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+5
Love it

Then: Mary, Jane & Susan

Now: Apple, Audio & Crazy

It used to be easy to tell gender by one's name.  When I was in high school, I knew a lot of Steves, Roberts, Johns and Alans.  All of them were guys.  As for girls we had a lot of Beverlys, Carols, Susans and Marshas.  

Of course I knew a boy called Lynn (I felt so sorry for him) and sometimes nicknames could be confusing.  Such as Ronni for Veronica and Bobbi for Barbara.  Unless you could see the name spelled out.  

And then there were always those few kids whose parents couldn't tell the difference between a first name and a last one.  You know - the Edward Edwards, or the Jackson Jacksons.    

But overall it wasn't as confusing as it is today.  Now names are all over the place.  

Actually, I don't mind girls with traditional boys names or some of the newer unisex names.      

It's the "crazy–out-there" celebrity baby names that I can't get my head around.  Sometimes I'm not sure if they are referring to an actual child or a cuddly little puppy.  I often wonder what in the world these parents were thinking.  Or if they were thinking anything at all.

But then I guess with a celebrity it might not matter.  The child of a famous person isn't going to live a normal life, no matter what his name is.

It's the regular kids whose parents think...oh, so cool - I'll copy Gwyneth and name my daughter Apple.  But Apple doesn't really work as well when it's followed by Birnbaum and especially if that Birnbaum owns a fruit market.

And then there is Jermaine Jackson's son, Jermasjesty.  He might not get teased but the little red haired boy with freckles and the last name Temple or King surely might.  

Or I.P. Freely. Giving his child that name should have been more than enough to send David Carradine to his horrible fate.  I can't even imagine a celebrity using this name.

But my favorite "out-there-crazy-name" is Audio Science.  I have no idea if this child is a girl or a boy and I don't even think having a famous parent (Shannyn Sossamon) will make this child immune from playground taunting.

They say names can influence your personality.  The way you view the world and in return the way the world views you.  Perhaps Audio Science is destined to work in the Audio/Visual department at his/her high school.  Jermasjesty is going to marry a real Princess and not the daughter of Bob Geldof.  And I.P. is going to sell toilet paper.      

Well, everything goes in cycles.  Names come and go.  One thing that never changes is teasing.  Especially on the playground.  And kids love to make up nicknames, for whatever reason.    

So I say, starting off with a normal name just makes life that much easier.

What do you think?

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Member Comments

    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Paula Bertucci wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • I’m all for creativity but must admit..some of those names given to children by parents who think they are being cool...is just not cool!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Tinaf wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • I had never heard of Jermasjesty (!), and loved the idea that he’d marry Princess...and wondered if Jermaine bestowed that monkier on his kid before or after Michael went with Prince!

      I agree that a celeb’s kid’s life isn’t going to be normal, and also agree that a normal name makes life that much easier.  Some celebs must follow this school of thought, too, because you DO hear normal names now and then.  Meryl Streep comes to mind—I think her kids are named Henry, Mary, Grace and Louisa.  And Mark Wahlberg’s kids are Ella, Michael and Brendan.  

      Anyway, funny and thoughtful as ever, Janie!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Mary Clark wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • Of course when I taught kindergarten...I had all kinds of names to come through my classroom.  Some I had to learn to pronounce being there was no sounding it out...some would not even have a vowel in it...can’t remember exactly that particular name but we had them.  

      But here are some that we had....

      Northern (sometimes I would even say...come on southern...and then say his name.,Northen) but it was also make me think of the toliet brand name.

      Shaniqua, Mercedes, and Pierce...not unusual...but he and his two younger brothers were also named Pierce....after their father of course.  Thank goodness...we only had the Pierce One.

      Then the one that tops the cake was one that attended my niece’s school where she taught 3rd grade.  

      His name was spelled “Shithead“...but the mother said it was pronounced “Shi -thead“...like “she-thead“.Now you tell me that was right?  Poor child.....I hope he changes his name when he is legally able to.  And you can’t tell me ...those parents knew what they were doing.....it’s just wrong.

      I like more traditional names...family names...myself.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Lena Eidson wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • Growing up, I hated my common name. Lena, of course theres the infamous nickname lean-on-me, lean-beana, you know, nothing bad. I just wished they would call me by my name.
      Then I went to work a few years ago in Public Health. Where I learned of children being named after venereal diseases. Im not kidding, a little girl named Cyfalis, when I asked her mother to pronounce her name, you got it just as it looks. And there was Gonreah. Yes he was Asia but his parents have lived here for the past 20 years or so, they knew.
      Today I am thankful for my parents and the love they had for me 40 years ago, I am pround when some call me lean-on-me because I have found in my maturity that at times I need to lean on others. Now for these children, I would ask them when they’ve dealt with enough from thier names, why not lean-on-me.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • Paula - No, it is not very cool.  I agree.

