Saturday, October 29, 2011

Short Haitus

I am terribly sorry for the lack of posting during the weekday. Due to a party I am having, well, today, I will be unable to post content into Monday since my schedule has to be shifted to accommodate the changes. As a peace offering, I give you something quite adorable to look at.




image source

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

My Heroes

Hero Names is a diverse subject. Everyone has a hero in various forms, be their hero a fictional character or a tangible person. What is a hero to one person could be the opposite to another. That is why it helps to pay homage to those that inspire you. It makes things much more personal. Once I am able to have a pet, for instance, I intend to pay homage to my heroes. One cat I had was named after Lina Inverse from my favorite anime series of the time.
Some hero names are too good to save for animals. Some names are just so personal and so beautiful that you might want to use it for your own children. Here are a few names I love because they relate to my personal heroes:

Isobel and Traceyanne: I do not care if Isobel sounds a lot like #1 Isabella. I do not care if others would think Traceyanne is a bit dated and made-up. Isobel Campbell and Traceyanne Campbell are my favorite modern female vocalists (Joni Mitchell has the all-time spot).Also, Isobel Cambell sings for Belle and Sebastain while Traceyanne sings for Camera Obscura, another band I love on equal footing. Both bands are often compared because they have a similar feeling, but like Isobel and Traceyanne, they are not actually related despite sounding like they are.Twins with these names would be a great homage to two fantastic vocalists.

Margaret: I meet my Aunt Margaret when I was a lot younger on a big trip around the West Coast. From that small amount of time I knew her, I still cannot forget how much of an awesome woman she was. I would love to use this name in the future.

Gilbert: I love Anne of Green Gables, and I of course love Gilbert Blythe. He has a real charm, even down to his name.I even love the nickname Gill. It has an old-timey sound that also has a wonderful tie in with the book series I love.

Al: My Uncle Al, short for Alphonse, was the closest thing I had to a living grandfather. I have fond and vivid memories of visiting him in Philladelphia. Since his passing, Thanksgiving has never been the same (He usually hosted it). I think that any name that can be shortened to Al (Alistair, Allen, Alice) can work as an homage to a great man.

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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Z Factor

Z is a special letter to me. As a child, Z was for two things: Zebra, Zoo, and Zipper. I liked both of those things since I loved animals as a child and could not muster anything other than neutrality over zippers. With a bigger vocabulary, I try and come up with words that start with Z off the top of your head, but it's only a few more than the two words I learned in Elementary School. Still, I am drawn to these few words that start with Z. I subconsciously see them as fairly special words...kind of like magic. I think this attraction to the letter Z works well with my affinity towards names. There are so many names I love that start with Z. I always find something special about all Z names, even the more popular ones, and I think it is because of that one letter. Here are a few names that have that Z sound I love:
Zora
Zisanda
Zinnia
Zola
Zeta
Zephyr
Zane
Xander (starts with an X, but is said like a Z)
Zachary
Zeke
Zen
Zed

Monday, October 24, 2011

On Bernadette: Why It Has The Best Sentiment For a Little Girl

The first Bernadette I heard of came to my attention while watching the tape of Into The Woods. Bernadette Peters: Broadway Darling, is pretty much the only real Bernadette in the public conscious.
That is a good thing.
From her strong voice to her long ,curly, hair, Miss Peters to me is a perfect Bernadette. The name translates to "brave as a bear", and is a female version of Bernard(which translates to the same thing). Bernadette is, thus, a very strong name. It's softened not by being the feminine form, but simply by it's namesake. Bears may be brave and ferocious when pushed, but left to their own devices they are gentle and shy.

Bernadette has the best sentiment for a young girl. So many names give blessings of beauty or of resembling some beautiful image. Bernadette wishes for bravery, but it seems that is not pretty enough for people.Tell a woman that she resembles a bear more than a deer and they will feel offended. I, however, would be flattered. Bears are strong mammals, and what's wrong with resembling something strong? Deers are lovely, but a deer loses when pitted against a bear.

