attest to that.