Sunday Summary 4.23.17I had a Nemo moment at church this morning.

What’s a Nemo moment, you ask? It’s when you know you should know somebody’s name. And you almost do. Except you keep circling it. Remember in Finding Nemo, when Dory calls him Fabio, Elmo, Chico, Bingo, and Harpo. Anything but Nemo!

A family we know was sitting a few pews ahead of us, with their new baby. He’s got a great name – stylish, unusual, but very wearable. I know it starts with an A. And ends with an o. And my brain keep churning. Arsenio? No! Atencio? Not at all. Ambrosio? Wait, what!? Or maybe it’s an -us?

Total Nemo moment.

Actually, maybe that’s a Dory moment, because I was feeling very forgetful.

The thing is that I’m usually freakishly good with names. Always have been. I bet many of you who share a fascination with names have this same talent. Many people have the opposite experience – names fly right out of their heads.

And so we’re all stuck with these occasional Nemo moments, so close but so far away. There ought to be a polite way to acknowledge this, or maybe we ought to be in the habit of re-introducing ourselves. How do you handle these occasional lapses?

Elsewhere in all things onomastic:

  • I finally saw Rogue One! Just in case I’m not actually the last person, I’ll keep this spoiler free. Did you catch the part where they rattled off Jyn’s alias? Neither did I. So I looked it up, and apparently they listed three over the course of the movie: Liana Hallik, Tanith Pontha, Kestrel Dawn. Tanith! Kestrel! Even the obscure names are amazing.
  • Love this unexpected preppy surname name. Actually, I like Townes, too. And Brunonia Barry’s novels have warmed me to Towner, too.
  • A daughter named Avalon and a son called Largo? Seriously, Design Mom Living with Kids posts make for amazing name spotting. Read my round-up here.
  • This is really bothering me: for ages, Vin Diesel’s eldest daughter has been listed as Hania Riley. But lately, I’ve also seen her name listed as Similce. Which is it? An Entertainment Weekly post from last summer corrected her name from Hania to Similce. And this early 2017 interview has Diesel giving her name as Similce. Ancient general Hannibal married an Iberian princess named Imilce. Could that be it? I’ve found it mentioned a few places, sometimes spelled with an S, and even as Himilce. Vin’s partner Paloma Jimenez is from Mexico, so an obscure Spanish name tracks with their family’s background.
  • Duana raises an interesting possibility in this post: are name categories now meaningless? I agree that it’s usually much more helpful to hear four or five names someone likes, instead of hearing a description of preferred style.
  • Looking for a formal name for Lettie? Ren’s got quite the list!
  • Aglaia, Atalanta, Cassiopeia! Some great names from Greek myth in this post.
  • How fun is it to see Elea on video? Also, it’s amazing to hear her pronounce all of these great Cornish names for boysJory is a long-time favorite of mine; now I’m crushing on Treave, too.
  • Many of these 1917 names all deserve a second look.

That’s all for this week! As always, thank you for reading – and have a great week.

About Abby Sandel

Whether you're naming a baby, or just all about names, you've come to the right place! Appellation Mountain is a haven for lovers of obscure gems and enduring classics alike.

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  1. I was also confused about Vin Diesel’s daughter’s name this weekend. I wonder where the Hania Riley rumor came from? And am I the only one who misreads it as Simi-Ice, as in a capital I? Probably just me. 🙂

    Also, I love Kestrel on a boy or girl. I’m still waiting to meet one in real life.

  2. Loved Elea’s video on Cornish names – after I saw the boys’ video I checked out the girls’. Kerensa is my all time favorite Cornish girl name!

  3. Yes! I love Jyn Erso’s aliases. Some of the best naming jobs are done in the Star Wars franchise, I think. Unfortunately, I doubt I’d ever be brave enough to use a name like that, but that’s what guilty pleasure lists are for, right? 😉

  4. So what was the baby boy’s name?!

    *laughing* I have Dory moments, too. Usually, the answer will surface at about 3 AM.

    1. It still hasn’t come to me!! I’ll update as soon as it does – or I work up the courage to admit that I’ve forgotten. 🙂

      1. I keep wondering about what it could have been! Alfonso? Alfredo? Artemis? Aramis? Athos? I love a guessing game 🙂