Tweets from people about growing up with unusual names, a cautionary tale for parents intent on "unique" names or who didn't do their research on name associations:

Sample tweets: http://www.nola.com/living/index.ssf/2015/07/whats_in_a_name_do_you_struggl.html#incart_river


July 22, 2015 10:09 AM

How timely. Earlier today I was chatting to a colleague, who has Italian heritage, about this very topic - how the trend for unique and unusual names means many people get confused or can't pronounce or spell names easily. My name is unusual for where I live and I just answer to anything that starts with the right letter.

He mentioned how he didn't understand all these new names people were giving their kids, like his brother naming his son Nathan (yes, not so new to some of us, but clearly new to his family). Because of how his aunts pronounce their Australian English with a heavy Italian accent, the name sounds the same as Nothing, and they have spent years unable to understand why anyone would call their son Nothing. I guess, for the most part, it's all context!

July 22, 2015 11:26 AM

I remember my Mexican-American neighbors wondering why on earth anyone would name their daughter Maggot (Megan)! And I had a classmate named Benjamin on a study abroad in Asia. This is a name that doesn't translate well in Japanese, since benjo is a word that basically means "cr@pper" (it's the term Japanese Americans all use for bathroom, but it's considered crude and old-fashioned in Japan itself) and they're used to using -man as a suffix, e.g. PacMan. The Japanese students who hosted us could not believe his name. Guess that's the peril of naming in our increasingly global world! (That sounds redundant...not sure how else to say it though.)

July 22, 2015 11:20 AM

It's interesting that the sample includes a Carolyn and a Francis/Frank. I think really there aren't any "safe" names--haters gonna hate, to coin a phrase.

By Fly
July 23, 2015 1:59 AM

I was gifted with a 'Share a Coke with Simon'. There was an 'e' added with white out to make 'Simone'. (White out, as in the stuff you use to "erase" pen.. dunno if the rest of the world calls it that...)

No one in my family ever comes up on the key chains, mugs, magnets or other touristy stuff.

July 23, 2015 11:06 AM

When I was growing up, I was disappointed because none of that junk ever had my names (Miriam, Mimi) on it.  All of a sudden, since Mimi has become a baby-boomer euphemism for Grannie, there's stuff with my name all over the place.  I was actually thrilled to be able to buy my little grandson a t-shirt that said "I heart Mimi."