Naming our first child was easy. Max: strong, concise, doesn’t rhyme with fart, best kind.

We later discovered it was the most common dog name in the world. No biggie, till one of them moved in next door. Despite some occasional neighbourhood confusion about who shit on the lawn, it was a solid choice for our son.

Our second child – a girl – due in December might not be so fortunate. She’ll be lucky to get a name at all with all these bloody rules.

Her name can’t be too common. My family doc has 30 patients named Ava, all under age five. Brooklyn is so overdone we’d be better off naming her Idaho.

It can’t be too celebrity-trendy like Suri or Harlow. May as well call her Rehab and get it over with.

It can’t be too Biblical like Ruth or Bathsheba, because the Bible is really stupid.

It can’t be festive. She’ll be born around Christmas, but forget Holly and Merry. Noelle? No way in hell. If we were taking that route, we’d go all in and name her Jesus.

It can’t be too long like Alexandria or Wilhelmina. Too much to say. Too much to spell. Max hates writing his measly three- letter name. He should be thankful – we almost named him Shamalamadingdong.

It can’t be the name of a friend’s kid so Claire, Charlotte, Madelyn, Avery, Juliet, and pretty much every perfectly good name ever are all forbidden.

It can’t sound gross like Clotilda. Dudes. CLOTilda.

It can’t be a compass direction, because no. Just no.

It can’t be Minnie, because Max and Minnie. Pads.

It can’t be Ruby, because Max and Ruby. Rabbits.

It can’t be Luka or OJ. Because murder.

It can’t be too Disney, like Ariel or Mulan or Lady or Tramp.

No hyphens allowed. The only way she’ll be an Elly-May or an Emmy-Lou is if she comes out holding a full-size guitar, which she better effing not because ouch splinters.

It can’t be a name best known for slithering out of Hannibal Lecter’s mouth.

It can’t be a name that’ll get her stuffed into a locker, like Fatima or Dorcas.

It can’t be a stripper name, like Honey or Bambi or Peaches McDrips.

It can’t have a super weird meaning. Who cares if her name means “ugly head” (which Kennedy does), but you might not want her name to mean “bearer of death” (which Persephone does).

It can’t be too ethnic, like Laquanda or Wang Jing or Shakira. We make translucent, Newfie children. It would be ridiculous.

And it has to be something my husband agrees with. Which means I’m screwed. He agrees with me on the making of the baby, but nothing much after that. Maybe we could just name her Jizzelle or Splooge.

So, with all these rules, all I’m left with are three possible names for our sweet baby girl: Lamp, Turnip, and Toaster.


This article was previously published in the October edition of The Overcast.