To have a name that blesses a child with the bravery of a bear, whether they are brave or not, is a wonderful sentiment.There is so much out there that can harm a child that they need that kind of bravery. This is not just the bravery to go on adventures, but the bravery to just be. I would rather have a child who is brave enough to be happy with themselves than one who is particularly pretty or social.

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Friday, October 21, 2011

Belle and Sebastian

A band that I love is Belle and Sebastian. They are a Glasgow-based indie rock band. The lyrics, more sinister than the sweet melodies, are beautifully put together. One thing that I like to look out for while listening to some of my favorite Belle and Sebastian songs are the names that come up. A lot of songs from this group include narratives of boys and girls and their troubles and feelings.Here are a few songs that include names that have a lovely feeling when part of the song...as if they are characters in some novel. It makes names like Hilary and Judy and make them sound pretty smart.Here are a few names from songs I've heard (it's hard to find all of their songs, and I've yet to hear their new album Write About Love in full)

Judy( from Judy and The Dreams of Horses)
Judy wrote the saddest song
She showed it to a boy in school today
Judy, where did you go wrong?
You used to make me smile when I was down
Judy was a teenage rebel
She did it with a boy when she was young
She gave herself to books and learning
She gave herself to being number one

Anthony( From if You're Feeling Sinister)
Anthony walked to his death
Because he thought he'd never feel this way again
If he goes back to the house then things would go from bad to worse
What could he do?
He wants to remember things exactly as he left them on that funny day
And if there is something else beyond, he isn't scared because
It's bound to be less boring than today
It's bound to be less boring than tomorrow

Hilary( From if You're Feeling Sinister)
Hilary went to the Catholic Church
Because she wanted information
The vicar, or whatever, took her to one side and gave her confirmation
Saint Theresa's calling her, the church up on the hill is looking lovely
But it doesn't interest, the only things she wants to know is
How and why and when and where to go
How and why and when and where to follow
How and why and when and where to go
How and why and when and where to follow

Belle and Sebastian (Nice twin names, though fans of the french show might find it too obvious. Never mind the story in the song)
Everyone thought it was a shame
For Belle and the boy Sebastian
Belle was okay but, oh, Sebastian
Went too far again
Crashed his car in the rain

Tara and Sara (too matchy for twin names, but this part of the song I'm not Living in The Real World is too good to pass by)
Thinking about happiness
Thinking about Tara
Thinking about sorrow
Thinking about Sara
Sorrow and Sara are the very same word

Jane(from the song Lazy Line Painter Jane)
Lazy Jane, all the time
Painting lines
You are sleeping at bus stops
Wondering how you got your name
And what you're going to do about it

You will have a boy tonight

You will have a boy tonight
On the last bus out of town
On the last bus out of town
You will have a boy tonight
Maybe you will have a girl tonight
And you hope that she will see
And you hope that she will see 


I'd implore you to listen to many other songs from this wonderful band. While it might not inspire names all the time, and the songs are often sad, there is a subtle beauty about them. Some people like names like Lucy and Jude for their Beatles collection alone. I feel that way about this band: they can make me like a name.

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Names WIth a Joisey Accent

I was pretty much raised in New Jersey, moving there from New York at the age of two. It took me a long time to realize the inevitable: I have a Jersey Accent. It is not quite like a New York accent, though they are similar, but it's more like a deviation.The Jersey accent is a bit more slurred and not as guttural. I work in both New Jersey and New York, so I hear a lot of both. Thanks to watching British programming from a tender young age , my Jersey accent is not as thick as a true native, but it's still present.
This relates highly to names. What a name sounds like can affect how it's heard. For instance, no matter how lovely a French name looks, some of them are not as pretty with an English accent, and it's not guaranteed that everyone is as good as French pronunciation as you are.A Ciel will have their names pronounced like Seal a few times by telemarketers until they meet the one person who knows it's said See-el without correction.
On the subject of my own pronunciation woes: there are names I cannot use. No matter how lovely they look, it's a bit awkward to hear them with my accent. I find it important to find a name that doesn't sound bad when shouted. At some point you're going to yell out your precious child's name out loud for doing something, be it drawing on the wall or not coming when called. That right there is why sound is so important to names. Here are a list of names that are lovely, but not as lovely when my accent is involved. Of course, this is all personal preference, but doesn't my personal preference count?

