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Are Hipster Names Dooming Your Kids to Failure?

baby-baby-namesI’m loving the comment thread over at the OhDeeDoh design site, which stepped into the baby name arena with a post on the hottest trends of 2010.

Short names, retro names, names with L and Felix are apparently the next “It” thing when it comes to labeling tots.

But is it always so good to be on the cutting edge?

One commenter, an employer who frequently hires young people, opened a Pandora’s Box of name debate by arguing that kids with weird or oddly spelled names might be cutesy on the playground or in kindergarten, but how about later in life, when they attempt to become professionals?

“And like it or not, names are part of first impressions. If I see two resumés and one job applicant has a respectable, solid name (say, Anna or Jacob) while the other has an “original” or alternately spelled name (say, Brylee or Dacoda) I am going to assume, rightly or not, that the latter was brought up in a household where the parents didn’t care about education (i.e., spelling) and had low aspirations for their children. Conversely, I will assume (again, rightly or wrongly) that the person with the more traditional or “normal” name was brought up with traditional or normal values. Of course this shouldn’t reflect on the kids, but really–who would you want doing your emergency C-section–a Thomas or a Crayten? An Elizabeth or a MaKayli?”

We had a similar debate in our household when trying to come up with a name for our daughter, settling on what we thought was an old fashioned name with cute kid potential but also something she could put on a business card: Star Galaxy Unicorn Bliss.

Kidding.

I have yet to encounter a wave of professionals with cutesy or too-cool-for-school names, but I’ve heard plenty around the playground. And thinking about that comment above and some of the names I’ve heard in San Francisco — Cougar, Jaguar, Treasure and Coyote (what is up with this cat trend anyway?) — it now occurs to me that I just might have second thoughts about letting someone perform a serious operation on me or a loved one if they handed me a card with my all time favorite overheard kid name: Soup. Yeah, second opinion please.

(I’m writing this on the couch while my wife sits next to me with her own laptop, and she isn’t so down on these names, arguing that by the time this hipster trend hits the professional world, cutesy names will be the norm and we won’t even notice a Treasure or a Coyote.)

Thoughts?

– Mike @ Cry It Out!

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