I spent yesterday at Taronga Zoo with 100 six-year-olds and wasn’t inclined to do anything but drink wine last night. I’d hoped something blogworthy would happen on the school excursion, but aside from a kid dropping a stuffed toy into the lizard enclosure, it was uneventful and exhausting.
Husband, bless him, sent me an article about America’s most popular baby names for 2011 that he thought I’d find amusing. So, just before the oblivion of bed, I decided it would make a fabulous subject for today’s blog.
I’ve always been bemused by the things parents find appropriate to name their kids. Let’s start with my folks who, in their infinite wisdom, called me A. House.
Being called A. House has always had its challenges. At school, being redheaded, I was nicknamed “House on fire” (not exactly an A. House reference, but distressing nonetheless). There were also lots of jolly japes along the lines of “If you’re A. House, where are your doors and windows?”
I distinctly remember a year 8 teacher giggling as she read out my “A. House” entry on her roll call. You’d think you could count on your teacher to keep a lid on the bullying, not inspire it.
When Husband first met me, he called directory assistance seeking my phone number. They hung up on him when he requested the number for “A. House in Paddington”.
My grandmother had a letter returned to her once that she’d addressed to A. House in Petersham.
Moving along … Husband went to school with brothers called A. Nuss and P. Nuss.
My friend Ken once told me the tale of an American school teacher he knew with a student called Ena Mel. Her mommy and daddy were inspired by a word they saw on a paint can once.
I could go on, but The American Social Security names register of 2011 is such a corker, I’m going to give you some of the highlights (along with the number of babies registered with each name):
The criminally inclined: M: Capone (5), Corleone (6), Governor (5), Innocent (5), Juvenal (12), Law (6), Notorious (5)
The illusions of grandeur: Princessa (5), Kingdom (10), Kingsolomon (5), Princemichael (10), Princewilliam (5), Royalty (11), Sircharles (9), Supreme (10)
The uplifting: Beautiful (7), Prosperity (5), Rejoice (5) M: Brilliant (6), Comfort (5), Courage (7), Famous (7), Marvellous (6), Mystery (5), Treasure (6)
The animal crackers: Tiger (6) M: Bronco (7), Cougar (6), Moo (5)
The geographical: Graceland (7), Island (6), Jerzey (7)
The starstruck: Swayze (5), Tupac (5), Woody (7)
Boozy babies F: Abeer (12), Chardonnay (9), Henessy (14), Tequila (5) M: Patron (5)
The just plain weird: Eh (7), Dearria (6), Peniel (5), Brees (5), Kdynce (5), Journy (5), Psalms (5), Godswill (7), Tron (7), Asser (6), Penisimani (6), Atta (5) …
Oh, and I’ll always hold a soft spot for the little sprog I heard summoned to his parents at Clovelly beach last summer: “Anakin! Come here Anakin!”