Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Classifications of Names to Avoid When Naming Your Child

1. Christian Virtues. (Sobriety, Chastity, etc.) The pilgrims tried it, God love them, but they didn't quite swing it. Plus we all know what girls named Chastity end up like.

2. Pretty Much All Manner of Botanical Phenomena. (Leaf, Flower, Fern) Let's leave the 60s where they wilted.

3. Popes. (Pius, Innocent, Boniface, Clement) Gregory and any permutation of John Paul excepted.

4. If you're an American who has recently converted to Islam, avoid naming your child. Have someone else do it for you.

5. Obscure U.S. presidents. (Rutherford, Millard, Grover) And for fans of Truman, actually make the middle initial stand for something this time, you smarmy bastards.

6. Minor Prophets. (Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Obadiah) Hosea is fair game if you're black.

7. T.S. Eliot poems. (Prufrock, Gidding) If you want your kid to go through life with a "pair of ragged claws" complex, then fine, go for it.

8. Knights of the Round Table. (Gawain, Perceval, Bedevere) Let's dissolve this fellowship once and for all, shall we?

9. Dictators, but not because they tend to commit genocide. Their names just suck. (Slobidan, Pol, Ho)

10. Aloysius.

Special thanks to my brother James for his contributions.


Angie said...

Hilarious! My eldest is named John; the next one we named Paul. We joked that we would name our third either Clement or Ringo. Turns out #3 was a girl.

Evan G. said...

My brothers real name is Lincoln. But does that not count because its a last name?

Jeff Moss said...

Presidential last names are different from obscure presidential first names (although I think more boys ought to be named Abraham).

I saw a review of Shyamalan's Lady in the Water that said his character "Cleveland Heep" was one of the best-named movie characters in a long time. But maybe Mr. Heep was named more after the city than after the President.

Thomas Banks said...


The only proscribed presidential names were those of obscure presidents. Guys with their face on Mt. Rushmore or on legal tender don't count.