English: Million Dollar Cowboy Bar sign in Jac...
English: Million Dollar Cowboy Bar sign in Jackson, Wyoming, USA (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Let me tell you about my Saturday night.

On Saturday evening, I found myself in Jackson, Wyoming.  And should you find yourself in Jackson on a Saturday night, an obvious thing to do is to go to the rodeo.

I can’t quite explain how very unusual this is for me, in every sense.  But what I can report is that it gave me some fresh insight into – what else? – baby names.

Kids as young as 5 compete in some of the activities.  The youngest are strapped on to the backs of sheep for a competition called mutton bustin’ – sort of a training ground for bull riding.

Again, foreign for me.  As foreign as being asked to twirl fire while standing on the surface of the moon.

And so maybe it makes sense that I encountered many names that were just not my style.  Girls’ names included Ashlyn, Hailey, Harlie Lyn and Dezaray.  Boys were Tanner, Tucker, Tyler, Tipton, Bode, Brady, Justin, Shane and Zane.

It got me thinking – it isn’t our different taste in names that divides us.  It is the fundamental differences in our worldviews and life experiences.  There’s a gulf between the parents of Eleanor and Kylie, Rufus and Tipton.  Names are part of it – a visible, obvious declaration of lifestyle in many ways – but they’re not the cause.

With that thought, my favorite things in the name-o-sphere from the past week:

  • I’ve stumbled across Viorica on the odd name forum, but always assumed she was a variant of Victoria.  Not so!  Melissa at Name Tag noted that she’s a Romanian word for the flower we call bluebells.  How’s that for a staggeringly sophisticated nature name?
  • Adley seems poised to be the entrant in the Addie-names category.  For Real spotted both an Adley Elizabeth and a Miriam Adley.
  • This is completely random, but I love the names of these chickens: Etelvina, Avelino, Silvestro, Genoveva.
  • I’m fascinated by Baby Name Wizard’s analysis of Bree.
  • Despite being a serious Sherlock Holmes aficionado, I can honestly say that John Watson doesn’t strike me as problematic.  What are your thoughts?
  • Did you see Elea’s post on the McKay family of Cardiff?  Their four daughters all have nature names – Laurel, Olive, Acacia, and Cedar – and this was the 1870s through 1890s!
  • Yes, middle names matter – and despite her ambivalence, this blogger chose some pretty meaningful ones.
  • Alec, Amelie, Rafe, and Iris – I do like seeing a sibset that I could cheerfully use myself.
  • Spotted in the Nameberry ticker: Exa.  Wearable?

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

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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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