What’s in a Name?

how-to-care-for-roses-11What’s in a name? that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet;

Nice sentiment Mr. Shakespeare but is it true? Does a name really matter?

So..does your name affect your future? Do people really care if their child is going to be bullied in the playground or possibly have to apply for a job in the future?

As I’m currently pregnant, I find myself with a daunting task ahead of me: namely… naming a child. It has to be one of the most difficult jobs of all time. I am responsible for their identity after all! So what’s my motivation here? Should I be thinking about giving my child the best possible start in life or should I  be thinking about: the place that he was conceived; my favourite cocktail or movie star?

Me: Mohito! Come on it’s time to go!

Husband: You too DeNiro! Your Spag Bol is ready!

Hmmmm! Obviously if I was a celebrity or Rock star I would be expected to come up with a ridiculous name for my child. It is quite simply a prerequisite to label your newborn with a wholly outrageous moniker. Think about that crazy world of celebrity, where it seems ok to dish out names such as: Zowie Bowie; Pilot Inspektor Lee; Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily; Moonunit Zappa; Apple Martin; Jermagesty Jackson and Prince Michael II,or Blanket as he is more fondly known!

Surely however, ‘normal’ people don’t do this sort of thing? Surely the general public has more of a grip on reality and understands the singular embarrassment that could come from having a name, that when read out in assembly, causes your peers to openly guffaw, whilst your teachers titter behind their hands?

Well the answer to this is a resounding NO THEY WOULDN’T!!!

In the quest for ‘uniqueness’ it seems that the modern parent is quite prepared to make a laughing stock of their child. How do I know? Well, coming from a teaching background I have been privy to a number of particularly cringe-worthy names over the years. Some of them, quite frankly have been bordering on: insane; cruel or tantamount to child abuse as far as I’m concerned! Let me bamboozle you with one in particular that I can’t seem to forget..with a surname of Mortis, what would be your first thought on a forename for your beloved? Well, these parents decided to call their child: Rigor Scooby-Doo Mortis. And the sad thing is that I’m not even joking!

Then there’s the new-fangled craze of sticking a letter and an apostrophe in front of an everyday name to jazz it up a bit! There’s nothing like a: D’Shawn or a D’Paul or indeed a L’Rachel to get you pondering over the intellect of some people!

Then what about the wonder of naming your baby after the place he/ she was conceived?? Oh deary me!! Really? As well as Brooklyn, Denver, Colorado and Montana are we going to meet up with some Huddersfields, Blackpools and Glasgows over the  next few years? Why don’t we go the whole hog and narrow it even further to Park or Pub or even Toilet? I’m sure if we did that, then the name Bed would become increasingly common and boring wouldn’t it?

Of course not everyone is going to like the name you choose to give your child and..of course, personal preference is your prerogative. Just give a little thought to your child in the playground and whether you want them to have any friends after all! Just remember that they will grow up and have to meet prospective in-laws and employers!

So…will I be naming my child in a weird and wacky way? No siree…although being a Christmas baby I was toying with the idea of Santa….or Elf?? What do you think?