      Tina - Good for Meryl Streep.  Not only is a good actesss, but also a good mother.

      Maryclark  - Shithead!  You’ve go to be kidding.

      Lena - I can’t think of anything worse than being named after a venereal disesase.

      Deborah - Moon Unit and Dweezil sound sort of normal these days!

      Ladies - Thanks for your comments.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Chattycathie wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • When I was in high school a friend of mine got pregnant and called her son Freedom.  That man is now in his 30’s.  I don’t know what happened to her, but I often thought how that kid lived with that name.  Our friends used to tease, what would you call him for short, “dom” (sounds like dumb).

      Cathie



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      UK Girl wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • What about Bob Geldof and his former wife the late Paula Yates  their daughters are:

      Fifi Trixibelle Geldof
      Peaches Honeyblossom Michelle Charlotte Angel Vanessa Geldof
      Little Pixie Geldof
      Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily Hutchence Geldof
      They live near me and what a bunch of spoilt brats you have yet to meet ...

      Sorry I like traditional names - I have Alice Rose both names are family names



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      UK Girl wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • oh and I went to school with two huge Elvis fans - can I point out they came from one hundred percent Irish stock so fair skin , red hair and called their son who had the biggest shock of red hair Elvis ..... poor lad is 27 now and likes to be known as Sean .....



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • Darlene - I think Dar is a cute nickname.

      Bernadette - I’m with you.  I like unconventional, but not not weird names.  

      Cathie - Freedom ranks up there with the weird ones, in my opinion.

      Vicki - Yes, I saw Fifi Trixibelle.  And I thought of a poodle!



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • Termagsea— LOL!  That’s all I can say.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Robinesque wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • Termagsea, I noticed that the list of students was very “international.”  Impressive.  I could identify at least 5 different ethnicities there.  I feel that  because America is multicultural, it is admirable the way those that know where they come from, choose to honor their ancestry and use THEIR culturally acceptable names accordingly.

      Most culturally rich immigrants tend to visit and stick to their own socially, where they tend to be more at ease, so part of that acceptablility has much to do with what they call their children.  If they do not stick to THEIR own cultural names, they will be criticized, even accused of being ashamed of where they come from and not passing on the traditions of the particular culture.

      So, when we say “normal names please,” they ARE using what is normal to them, but our “normal names” are NOT normal to them.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Mary Clark wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • Robin..I do agree with you on your point...but I think for the most part...the majority of us are talking about crazy names...or “made up” names...that have no meaning behind them...other than just wanting to be sooooo different.  

      Prime example will be the one I gave earlier...why would you name your child (no matter where you come from) Shithead.  I’m sorry...I think those parents were very cruel.  

      But as far as culture goes...the people who own the business where I get my nails done occasionally are Vietnamese.  They have names Vietnamese names but since moving to the United States over 20 years ago...they have since changed their names.  His name is Joseph...and her name is Mary....their children’s names are Le...(last name is Le too.)...that’s a girl...John Paul.....(he’s a friend of my son’s)..and there is another son..can’t remember his...but I think it’s more Vietnamese than the others...and then the youngest girl’s name is Meredith.  So......they went with more American names.  I guess you can also tell they are devout Catholics too.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • Robin - You are so right about that.  I do agree that cultures should use their own names.  It’s the names that have no cultural background that get me.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Marilyn09 wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • I work in a doctors office and I call pts back for xrays. There are some people that do that.
      change the spelling of shannon for example. So I call - “see on an“.  And the person stands up and snaps- ITS SHANNON!!!!

      Really? you had to stand up and snap? Really?

      We have an old guy that goes by “Grumpy” and he does not stand up and snap when we call him Harvey.

      Go figure



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      PJ Anderson Brown Bag Party wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • Well, I have a nice name , Patricia Joann.  But my parents insisted on calling me Patty Jo!  Imagine my entire life in the 60s & 70s with the Petticoat Junction jokes from everyone, everywhere!!  So, in high school I insisted that everyone call me Patty. That stuck for a bit, I was happy. Then when I took a job with an elderly lady, hard of hearing, named Hattie!!!  It was a nighmare!  LOL!  So, I started requesting PJ. It’s stuck all these years. It can be a hastle though. “Isn’t that a boys name?”  I get a lot. And apparently, in this area of the country there is a party drink called PJ and everyone assumes I’m nicknamed for it. Than there are the people who call me, DJ-BJ-CJ-TJ-JP and just never get it right. I tell them I’ll answer to anything that ends with a “J” except OJ.  :)

      PJ



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Marya1961 wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • I believe that my name is the most well known and culturally acceptable in the whole world and other names are derived from it..Maria (being either Italian or Spanish) and so many names can be added to it..MaryEllen, MaryKay, MaryJane..etc..not to mention the fact that it is a biblical name...it makes me feel quite proud to have the name Mary.estatic



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Michel-lee Ortiz wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • I have a boy’s name It’s Michel-lee Pronounced Michael Lee I havent come across any other person female in my 43 years with my name and I like it ... Michel-lee



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • Marilyn - Changing the spelling of common names is very common today.  And sometimes the spelling does make it hard to pronounce the name correctly.  One shouldn’t get upset if their name is pronounced as it is spelled.  