Luella
Jolie
Julius
Carlotta
Bernard
Marie
Gizelle
Amandine

Now, while these are names that I can't use due to being from New Jersey, there are some things that give me the advantage. Hebrew names, for instance, are applicable for everyone, even the heavy ones. There is as big a Jewish community here than there is in New York, and often you know someone who is Jewish who lets you in on aspects of their culture (bat/bar mitzvahs, for example).Here are some names that are very Hebrew, but can still work in my hometown.
Adriel
Elisheva
Aleph
Rebecca(more common a name than Jennifer in my circle. I was surprised to find out it was a very "jewish" name)
Amari
Ari
Galila
I  love my hometown despite the misconceptions about it.New Jersey is a surprisingly beautiful and diverse part of the East Coast. Do not let the accent fool you.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Time On The Mind

My work schedule is in a transitory phase , and there is a chance that I might not be able to have something written for every day. Hopefully, on one of my few days off, I can get inspired and provide material for a long time. In case that doesn't happen, I suppose I'll have to be tardy. In repentance, I'll show a cute picture of something cute. What's more cute than a corgi puppy?






picture from cuteoverload.com

Team Retro

Now comes the final part of the Team Unique, Team Classic, and Team Retro triad. Today I will write about names under the category of Team Retro.
These names are sometimes confused with Team Classic, for they are both equally old names. However, Team Retro is a category of names a lot more modern, and at times considered a bit too freshly old for a revival. Classic is in The Victorian Era, but Retro is in The Roaring 20s and beyond.A lot of the time, these are names of people's grandmothers lovingly revived on the new generation. Sometimes, people just have that love for a musty old name that they'll parade it out without a care for the current fashion. Here are some names under the category of Team Retro:

Adeline
Grace
Felix
Martin
Zelda
Frederick
Oliver
Milly
Tilly
Eve
Agnes
Agatha
Edith
Milton
Penny
Ruby
Louise
Martha
Cal
Lou
Winnifred
Willamina

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Team Classic

I last talked about Team Unique as part of the Team Unique, Team Classic, and Team Retro triad. Today I am going to cover Team Classic, and indeed there is a lot to cover.
Team Classic uses the most usable names, but not in any way the most used names. There are many categories of names that fit under Team Classic because it is such a wide category. There are names of literary heroes, names of gods and goddesses,  Or just names that have an antique feel but haven't been used yet. Team classic, unlike team unique, is very concerned with the "Doctor" or "President" attached to the name, and want to choose a name that sticks out, but is a solid name. Names from Team Classic are often well-read or have an interest in history, so many names are used for their connection to a literary or historical hero. Here are names that fit under this category:

Arabella
Argos
Athena
Cedric
Christine
Clarice
Dorian
Diana
Douglas
Edward
Edmund
Eponine
Faustine
Frederick
Hermia
Nathaniel
Oscar
Priscilla
Penelope
Phillip

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Monday, October 17, 2011

Team Unique, Team Classic, and Team Retro

When it comes to choosing a special name, there are some styles I have noticed. Either someone wants truly unique name that pushes naming boundaries, a classic that is familiar yet unused, or a retro name that is just on the edge of being too old-fashioned.I call the three groups Team Unique (which is ironically an unoriginal label), Team Classic, and Team Retro.All three categories have names for different tastes. I thought I'd focus on the three categories of names in separate posts. Today, I will cover names under Team Unique.
Members of Team Unique are pretty cool people. They are not the type to worry whether a child's name will sound weird with "Dr" or "President" attached to it. The concern is mainly about the meaning. As long as the meaning is positive, then it's a possible name. .Some of the names from Team Unique are nouns in different languages, or they are nouns in plain English. Nonetheless, nouns are used a lot. In a way, it is the continuation of the old style of naming, but with fresh new languages instead of Latin or Greek. Here are a few names in the style of Team Unique.

