We gave our daughter a big, showy name: Clio. Clio sounds creative, and happily, it’s a good fit in that sense. Except. Our daughter isn’t especially outgoing. It’s tough to be a little on the shy side and carry a relatively unusual name. People mishear it – often – and it has to be repeated. Sometimes they ask about her name, and in those moments, I can tell – it might be easier for her, at least sometimes, to be Ava or Sophie.
And, of course, sometimes they flat out hear a totally other name, and you have to decide whether or not to make an effort to explain.
The other day, Clio was playing at a hotel pool. Another child – younger, but about a thousand times more outgoing – approached her and asked her name. “Hi, Leah, do you want to play?” When the girl’s father walked by, a minute later, she called out, “Hey, dad, this is my new friend, Leah.” And the dad – who, I suspect, is used to his daughter’s friend-finding habits – called out, “Nice to meet you, Leah.”
On the one hand, it’s a hotel, hundreds of miles away from our house. She’ll never see her again. Why make the effort? And yet, I never hesitate to explain.
What do you do in such circumstances, when you’re unlikely to ever see the person again? Correct your name anyway? Or gamely answer to your not-name?
- Hotel + pool = lots of reading time for me! I’m just a few pages into Maria de los Santos’ I’ll Be Your Blue Sky, and there’s a mention of a Ralph who answers to Rally. Pretty sure he’s a non-character, but I’m intrigued by the idea. Ralph always strikes me as a classic name that is almost, nearly, just-about but not-quite ready for revival. The right nickname might tip it in the right direction.
- Different name, same novel: Estrella called Star. Maria de los Santos strikes me as a marvelous namer.
- I’ve already finished The Death of Mrs. Westaway, the latest thriller from Ruth Ware. Much to my delight, the name Margarida turns out to be a major plot point. A mystery that hinges on an old family name? Yes, please!
- A fun find from 1820s England on name meanings.
- I love these names for twin boys: Hayes and Hart. I’m also crushing on Wilder and Wells lately.
- Oh, yes – I’m very much wondering about Zazie right now. Laura’s got just a tiny bit of info about it, but it’s fascinating.
- Not so sure this is a foolproof test … but it’s not a bad way to avoid trendy names.
- An oldie, but a goodie: If you’re kind of a nerd but don’t want your kids to have crazy names.
- Which brings me to this: the title insists that parents have name regret, but the couple that called their eldest son Kalel fifteen years ago? They all seem cool with it. And hey, one of the name regret stories is about … Sophie. So there’s that.
- What’s big in Bulgaria: intrigued by Raia and Kaloyan. The first one works in the US; the second, not so much. But get this: it’s the name of a thirteenth century emperor of Bulgaria, from the Greek phrase kalos Ioannes – handsome John! Even with a name so evergreen, there are still forms and variations I’ve yet to discover …
- Wow – pretty much in tears over this one: a witness to the horrific Humboldt Broncos bus crash named her daughter Logan Humble Strong, inspired by the late alternate captain of the team. (Found via the always amazing Clare’s Name News page on Scoop.it. If you have three or four free hours, head over there and get lost in all the amazing finds!)
- Also from Name News: the rise of Keylor in Costa Rica. 75 boys were named Keylor in the US in 2017. Did American parents invent it independently? I’m guessing the athlete gets at least some credit. Maybe most?
- Ooh, name conflict in families. Never fun. But Duana has some good counsel.
- Comparing the Social Security data to the Nameberry popularity stats … some interesting differences.
- I loved this quiz … mostly because the results were so different from the average what-should-I-name-my-baby quizzes.
That’s all for today! As always, thank you for reading … and have a great week!