Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Baby Names

Not that we are planning to have kids, but we still can't help but pick names.  Just in case, you know?  Within the last few months, we have added two names to the list.  It's hard to say why, but I guess it's a good idea because at my age, if we wanted to have kids, we'd probably have to do in vitro, and they'd probably have to implant a whole bunch of them, and maybe 7 would stick?  Then we'd be all set because we now have 7 names selected:

For boys:

Rubicon Julius Caesar Winston.  Rubicon just sounds so strong.  Especially if we had this boy, our first-born, in Texas.  Couldn't you just hear the football announcer talking about Rubicon?  And since he'd be the first born, we'd want him to be a leader, so we added some solid leader names.  We chose this name more than a decade ago, and for the longest time, it was the only baby name we had.  And since there's a chance that if we had kids, we'd only have one, and since it would probably be male (given my husband's family history of 4 straight generations on his father's side with only male births), we would probably use our "Bennifer" last name (a combo of my husband's last name and mine). 

Mario.  No middle name, just Mario.  It might be hard to explain this to our second son with straight faces, but technically, he'll have been named after a Russian monkey.  When we were in Red Square in 2010, there was one of those guys who had two monkeys.  Kind of looked like this:
Image result for rhesus monkey

But the male monkey (the one I held) was wearing an Italian soccer jersey.  And his name was Mario.  And when I was holding him, and he was squirming instead of looking at the camera, the handler kept doing a low volume shout "Mario!" to get his attention.  The female monkey didn't seem well, she was wearing a little dress but laying in the cart, kind of listless.  After I held Mario, we walked around Red Square some more and had lunch at the cafeteria in GUM (the Russian department store).  We had grapes with our lunch and my husband saved a handful of them and fed them to Mario and his sister when we walked by them again.  So our second male child would be named after a monkey, but my husband has an Italian last name.  So this child would have my husband's name. 

Lamarte Siegfried.  We added this name in mid-2016.  Lamarte was the first name of someone in a case I had at work.  It's pronounced la-MAR-tay.  The name just stuck with me, so I asked my husband if we could use it for our third male child and he agreed, but he wanted to pick Siegfried as the middle name, after one of his cases at work.  We both felt like we spent a disproportionate amount of time at work dealing with Lamarte and Siegfried.  It would make sense to give the name to a later child, to remind us that he probably needs a lot of attention, rather than just letting him get away with stuff like lots of younger kids do.  This one would have my last name because, given the middle name being from my husband's work, he doesn't want the name Siegfried anywhere close to any part of his last name. 

Baron Bush.  Yes, after Baron Trump.  And after W.  If we get up to four male children, we will certainly be super-wealthy, and if we're not, we live in Texas, so at least we'll live like we are!  This will make the late-born child feel very special, entitled, privileged, all that stuff.  And it's a good Texas name -- we'll never be pegged for the liberals we are if we have a child named Baron Bush.  Baron will have our fused last name since it's alliterative. 

Leroy Elmer.  After my grandfathers.  We just added this name in the last couple months (my grandpa Lee died in September).  My husband said in some random conversation that he had never met a Caucasian person name Leroy until he met my grandfather.  That just seemed weird to me.  I'm all about breaking down any racial stereotypes I can (incidentally, my college roommate did the same thing with her son).  I guess sometimes I associate a race with a name, but I don't to the extent some people do (my husband pegs some last names as Jewish for example, and I never would have considered it and usually can't say whether the person is Jewish or not, and I can't even say if I agree that last name is usually Jewish or not).  Living in Texas, I encounter a fair number of Spanish-origin first names (and I learned that Jesus (who I meet a few days per week to run) and Jesus (who is depicted in lots of church art) aren't pronounced the same), but I don't speak Spanish, so if I have to guess at pronouncing a name that's unknown to me, I defer toward an Italian pronunciation.  Anyway, to break down barriers or stereotypes held by anyone besides my husband, our final male child will be named Leroy.  And middle name for my other grandfather.  Glue shouldn't get to monopolize the name.  Nor Bugs Bunny.  It's a very nice name.  But given the glue association, best suited to be a middle name I suppose.  So Leroy will have our fused last name -- he can't have my last name since my grandfather had that exact name and early in my legal career, I defended a credit reporting company, and I learned having two identical names in the same family can cause a lot of needless headaches. 

It's been less pressing to pick girl names with my husband's family birth history.  But of course I had a name that I'd used for my egg baby in high school, and there are family names and other pretty names to consider. 

So, for girls:

Tilapia Sleven Emerald Mafalda.  Our first girl will be Tilapia because that name is way too pretty to be only used for a fish.  Even though I'm allergic to seafood, I've had an affinity for this name for a long time for some reason.  I had pretty much forgotten how long until Mardi Gras last month, when my best friend reminded me about the original Tilapia in my life:  about 20 years ago, I had a freakishly long forearm hair that I named Tilapia.  Tilapia on my arm died (just like the egg that could be fertilized to be a female child Tilapia will probably die inside of me, but just in case...).  My husband actually encountered a real person at work named Tilapia.  It wasn't a good experience for him, but he likes tilapia the fish enough that he was willing to agree that we could use Tilapia as our first female child's name.  As for middle names, it's a random combination that we liked.  Sleven was a movie and it just sounds cool.  Emerald was my high school choice for my future daughter's name, and I used it for my egg baby.  Mafalda is for my husband's grandmother.  It's one of those old school Italian names that you just don't ever hear anymore on anyone under the age of 80 (and very few women over 80 even!).  For unknown reasons, whenever we talk about Tilapia, we assume she has my husband's last name (even though Mafalda did not, she was on his mom's side). 

Florence Genuvia.  Florence is after the city in the country that has our hearts.  And it's one of those pretty names you just don't hear very often.  On my list of things to do when I take over the world is to rename cities in foreign countries (and the countries themselves) so that they're pronounced basically the same everywhere.  It's crazy that we say Paris instead of Pa-ree, Florence instead of Fee-ren-zay, and Germany instead of Deutschland.  It's just as bad in Italian -- they say Monaco instead of Munchen (and we say Munich, also not Munchen), and then they have to distinguish the principality of Monaco by using its full name.  So we really shouldn't have picked Florence since technically, I think everyone in the whole world should know that city in Italia as Firenze, but it's still a pretty name and not too common anymore.  As for the middle name, yes, it's chosen after the prescription drug, but with an Italian spelling.  If we're not doing the first name the proper Italian way, at least we can spell the middle name an Italian way.  Drug companies are really picking all the good names. Given the Italian connection, this daughter would have my husband's last name. 

So if we have septuplets, or I have seven individual births, or some other multiple birth combinations adding up to seven kids, we'll be all set as far as names go! 

But yeah, we'll keep taking precautions to prevent that. 

So really, I don't lay claim to any of these names.  Feel free to use them for your own offspring.  Or suggest them to anyone you know who is pregnant.  However, if the person is having male twins, please join me in pleading that they be named Jesus (not the Spanish pronunciation), and Lucifer.  It will just be so interesting to see how that plays out!  Are people inherently nicer to Jesus?  Or does Jesus do bad stuff and blame it on his brother?  Or is Lucifer the naughtier one? 


  1. I would totally read a blog of entirely posts like this. ;)

  2. Bwahahah! Love this. Have you seen the movie Captain Fantastic? They have a ton of kids (maybe 7) and made up all the names, which are all pretty wacky but also pretty cool!

    1. Haha, I have not. Will have to check it out.