Calypso
Skye
Kestrel
Thorn
Wolf
Zephyr
Fable (Chosen by Girl Gone Child for her first daughter)
Story
Azure
Clover
Epple
Amandine
Anzu

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Friday, October 14, 2011

Boy Names I Love

I do not write enough about boys names.
It makes me feel extremely guilty when I do all these posts about girls and give little thought to the names of boys. Boy names, while lacking nature names, are just as interesting. Here are a few boy's names that I like, and would even consider.
Miles: This is the name of the grandfather I've never meet, but my mom always talked about. The story is that he changed his name from Rufus to Miles. Indeed, I prefer Miles to Rufus. It's a cool, simple, and Jazzy name.

Peter: One of the best  show on Nickelodeon in my humble opinion is The Adventures of Pete and Pete. That series influences my taste in more than one way. It gave Pete, a natural nickname for Peter, a down-the-block homey sound. Peter, the formal version, has pretty positive images as well. Peter Pan, the perpetual boy, gives the name a literary whimsy.

Enzo: I like this name because it's part French and part sci-fi. Enzo is a popular name in France. The o-ending also gives it a very modern edge. It's one of the few modern/trendy names that I like.

Nathaniel: I used to like Edward, but then Twilight happened.  I would not consider or recommend Edward for the next thirty years. Hopefully, by then,  the series can fade into obscurity (where it belongs, but that's my own prejudices speaking).Until then, there is an equally good choice: Nathaniel. Nathaniel, like Edward, brings to mind dashing men in period garb roaming the English countryside broodingly.As I have a soft spot for romanticism in style alone, the literary connection to Nathaniel Hawthorne gains Nathaniel an advantage.

Alphonse: I've heard more than once that this name has been called "girly", but I find it charming. There is an Alphonse  on the anime series Fullmetal Alchemist series. Many young boys read this series, thus Alphonse already is becoming part of the norm. Alphonse Mucha brings in an artistic edge to the name. It helps that Mucha is my favorite artist, making me love this name more.





There are more where this came from, so I am far from opposed to thinking about boy names. I have as much love for them as for girl names, but I probably think more about the girls names more often.


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Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Cult of The Lillys

I like to say that I have an individualistic taste in name, that my tastes are not toward the name that everyone will have.
But then there is Lillian.
There are so many variations of names with a Lilly theme. There is Lilly,Lila, Lilliana, and my favorite, Lillian. I've more than once personally called these variation The Cult of The Lillys.
Lillian is a solid classic that sounds just as fresh today as it sounded the last time it was popular. Lilly is also a popular name, and is the natural nickname for Lillian and lots of variations of the two names. With the amount of variations of Lilly and Lillian , there are a lot of girls answering to Lilly. What is the appeal of this name?
I think, like Isabella, which is just as popular as Lilly, it might be the charm of the name. Isabella might be a variation of Elizabeth, but when is said, it sounds like Is A Bella. Bella, or Bel/belle, is often the route word for beautiful. That makes Isabella a literally beautiful name.Lilly brings to mind the flower, and the Lilly is ingrained in society as a symbol of beauty as much as the Rose.That makes Lilly, again, a literally Beautiful name.
There are also many literary characters with the name of Lilly. They are always righteous, and sometimes they have tragic circumstances. The recent Lilly to have the collective mind is Lilly Potter/Evens from the Harry Potter series. She is Harry's mother who gives Harry all that she can to protect him from his fate.This Lilly wears her name well, so there are no way people can see problems in using her as a namesake.
With all of this going for Lilly,many people from those with unique tastes to those with standard tastes can get behind the name. That is a lot of people, and many of these Lillys run risk of having a last initial tacked on for reference. That is the saving grace of Lillian. Lilly might be the natural nickname for Lillian, but it's fairly easy to say in full, and it has a second nickname option: Lil.
The only Lillian I know as Lil is the baby Lil from the TV show Rugrats. She , with her twin brother Phil (full name Phillip) follow the main character Tommy Pickles on adventures. The twin's main characteristic is their love for eating bugs. I like Lil as a character, for she is truly herself as the bug-eater she is. I would definitely use Lil as an alternate nickname for Lillian, but no choice of mine can stop a Lillian from becoming one with The Cult.

