We’ve been deep in Cabbage Patch Kids nostalgia on Instagram and Facebook this week. During the initial craze, my parents managed to bring home three of the impossible-to-find dolls for my sisters and I. I’m sure they thought it was crazy, and it probably was – a little. But I still remember that as the most magical of gifts.
No small part of it: the NAMES. Up until then, all dolls had the same name. A shelf full of Betsys or Kimberlys or Barbies. (Okay, Barbie had her own aisle.)
Maybe the reason parents have gravitated towards more and more unusual names is that those dolls gave us the idea that we shouldn’t have to share our names?
Oh, I love a good royal name story. Nancy has the lowdown on Melita. By 2023 standards, it sounds a little like a fancy espresso machine, but I still think the story is all kinds of fabulous.
I always wonder about extreme character names. I read Leigh Bardugo’s Ninth House, the book that introduced Galaxy “Alex” Stern. She returned in the sequel Hell Bent, and now Amazon is developing the books into a series. Will the show reveal her full name, or just stick with Alex? I don’t remember a good reason for her character to have such a truly unusual given name. It reminds me of the random character names always popping up in Elin Hildebrand novels. Think Cygnet and Regency – always given to bit characters, too, usually just mentioned in passing.
Is everyone in Burlington, Vermont named Sam? Not really, but there definitely are certain names that feel like they fit a place, and according to this TikTok, Burlington is Sam Central. Seems right. Related: I’ve been tabulating character names from Hallmark Christmas movies, and while the project is bigger than I imagined, names like Ben, Sam, and Jack are definitely over-represented.)
This one is new to me: Tage. As in Tage Thompson of the NHL’s Buffalo Sabres. His younger brother Tyce, and he’s also a hockey player. Dad is Brent; Tage’s son is Brooks. Tage might be a Danish name meaning “to capture.” It’s having a moment in Sweden now. Since Tage’s dad was also a hockey player, it’s possible he heard it in the wild, though since Tyce feels like more of a modern invention, maybe they both are?
Spotted online: a newborn named November Rein. Love the sound of November, and most calendar names in general. But November Rein is so very Guns N’ Roses to me. Am I overthinking that? I mean … it’s a serious anthem, but it’s not exactly a lullaby, so … it feels like you’d almost have to be a GNR superfan to use it. (Or have literally never heard a GNR song, which strikes me as unlikely.) Hmmm …