Want to play a game?
Recently on Twitter, I pointed to a new name that a user added to Namipedia: Narelle. The submitter explained that it's a mainstream Australian women's name that was popular in the 1960s-'70s. A quick web search confirmed this. My description for non-Aussie readers was, "Think Michelle, but only for Australians."
An Australian reader agreed that she thinks of the two names as similar, so the analogy worked. And -- name geek time -- it was fun to think up. What other kinds of name analogies can we make?
How about time? Perhaps Riley = Kelly + 30 years. Or Messiah is to 2009 as General was to 1880? Try nicknames. Bob is to Rob as Bill is to Will. (Now try to work in Liam.) Or stylistic relationships, like Lacey is to Lindsey as Mckenna is to Mckenzie.
Better yet, pose them as puzzles. Mickey is to Brady as Debbie is to...? That one's tougher than it looks, a little nameteaser to keep you up late on a lazy summer evening. Post some of your own, and I'll play along!