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Thursday, January 7, 2010

Random Thoughts On Names


I was thinking about names today. You know, why parents choose to name their kids what they name them. There is a whole chapter on this in Freekanomics, a book I highly recommend. It talks about the names used by different social classes and races of people ,and it's a little harsh at times, but sadly, true. This book also addresses abortion and it's effect on the crime rate in this country. I didn't like what the author was saying, seeing as how I am pro life, but it did make me think.

Anyway back to names. There are a lot of made up names these days. I think these names are possibly created over a game of Scrabble and a bottle of Tequila, but they seem to be the trend. I feel sorry for the kindergarten teachers trying to teach little ones how to spell their names and learn phonics at the same time. But what do I know, phonics may be old school by now.

Another trend is the use of old names from the Bible and history books. I can't tell you how many Hannahs I know under the age of six.

I like the name Mary Celeste.I heard a story about a ship named the Mary Celeste. It's entire crew disappeared in 1872 and was never seen or heard from again. The ship didn't appear to have been damaged in any way. Maybe everyone knows this story, but I only heard it recently. I thought If I were to name a little girl today I would name her Mary Celeste.

Some of the old names I just can't imagine using. How do you look at a beautiful baby boy and say I'll call him Orville, or Wilbur? And what about Claude? That's a rock made from dried mud that you throw at someone in a clod fight. Clod fights are very dangerous, by the way. Just ask my brother Doyce. He was hit in the eye with a clod and had to wear a patch over his eye and Mother put drops in it every day. I was very young when this happened and the impact was great. A few years later he had me convinced he had a glass eye. I was looking at his eyes and saying "yeah I can see the difference".

A person or situation can make you feel differently about a name, as in the name Florence. Florence is a city in Italy. Florence Henderson was Carol Brady on the Brady Bunch. But to me Florence will always be a crazy old lady who laughed like a witch and carried a water pail around the neighborhood I grew up in.

I know a very young lady who's father named her Lucille after Lucille Ball. I suggested she tell people she was named after BB King's guitar and now suddenly the name Lucille seems cool. I don't know, I'm just sayin'....

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A wife, mother, and spoiler of small dogs, I grew up in a small West Texas town, with my eyes full of sand, and my heart full of joy.


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