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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Names Before The Obsession

It is very interesting to think about how you see things before you get really interested in a single subject. For instance, I used to find serious reading tedious until I learned to decode the words and themes in a book. Now The Odyssey and it's ilk are more thrilling to read.

I used to look at names differently as well before I found the act of naming important. Recently, I watched the movie Meet Joe Black.The main female lead was named Susan, and my first reaction was " Susan? Really?". To my modern ear, Susan just seemed so dated that it was hard to imagine a leading lady, let alone a love interest for Brad Pitt's brilliant character, to have a name like that. If she had a more classic name,even dated classics like Christina or Jessica, I'd have little reaction.But Susan? I had to laugh when her name was mentioned.I never had that reaction before.
I've now come to think about named I actually liked before getting deeper into name nerdom. These are names that at the least got me to think "That's pretty" or "That's something I'd name my kid" when I didn't think much about them.I had these elaborate reasons for liking them, so I'll include that as well.

Lina: When I was young, my favorite anime series was called Slayers. It's still a classic in my eyes, but I have other favorites.  Lina , as in the hero of this series, was the first namesake I thought "I want to name my children after her". She is a powerful sorceress in the series and a hot-headed spitfire of a character.

Lisa: I thought that Lina was a bit out there for some reason, so I thought of using Lisa while changing it to Lina depending on if the child wanted to.

Celeste: I had a short-term tutor with the name Celeste, and to this day I remember her name. She spoke Russian and went to Princeton .I still love this name, but love other names just as much, and maybe more.

Abigail: I have no memories of who had this name, but I remember liking her name.It's amazing how certain things stick while all the other memories fade away. Abigail, now, is a nice way to honor a family member, but I don't love it.

Now that I've gotten more invested in names, I can see that my choices were a bit random, and do not express my values as much as the names I love more now. I've got more of a style now, and my reasons behind liking a name are more concrete than before. In ten or more years, perhaps my style will change from how it is now. It's going to be interesting to see where my fluctuating tastes lead me.

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Doll Names

Dolls are curious things. Their sole function is as a pretty object that inspires it's owner's imagination.I've been thinking about the names dolls are given, and how they are different from the names of real people.

Dolls have names that range from elaborate to cutesy. For example, Mimi may be a bit childish a name for a future adult, and Carlotta may be too much, but both names would work for a doll. Dolls, after all, are perpetually youthful, and they often are in dresses frillier than any name.

Doll names are antiques to match the period of dress the doll is in.Real people have antique names as well, but there is often a modern sentiment thrown in there somewhere.Dolls have more unique vintage names that I find very lovely.

These ideas of Doll Names, however, seems to be all in my imagination. It turns out that most of the dolls are given more current names despite the period of dress they wear. This is done so that little Madison can have a doll to match her name.While doing research for this post to see what dolls are really named, I stumbled upon a doll in a lovely floral dress and hairstyle in the Victorian style named Tyra. I suppose my idea of Doll Names is purely a concept.Still, I like the sentiment behind the style of names I consider Doll Names. Here are names that would suit a doll, and maybe even a person. Just as long as the two are not confused.

Antoinette
Bettina
Bebe
Carmina
Carlotta
Flora
Georgette
Hattie
Jessamine
Kiki
Lucy
Lulu
Mirabella
Mimi
Natalia
Tabitha
Tilly

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Monday, October 10, 2011

Isadora, I Adore Ya

I am in love with Isadora.

On many websites about names, Isadora is considered a rare alternative to #1 name Isabella. I agree that it has the same sound and technical features, but Isadora is very different in the way I like "different".

Isadora references Isis ( The literal translation is Gift of Isis in Greek). It melds the two types of mythologies that I loved to read about as a kid: Greek and Egyptian. Wikipedia tells me that Alexander The Great's conquest of Egypt brought worship of Isis to the Greaco-Roman world, so indeed the two mythologies blended.Words cannot describe how much that delights me.

On the subject of what Isis's gift is, I'm going to suspect that it's the child. A very cool Isadora at  Bewitching Names pointed out that images of Isis resemble the typical Madonna and Child images way before Christianity. That makes Isis The Holy Mother before The Holy Mother...at least symbolically.

