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If I were to go with a seasonal or monthly name, it would definitely be something like Winter, Autumn, December, November, or even October (Toby is a cute nn), so I guess I'm part of the stylish crowd!
Very few of the boys' names do anything for me, but I rather like some of the girls'... I think maybe you've blogged about that before, how people are more willing to be daring with girls' names. Some of these are names I especially would have -- or did! -- like as a teenager, and there's another quantifiable trend, that teen mothers gravitate toward weird names!
While it's both wrong and alarming for a judge to make this kind of decision against the parents' wills, I have to say I'm fairly sympathetic to the decision itself. It sounds like the judge found a decent compromise to the issue the parents were having, and I can't blame her for being offended by the use of Messiah for such shallow reasons. Again, it was not the judge's place to, well, judge, but I think parents should think long and hard about using names that carry so much weight in other cultures, precisely BECAUSE they are not members of that culture. If white people getting Chinese tattoos 'because they look cool' is cultural appropriation, if non-Jews wearing Stars of David 'because they look cool' is appropriation, then non-Christians shouldn't mess around with loaded Christian terms just because it 'sounds cool.' ('Messiah' is just a word, people are named Angel and Jesus, blah blah blah. It's about perception in the culture. Angel is no longer a loaded term. Messiah still is.)
Huckleberry is an interesting one to me. Surely it can't be used without thinking of Huckleberry Finn -- who's sort of the ultimate old-style American child!
I have to disagree about Kip not being short for anything -- it's actually a Scottish nickname for Christopher, old and not often heard now, at least in the U.S. My brother's name is Christopher and we sometimes call him Kip. :)
I have to second the idea that it's the ugly American pronunciation of Louise that turns people off it. I've always hated the name Louise, something about the "wheezy" sound of it makes it impossible for me to say or hear it without it sounding like a sneer. Louisa is several levels nicer, though still not a favorite.
My kindergarten, second grade, third grade, and fifth grade teachers were all named Debbie. Most of the non-Debbies were Sharons.
I have a strange relationship with middle names in that I feel almost like I don't have one. My parents named me First Middle then decided to call me Middle, for reasons I can only assume included a desire to make my life difficult! :) In a sense, First is like my middle name, in that it's my name that I'm not called, but I also feel a certain hostility toward it because it's this name that is Not Really My Name but I constantly get called it anyway. It's a family name, so I would sort of hate to drop it entirely--but it's Not My Name! MIDDLE is my name! I also have a difficult and annoying last name that I wouldn't mind dropping, so when I get married I think I may become Middle First Married.
I have two big "pet peeves" with pet names. 1) Names like Fluffy, Tiger, Bandit, Simba, or Snowball, that are just done to death and meaningless. 2) Naming an animal after another animal. It just drives me nuts to meet a dog named Gator or a cat named Bear. It's like naming your son Daughter or something.
I think what signifies a "good" pet name to me is any name that acknowledges that the animal has a personality. Modern-human names, dated-or-strange-but-human names, even non-human names like Tango or Sailor, can all work--as long as it has some amount of dignity and substance. Your pet may not be your child--that may be taking things a little far--but he is a member of your family, or at the very least a beloved friend. He should be named accordingly.
@Becky, I haven't read every comment so these may have been suggested already, but I wanted to suggest Miriam, Esther, and Leah for little one! I'm afraid I don't have any boy suggestions...
Yes! I think of that story every time I hear the word palindrome. And that awful boy Otto who was making fun of her for being a palindrome--until he found out what it actually meant!
They left Bruce alone, but changed Liz to Andi? I would have called Andi the more dated of the two. Further oddness: when another Lois Duncan book (I Know What You Did Last Summer) was adapted for the screen, despite being set in the then-present (late 90s), the teenage protagonists kept their original names of Helen, Barry, Ray, and Julie. Julie is okay... but the others??
What aboutthe new Big Thing, Dragon Age: Origins? From what I hear from my gaming friends, it has a big-time character-driven plot and revolutionary levels of character development. I wonder if we'll start seeing a sudden jump in little Alistairs, Morrigans, maybe even Zevrans?
Mario + N = Marion
ETA: The person ahead of me must have been writing her comment at the same time as me, 'cuz I checked to make sure I wasn't repeating anyone! Great minds think alike, I guess.
@ Giulianna-- According to Wikipedia (and according to half-remembered interviews I've read) Stephenie Meyer has three children, all boys, named Gabriel (Gabe), Seth, and Eli. All names that I love; Gabriel and Seth are both high on my list and have been for years.
Trivia: one of the secondary-character werewolves in her books is named Seth.
The dangers of celebrity names really hit me when the Kobe Bryant scandal hit a few years ago. I knew of a slew of little Kobes whose parents were probably feeling very awkward right then! That's one reason I like the idea of naming after fictional people rather than real ones-- they never turn up with nasty surprises like that, because whatever's on the page (or screen) is what is, no secrets.
Speaking of which, daisy_kay, are you a fan of the Miles Vorkosigan books? I ask because Gregor Miles is on your list. Miles is, of course, the main character of the books, and Gregor is the Emperor he serves (and one of his dearest friends). They're my favorite books, bar none, so I think the names are a great idea! Most of your names are too fusty for my taste, but I do like a few. My second choice for a boy would be Edmund Ross. For a girl, definitely Rosemary Helen, with Marianne Charlotte as runner-up.
Hey, Laura, I just realized, you left out one very important name--Jacob, Edward's rival for Bella's affections. True, it would be hard for Jacob to get *more* popular, but the association with a hot and heroic werewolf can't hurt.
On the flip side of the coin, you have parents who deliberately shy away from these names because they're Twilight names. Which strikes me as both snobbish and nonsensical. Would not liking Harry Potter scare you off the name Harry? Well, maybe it would. But I think it's silly. We're not talking the names of war criminals. We're talking the names of fictional good guys!
Dorothy has three syllables and the nickname Dottie, which of course has T's instead of D's but will be pronounced much the same. Addy, Liddy, and Dottie. Sounds cute to me.
Nettie also comes to mind, which can be short for Annette, Henrietta, Antoinette (3 syllables), possibly Natalie (3 syllables). Nattie could also be short Natalie.
Teddy/Teddi/Teddie would also sound cute with Addy and Liddy. Could be short for Theodora... four syllables, but maybe you can't have everything, I don't know.
I always felt like my family had a somewhat odd naming "constellation"-- 3 classics, 2 trendy names. Trendy Name #1 was actually picked for a very sweet, sentimental reason, but Trendy Name #2 was just picked because it sounded nice. She's also the only one of us who doesn't have a form of a parents' name as her middle name. I think she feels like our parents just didn't expend the same kind of effort on her name; I know it bothers her. Granted, she's known for being oversensitive, but you never know, your kid might be, too. I think it's definitely best to stick with a pattern once you've established it.