Here’s a theory: when it comes to on-trend names, any use that increases our familiarity with the name tends to bolster the name’s use.
I’m not the first to think it. Nancy has covered the phenomenon of tragedy inspiring name choices. The OJ Simpson trial translated to more babies Kato and Kaelin. Plenty of obscure pop culture references translate to tiny upticks in use of a given name.
A few days ago, Ciara and Russell Wilson welcomed daughter Sienna. And I reflected, once again, that the runaway popularity of the Toyota minivan seems tied to the name’s increase in popularity. It’s not the reason, no. But the Toyota almost certainly helped parents view the double ‘n’ spelling as the correct one, even while the Italian city is the single-n Siena.
If any press is good press, then here are two more reasons Fox is set to catch on. First, even more episodes of The X-Files are on the way. That connects, right? A popular television character encourages parents to shortlist an unusual name.
But here’s a quirky one. Could the Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Mix Vol. 2 boost Fox?
Confused yet? British glam rock band Sweet scored a hit with “Fox on the Run” in 1975. It’s one of the many 1970s songs included in the new Guardians of the Galaxy 2 movie. It’s already been used in trailers. And if the movie ends up being half the blockbuster it’s expected to be, well … lots of us will hear “Fox on the Run” on the big screen shortly. And probably in more regular rotation for a few months afterwards.
Elsewhere in naming news:
- Such an interesting Q from Duana! They worried that the grandparents wouldn’t be able to pronounce Claudia, so they made that her middle – except now that’s the name they call their daughter all of the time. Except the grandparents … it’s a big muddle! You’ll have to go read it here. As usual, I think Duana is spot on – and very realistic! – with her advice.
- Elea shared my initial confusion over the pronunciation of Gisela. When I first heard it pronounce the German way, I didn’t recognize it at all! More in her Name Musings post.
- Y’know the 100-year rule, also known as the great-grandparent rule? In brief: our parents’ names sound dated, our grandparents’ names are hopelessly fusty, but our great-grandparents? That’s the sweet spot! Nancy unearths an early mention of the rule.
- Getting real about nicknames.
- Are you following this story about China banning Muslim baby names? Every time I start to think baby naming is trivial and insignificant, something like this comes up – a reminder that sometimes choosing names is potentially a signifier of essential human rights.
- Some great choices on this list of 75 unique baby boy names. Except I’m not sure many of them are at all unique. “Unusual” is in the eye of the beholder, but if a name ranks in the current US Top 1000, it just plain doesn’t belong on a “unique” list.
- Probably my all-time favorite tree name.
- A great find from Clare’s Scoop.it page: German names starting with B. Surprised at how few I recognize.
- Happy birthday, Ella Fitzgerald! Cleveland Evans has all the history of this much-loved name.
- Congrats to the lovely Alexia Mae of Names Daily on her four year anniversary. Her artwork is SO gorgeous!
- And lastly, the weekly newsletter is back! Missed it? Catch up here.
That’s all for this week! As always, thank you for reading – and have a great week!