Isadora's late ambassador was Isadora Duncan. Some say that her tragic death might be why Isabella gained more popularity than Isadora. I believe that considering how she lived, it's a bit of an insult to have her death be what defines her contributions to history. Isadora Duncan, taking off her first name of Angela, innovated dance. She also had a scandalous personal life that would make any feminist-thinking woman today proud. It fills me with awe to see the regal, poised pictures of her like the one at the top.She has an intimidating amount of presence that not social norms nor a high-profile life could interrupt.

Image Source

Friday, October 7, 2011

Girly Men

I hate that a male name sounding too "feminine" is considered a drawback on a name.

It insults my sensibilities as a feminist .I hate that while a girl with a "tomboyish" name sounds cool, a boy whose name isn't hard-edged or solid would gasp! not sound butch enough to blend into the gender binary and be teased to death. Never mind these close-minded children who probably learned to be close-minded from their parents. It's time we stop worrying about how tainted a boy can be by the pink haze of femininity and just embrace the beauty of a soft or elaborate name. Here are a few of my ideas:

Alphonse
August
Darius
Floros
Janus
Marlowe
Raphael
Skye
Sylvus
Zephyr
Granted, I do not find these names particularly "feminine", but they fit in the style of names that people often say have a feminine sound, and some of them are too feminine or are associated with girl's names.


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Thursday, October 6, 2011

L.M. Montgomery Is a Kindred Spirit

I have two jobs right now. During my free time, I am reading books to fill in small gaps of time. Right now I am reading the Anne of Green Gables series.  I am at Anne of Windy Poplars right now. This story, and it's titular character, has rekindled a sense of wonder and romance during a time when it seemed the flame of my artistic heart had been blown out.

I owe a lot to the wonderful author who created this world, miss Lucy Maud Montgomery.Isn't it ironic that she doesn't insist that Maud is spelled with an e at the end? Anyway, Lucy Maud, or L.M. Montgomery, has a lot to say about names. It seems in every book there is something said about names and their quality. I believe that were Miss Montgomery here today, she would be a fancier of names.She comes up with the most charming and suitable names for her characters. Here are a few of my favorite names from all of Miss Montgomery's work, even some outside of the "Anne Universe" as I call it:
Anne (of course)
Diana
Marilla
Gilbert
Ruby
Josephine (let's not mention Josie)
Matthew
Davy
Lavender
Carlotta
Priscilla
Phillippa, with the nickname Phil
Jem
Walter
Rilla
Emily (no matter how many people think it's a trendy name, I love it)
Marigold
Patricia, nicknamed Pat


There are also names that I love mainly for having a connection to the series:
Amaryllis :A fancier way to get to Marilla or Rilla
Averil: from Anne's first published work, Averil's Atonement
Avonlea: The name of the town Anne lives in
Cordelia: Anne's imagined name.
Edward: after Prince Edward's Island
Poplar: From Anne of Windy Poplars. It makes an interesting middle-name idea


All in all, it's my belief that Miss Lucy Maude Montgomery is a kindred spirit when it comes to names.She at least writes her character having thoughts about names that only a true enthusiast would be attuned to. Also, she comes up with the most delightful names.

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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Family Names: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Some people have a lot of choice when it comes to family names. They have a great aunt Heloise, and they use it as a middle name.
My family is not that lucky.
There are some good names in my family name pool, but there are also some names that would raise eyebrows, roll eyes, and just not cut it in current times. Here is a lit of the names my various family members have in no specific chronological order:
Gail(not short for Abigail. Just Gail)
Rufus
Miles
Viet (named around the start of the Vietnam War to add insult to injury)
Crystal
Alphonse
Gay
Millicent
Sylvia
Olivia
Julia
Bunny( she's one of my oldest relatives, so cutesy names are not a modern invention)
Ruby
Darryl
Mable
John
Jenkins
Stella
Alice( middle name Belle)

I take these names into consideration when looking at names. Still, there obviously needs to be more classic names in the pool. I feel there is room to improvise.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Japanese Names For The Modern Gaikokujin

