The Snowflake Menace
Like our President, we’re all about finding common ground with our enemies. And we think we can now agree that the decline in our nation’s values began in 1965.
That’s the year “Kimberly” entered the top five names for baby girls. The downward spiral of Decorator Names had begun.
Consider the popular names leading up to that annus horribilis. Lisa. Mary. Susan. Karen. Linda. Plain names. Utilitarian names. Democratic names that underscore how we’re all created equal.
But with Kimberly, America entered the era of Barbie dolls. Heather first shows up in 1974, Ashley nine years later. Brittany — Brittany! — begins terrorizing the innocents in 1989, and throughout the Nineties everyone’s rushing to out-snowflake their neighbors. (Samantha is a witch or a slut, not a little girl.)
The trend is less pronounced among boys, but once Jason breaks the ice in 1973, we’re suffering Joshuas, Tylers, Jacobs and Ethans in the years ahead — names that cry out for targeting during dodgeball.
The kids will survive, as they always do. But they’d have a better start in life if their parents would stop handing them trophies for being born.
Top 5 Names Over the Last 100 Years [Social Security]
Cody, Kyle, Todd, Seth, Montana, Tripp, Tagg. Why not just name the kid “Take my Lunch Money”.
And the worst? Fucking Lisa Bonet: Nakoa-Wolf Manakauapo Namakaeha Momoa.
One of the many many reasons I shouldn’t have kids: I’d probably trot out some horrible “ethnic” name like Siobhan or Eoin.
Wasn’t this around when the “ME” portion of the Baby Boomer Generation took full force? It begins with good intentions and then ends with celebutards naming their kids after fruit or where they are conceived (Why no kids named “Backseat”?)
Of course, we Asians take a dimmer view of snowflakes.
“A nail that stands out is the first to be hammered down.”
@ManchuCandidate: Future Failures of America, Celebutard Edition:
Hopper Jack: Sean Penn’s son
Pirate: Jonathan Davis, lead singer of Korn’s son
Apple: Gwyneth Paltrow’s daughter
Coco: Courtney Cox’s daughter
Tu Morrow: Rob Morrow’s daughter
Denim & Diesel: Toni Braxton’s sons
Reign Beau: Ving Rhames’s daughter
Puma: Erykah Badu’s daughter
Cash: Slash, lead guitarist of Guns & Roses, son
Story and Dream: Ginuwine, r&b artist, daughters
Pilot Inspektor: actor Jason Lee’s son
Moxie CrimeFighter: Penn of Penn & Teller’s daughter
True Isabella Summer: Forest Whitaker’s daughter
Audio Science: actress Shannon Sossamon’s son
Phinnaeus & Hazel: Julia Robert’s twin daughter and son
Fifi Trixibelle: Bob Geldoff’s daughter
Peaches Honeyblossom: Bob Geldoff’s daughter
Pixie: Bob Geldoff’s daughter
Poppy Honey: chef Jamie Oliver’s daughter
Dixie Boo:chef Jamie Oliver’s daughter
Dixie Dot: chef Jamie Oliver’s daughter
Bebe Bell: Anna Richardson’s daughter
Seven: Erykah Badu’s son
Brooklyn: David Beckham’s son
Romeo: David Beckham’s son
Cruz: David Beckham’s son
Banjo: actress Rachel Griffith’s son
Rebel: Sin City director Robert Rodriguez’s
Rocket: Sin City director Robert Rodriguez’s
Racer: Sin City director Robert Rodriguez’s
Rogue: Sin City director Robert Rodriguez’s
Jermajesty: Jermaine Jackson’s son
Saffron Sahara: Simon LeBon of Duran Duran’s daughter
Talua Pine: Simon LeBon’s daughter
Kyd Miller: David Duchovny’s son
Sonnet: Forest Whitaker’s daughter
Ocean: Forest Whitaker’s son
Magnus: Will Ferrell’s son
God’iss Love Stone: Lil’ Moe, r&b artist, daughter
Heaven: Lil’ Moe’s daughter
Rumer: Demi Moore’s daughter
Scout: Demi Moore’s daughter
Tallulah Belle: Demi Moore’s daughter
Freedom: Ving Rhames’s son
London: Slash’s son
Dweezil: Frank Zappa’s son
Moon Unit: Frank Zappa’s daughter
Eja: Shania Twain’s son
Satchel: Woody Allen & Mia Farrow’s son
Nell Marmalade: Helen Baxendale & David Eliot’s daughter
Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily: the late Michael Hutchence’s daughter
Pheonix Chi: Melanie C of the Spice Girls’s daughter
Mingus Lucien: Helena Bonham Carter’s son
Where did you get that list?
