SS12.20.15Our one and only car is most likely at the end of its days. While we wait for the final verdict from the mechanic, we’ve been relying on ZipCars. And ZipCars? They all have names.

My go-to for this past week was Poseidon, a name that thrilled our seven year-old. “Are you picking up Poseidon today?” Not a car or the car. Poseidon. One rather grand name transformed an ordinary silver Nissan Sentra into a familiar, friendly part of our day. More like a horse than a car.

On Thursday we realized that our weekend plans made a conventional rental car a better choice than a ZipCar, so we picked one up Friday afternoon. The car – another Nissan Sentra, this time color black – did not have a name. On a whim, my husband and I decided it should be Morpheus.

It’s funny how much more I like driving a car with an identity. Obviously, I’m a big fan of such things. But ZipCar officially says that one of the reasons they name the cars is because “it humanizes the service.”

I’m sort of inspired to go name our blender and our toaster oven now.

Elsewhere in name news:

  • There’s been a flurry of celebrity births, all coming after my Best of Celebrity Baby Names 2015 post! I’m tempted to publish the 2016 edition on December 31st instead. I’m not sure if any of the latest arrivals would displace Qirin Love, Elsie Otter, or Calder Allan William, but it’s an interesting question to consider.
  • Funny, I was just thinking about Rosebud, and now here it is, as a middle name for Violet in this British Baby Names birth announcements post.
  • Are Ellison and Emerson too close for cousins? I agree with the Name Lady – probably not, but let’s look at the specifics. Are these cousins with the same last name growing up down the street from each other? Or is the cousin in question halfway across the country? And so on.
  • I’m a sucker for Design Mom’s Living with Kids series for so many reasons. But one of them? The names, obviouslyWhimsy and Glory aren’t my style, and yet I find them swoonworthy.
  • The most popular baby names in Edinburgh are different from the most popular names across Scotland. I suspect this headline is probably true for nearly every very large city. I’d guess that the top names in St. Louis are different than the top names across Missouri. But why is that? It seems like the havens of really creative baby naming tend to be either urban or really rural. Living in a densely-packed Brooklyn neighborhood or the middle of nowhere Alaska probably changes the way that we do lots of things, and naming our kids is one of them.
  • I so love this article, from the headline right down to this: The lesson of Emma is that it’s okay. It’s okay to embrace nice things that everybody else does, even while maintaining the notion that they’re yours alone. Though I do quibble with the idea that your Emma will be one of six in her preschool.
  • Let’s say your kiddo had a cute, affectionate nickname. And that you’d never really felt his given name fit quite right. Would you consider making that affectionate nickname his legal name? What if that name was Popcorn? Yeah … well, this family is seriously considering doing just that.
  • I saw the new Star Wars movie, and can I tell you? I think some of the names are going to be huge, especially Finn. Could it be this generation’s Luke? Luke had been gaining prior to the 1977 movie’s release, but as Star Wars became part of the fabric of popular culture, the name became an absolute staple for boys – the perfect blend of traditional name and current choice.

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. My comment has nothing to do with the post, but it is namenerdcentric for sure. I went through my first pregnancy at the same time as my friend Staci C. who named her darling little girl Ryan. (I love Stacy despite the fact that she breaks all my naming rules as if they mean nothing to her) Then I had my girl, Gwen, and for years I’ve been quietly smug that I hit the sweet spot – classic underused name, only one her age we know, all of that stuff which has no real meaning whatsoever, but still makes me feel, well, smug. Then I met a woman who would become one of my best mama friends, Stacy C., whose little boy was named Ryan.
    So when Stacy said there was a Gwynn in Emma’s class (Stacy’s name choices follow my rules, but I find them a little too classic, if you know what I mean) it was oh, ha ha, it happens.
    Until she told me her mother’s name is Kim. Apparently I am just fine with there having been two Stacies and Ryans in my life for the past nine years, but the idea that one of them now has another Kim and Gwen(nish) combo in her life is just NOT OK with me. I need this woman to move out of town, stat.
    And yes, I get that it is totally ridiculous, but I figured if anyone would be sympathetic, it would probably be here.

  2. The cars in my life have been named Blossom and Sapphire. I actually name other things too (my college computer, my pillow, my iPod, etc.) I kind of hope Star Wars makes Kylo an acceptable name. I wouldn’t use it, but it ends in -o and is close to Kyle. Might happen.

  3. I haven’t seen the new Star Wars, but I’m so grateful I didn’t name Cannon Finn like we were going to!! We have a Luke already and I haven’t even SEEN all the Star Wars episodes so I get so annoyed when people make Star Wars jokes. Fewf!! Totally dodged a bullet (or light saber) there!

    1. Oh, that is FUNNY – and so true! Interesting that you get Star Wars comments on Luke. It wouldn’t occur to me that parents chose the name because they’re fans … though I can see that a kid might get a kick out of having a Star Wars name at some point. I really should ask my husband if he’d like to name a child Luke. He’s enough of a fan that I suspect the answer would be a super-enthusiastic yes!

  4. We always name our cars. Our last car, ten years old midnight blue Mazda three hatchback, was Nikita. Our brand new scarlet red Mazda cx5, in keeping with the theme, is Natasha Romanov.

    I also name my computers.