I have a deep affection for Japan. There are so many aspects of Japanese culture that I admire and feel more connected to than compared to American culture. I especially love Japanese names. They are chosen always with a lovely meaning in mind, and a lot of them are wonderfully nature-themed.
One issue, however, is that I am nowhere near Japanese . Honoring this love for Japanese culture that I will share with my children (IE watching Anime DVDs) will be difficult to express in the outside world. I could name my child Megumi Nara for Naoki Akira, but everyone is going to comment on how un-Japanese the child looks compared to the name.Even if she or he is  part Japanese (I wouldn't be silly enough to give someone part Chinese or Korean a Japanese name BTW), it'll be a bit incongruous to give an Asian name with no consideration for American roots.

I put a lot of thought into this because indeed, no matter whatever is in my future, I want to have children and watch Anpanman and speak to my child in Japanese.Some people play french lullabies and give them little baby berets, but I prefer to branch beyond Europe.

Anyway, Here are some names that are Japanese, but are not too hard to pronounce, and in some cases, sound covertly English.

Aiko
Ame
Inari
Mio
Mori
Marie (pronounced ma-ri-eh)
Ruri
Rei
Ren
Suki
Zen (more of a concept than a name, but it works)

Monday, October 3, 2011

A Black Name

I need to clear the air. This is something that in a perfect world would not have to be revealed.
I am black.As in African American.
It is assumed that many name bloggers are white, and most of the ones who have posted pictures I remember are white. There is nothing wrong with that. I really could care less about the race of a blogger as long as they make good posts and do not offend others. I do feel, on the other hand, that there is little representation of a perspective from African Americans in this world of names.

 For example, Raven on a white person sounds mysterious and has a sort of stereotypical wicca-lite association. However, nobody talks of Raven Simone as if she was named by Pagans.Raven , along with the symbolic bird, also brings to mind the color black. Black people have been trying to reclaim the beauty of blackness for years, and names like Raven and Ebony are the few positive names that are associated with the color(or, scientifically, the lack of color)black.

I argue that having a name that makes one think of the color or black doesn't necessarily have to be the only way to honor blackness if one's child is black or dark-skinned.Josephine, for example, can refer to Josephine Baker, the woman called The Black Pearl. She is one of  the few icons we have from history of African American women being glamorous before the 70's.It's also a name not associated with "Black People" as much as La_________ or the crazy urban-legend names such as the orenjello and lemonjello twins.I think it's a shame, but there is a reason.

In American society, we tend to default to white. This happens with names. I mentioned Josephine, which refers to the amazing Black Pearl. Josephine is also the name of Empress Jos├ęphine de Beauharnais, who is known for being Napoleon's wife and being very regal (this is a simplification. Read the wikipedia article to learn more about her. While you're at it, learn more about the equally amazing Josephine Baker). Because of Empress Josephine, the name is not exclusive for one race. The same could be said for Josephine Baker, but the name is seen as less of a Black Name as other names given to African Americans along with "hero" names such as Rihanna.Does the Empress Josephine connection make Josephine less black? Nonetheless, I'd consider it for any child of any race.

Names and The Single Woman

I do not have children. I am not married, and I haven't gone on a date in quite a while. Still, I like to amuse myself by coming up with names for my future children.
why does it seem that single people have to feel guilty for thinking about names for thier future children?
Is there really too much thought you can put into a name?
Especially in this day and age where people have put more meanings in names than ever before. They didn't make such statements about how much teasing a child would receive for their name a hundred years ago. There is so much more to consider. You have to think about the name's meaning, the way it'll sound when yelled at the playground or used in full when angry, how popular the name is or how dated it is, your significant other's opinion, and a whole lot more.With all that to consider, could you ever start thinking about names too early?
I don't think so.
This blog is where I talk about names from personal choices to sociological musings. I cannot keep the sociology aspect of names out of the discussion ,after all. What everyone is naming their children now will define a generation.It's an exciting prospect, and I'd love to make the best contribution to the names of the next generation as possible.I am happy to share these thoughts out in the wide world that is known as the internet. I ask a lot of questions, so feel free to answer them as you see fit. This is a communal topic, after all.