That is a long line of kids who would have been pummeled if they went to public schools.
@blogenfreude: Just a few minutes of spare time this am, big guy?
K. As one who is blessed with three Christian names, only one of which will I use, let me gloss some of bloggie’s names.
First: almost any name sounds ridiculous when used as part of a pair: eg. Jimmy Bob.
Second: nothing here beats Newt, Mitt, or Rush.
Third: rock stars are morans: it goes with the territory. Why be surprised by what they call their contraceptive failures? This also applies to movie stars.
Fourth: there are some old and/or novelty names included that I would except, eg;
Coco: worked for Chanel and any number of Franch
Phinnaeus: I could totaly be called Phinneus. Esp if I had a twin named Linnaeus.
Saffron: actressy but not appalling if one writes cook books. Or should that be ‘authors’?
Magnus: dynamite name. Helps to be Icelandic but still. I could see myself being called that. Friends would call me Big. Magnus Magnussen: Brit TV personality (Yes they have them. Who knew?)
Mingus: Ditto Magnus. I’m giving the benefit of the doubt that HBC, being of the High-Limey persuasion, is using the traditional Scots name Menzies and spelling it as it would be pronounced in Skye: Ming-us, with a soft g. Of course, if it’s after the jaz-person all bets are off.
The single most ridiculous name I know is Beowulf Borritt. That is real. I worked with him. And wanted to punch him in the face long before I met him merely from hearing the name.
Oh. And I have a cousin named Dorcus.
@ManchuCandidate: Forgot the google search – can’t find it again – sorry.
@blogenfreude: Why do these people want their daughters to be strippers?
I’m pretty sure I’ve shared my favorite website on this topic with all of you.
The sections on the faux-Native American and faux-Celtic names are quite funny.
I’m strangely ambivalent towards Madison as a baby name. I mean, I’m impressed by the founding father / Wisconsin connection. And “Maddie” does evoke some sort of spunky 1920s go-getter.
Yet: the name certainly is in the range of obnoxiousness.
I need a ruling. Hip or dip?
@chicago bureau: Madison sounds like a porn star or a tour guide. FAIL.
@chicago bureau: two-scoop dip from where I sit. More or less inexcusable.
There is a pro baseball player named Coco Crisp. Also one named Marquise Grissom — his dad was working on the Mercury assembly line when the lad was born.
@blogenfreude: Also for your delectation or derision:
Hud: son of Hoosier r0cker John Mellencamp
Speck: son of John Mellencamp. Does the name “Cougar” jog your memory?
Hands off lunch money for Hud. He is a district Golden Gloves champ!
@EffeteHipster: Why not Carport? Why not Pizza? Why not Banana? “This is my daughter, Visine.” Geeze these people annoy me.
@chicago bureau: It only became popular after the movie “Splash” in which the mermaid played by Darryl Hannah chose that name from the NYC street sign. Most people who name their kid that have no idea who James Madison was, although they do enjoy his wife’s snack cakes.
Viagra or Cialis would work.
@chicago bureau: Madison is Klassi with a K and a big heart over the i.
I do like the nickname Maddy, but prefer it as a diminutive of the name Madeleine.
Levitra’s kind of pretty, too, no?
@lynnlightfoot: NO. But better than, say, Mildred, which is the most miserable name for a female ever devised.
@lynnlightfoot: I thought that was Blanche.
@lynnlightfoot: I vote for Shirley or Priscilla as most unfortunate/miserable names for a female. Something about the sound of them is fingernail-to-chalkboard for me.
Gertrude or Gladys. Floyd for a dude.
Up and coming names from one who sees daily the beneficiaries of parental cleverness
Latham (Laith) , Sawyer (nickname Saw? Yer?)
Alexis ( or ALexus)
I always wanted to name a son Penis (Peen)
“no doubt parents in the projects need help. you know what they need the most help with?
NAMING THEIR CHILDREN. shanikwa, latoya, deshantay, WTF!!?”
As I’ve mentioned before, I do some volunteer work with the Girl Scouts. We get the same girls month after month in our program so I’ve gotten used to pronouncing some of the more ahem “creative” names for the girls.
But last Saturday, I was helping out at the day camp and I had a couple of program aides (13-14 yo girls) do roll call. I thought they would like do it because its an easy task and helps establish their authority as a leader over the younger girls. They were not thrilled because they struggled with virtually every name that was not Ashley or Veronica. We’re going to have a lot of really fucked up people because they’ve grown up having to constantly tell people how to pronounce their names; even their peers dread it.
@baked: God, he’s brilliant. Stunning talent.
Worst for woman? Beryl. Gladys. Doreen.
Worst for man? Marvin. Binkie. Bunny
@Benedick: First: almost any name sounds ridiculous when used as part of a pair: eg. Jimmy Bob.
Mothers everywhere know how to deploy two names to your lasting shame.
@chicago bureau: I won’t rule on “Madison”, but that reminds me of a more subtle observation: Kimberly also marks the beginning of modern three-syllable names, which grate on the American ear. They violate our proud tradition of grinding language to a pulp, which arose at the same time as the efficiency movement.
I had a neighbor who had kids named Crystal and Blake.
My grandmother’s name was Bridget, and I only learned this 2 months ago when I was trying to research my family history and found the obituary notice for her parents, which mentioned her name. She died in 1924, when my dad was 5, and he never once mentioned her name that I know of.
@Promnight: All of my kids’ friends are some variation on Madison, Ashley, Cole, Draper and Vishnu. We’re thankful for the foreign medical community…
IMHO, right up there with Mildred (and yes, I agree about the awfulness of Beryl, Gladys, and Doreen, and I’m glad not to have been named Blanche, Esther, Shirley, or Priscilla) are Beulah and Bertha. As possibly the oldest or next to oldest Stinquer, and one of the few Midwesterners here, I have in my lifetime been exposed to frightful names visited on the women of my grandmothers’ and great-grandmothers’ generations. My stepfather had aunts named Guernsey and Daisy, poor dears. Somebody else I’m related to had aunts named America and Caledonia. Mr. Lightfoot’s maternal grandmother’s first name was Clyde, and she was married to Elbert, who decided to go by his middle name, Munsey. But those two were from North Carolina and Tennessee, where people rise to dizzying heights of something or other in outlandish naming.
One of my sometime hobbies is mining the obits in the local newspaper for splendid names. Some of my all-time favorites: Lordmeister Powers, Merlin Gene Root, Lambert Gasaway, Noble Swango. Phonebooks are lots of fun, too. We have local families named Turnipseed and Muckenfuss. My, how I do run on. I’ll stop now.
@baked: Was is Chris who dubbed those “Watts, Africa” names?
@Benedick: Although I have a ridiculous first name (as those of you on FB know), I was at least spared the double-barreled moniker of my mother and grandmother. I do have a cousin named Jeb Stuart [lastname] (great-great-grandfather served in his cavalry in the War of Northern Aggression).
It’s the names pulled out of nowhere that mystify me–where I grew up, you were named for the relative likely to leave you the most money. I have two cousins named Blanche and Ruba, poor things, but they did inherit lovely silver and jewelry from the great-aunts so-named.
From Car Talk ’05 – most popular automotive baby names:
1 Lincoln/ Mercedes
2 Royce/ Lexus
3 Ford /Lotus
4 Bentley/ Chevy
5 Chevy/ Kia
6 Kia/ Royce
7 Benz /Porsche
8 Scion/ Infiniti
9 Beemer/ Chrysla
10 Chrysler/ [only 9 girl names]
@blogenfreude: “When I told him your daughter’s name was Portia, he asked why you would name her after a car.”
@Mistress Cynica: Portia Carrera isn’t too bad.
@blogenfreude: Chevy? Beemer? Chrysla? WTF?
@Mistress Cynica: Beat me to it. God, how I love that movie.
SZB Update – I finished Lamentations. Let the proofreading/tomato-throwing commence.
This is the best post+comments ever. Seriously.
I loved deal old Aunt Mildred before she passed on, but I just can’t see that name ever coming back. Millie? Come on.
@RZ: I’m related to one in a long line of Mildreds, and she’s always detested the name. On the other hand, I was deeply attracted to a dark haired beauty (think the character who plays a nurse in Amy Poehler’s new “Parks and Recreation”) in high school who shorted “Millicent” to “Millie”.
@Nabisco: Attractions like that keep the flame alive, whatever that flame may be.
I was too distant from my (great) aunt to know her own preference. But I see Millicent as distinctly less horrible than Mildred. Think of the second [or third] syllable, will you.
But she was an amazing lady, full of life and love. Plus I trust she loved rhododendrons, because this love was handed down to my Mother.
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