      PJ - LOL!  Yeah..I wouldn’t want to be called OJ, either.

      Mary - I’ve always liked your name.

      Michael-lee—That’s very pretty.

      Thanks everyone for your wonderful comments.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Rachelle Smith wrote Aug 23, 2009
    • I think it’s horrible that folks these days are naming children such terrible names. They are not thinking ahead at the abuse and mistreatment they’ll endure from other children - who can be very cruel and honest! I had three names Rachelle and two middle names that actually were meant to be said together, and it’s not nearly as bad as some of the names you here today - but none the less I was traumatized with the country, down south name I was given.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Mary Clark wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • Well all I got to say is...in my southern drawl....

      it’s just plain tacky!!!estatic



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • Rachelle - Thanks for commenting.  Have a great week.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      (華娃娃) ChinaDoll wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • I am grateful and lucky enough to be able to add onto an English name when I became American citizen.  My Chinese name is very pretty, means perfectly real, feminine, pretty, in summary, means most perfect.  I disliked that for a long time for I could not live up to it.  So I created my French and English first name, captured in a Chinese body... just to add confusion to others. happy



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    • +2 votes vote up vote up

      Robinesque wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • Termagsea, why does immigrating to the states, have to mean that “foreigners” are ashamed of where they come from?  Their coming here, 9 out of 10 times, has to do with them wanting to better their economic situation, status, educational oppportunities and life in general.  I have never assumed they were ashamed of their homeland.  On the contrary, many immigrants I know are proud of what they have achieved and at the same time, proud of where they have come from.  Has it been your experience that immigrants are ashamed of where they are from?

      “IF they want to continue to carry on their cultural traditions, why do they come here? When Americans visit certain countries, we must accept their way of living and do as they do. Why do those from those countries not show Americans the same respect?”

      Is it not allowed to carry on ANY cultural traditions in America, land of the free?  THIS is WHY they come!  To be able to live in peace with the freedom that should be everyone’s birthright!  How are they disrespecting you by continuing their traditions, mostly within their own communities?  Yes, when Americans visit certain countries, we absolutely must accept their way of living.  (I lost you there). Were you saying that they should give up “all that” once they migrate?  Maybe you meant the laws.  Well, that’s for everyone, last time I checked.  I have traveled extensively and NEVER been disrespected for being an American or anything at all.  Actually, it has been my experience to have received “embarrassingly preferential” treatment!  Even now, living in a moderate Islamic country, all countries & monotheistic religions are represented and respected.  There are churches as well as mosques!

      In what way are Americans not respected?  I want to understand.

      Maryclark:  I am with you on the crazy, made-up names issue.
      When I read the list of names from Term’s daughter, I recognized my husband’s name, Moosa - which he spells, Musa, and is the Arabic name for Moses - and Khadijah, which is my d-i-l’s name.  Khadijah is also an Arabic name.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      UK Girl wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • Actually I like it when people keep their name which has meaning from their background - its their ethnic heritage.

      My cousins have now taken to using Gaelic names as we are Irish immigrants - I chose Alice Rose as they were family names  

      But these stupid made up names - thats vanity of the parent reflected on the poor baby who then has a life time of hassle or they change it ...

      My name Victoria was very controversal for an Irish Catholic - no other kids at school with that name .... hence always been Vicki



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Robinesque wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • UKgirl, I honestly did not know your name was Victoria.  My 10 y/o’s name is Victoria and she wants to know why I didn’t name her Amber?!!tongue out



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      UK Girl wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • Honey - maybe say Amber is a cats name but if you wish you can be Amber and we will all stroke you ....

      My cousin did that with her son he wanted be known by another name - soon changed his tune ... we are a cruel family lol



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    • +2 votes vote up vote up

      Alina Bartell wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • This is quite a subject, isn’t it? I am an immigrant myself and when our kids were born, we went through big length to find names that would be well understood in both languages. Husband family is ultra conservative and on top of them, all boys carried same or similar names (first and second) for three generations. That is so uncomfortable as well, when  the “Junior” eventually goes into 80’s... We named boys Greg and Adam as they were very universal. I definitely like names that have some deep history behind and great people who were associated with these. Feel sorry for a new made up names some kids have to carry.
      On the other hand, somebody just wrote me two weeks ago that my name in Sanskrit means “one with Divine“. It was unexpected and felt like one of the greatest gifts I have ever gotten.  Imagine that, after 50 some years...



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Queenbee-sweet wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • My friend is a teacher and one of her student’s name is Vajina, good thing the child is female.

      Remember that kids will always find a reason to tease no matter what your name is.  Mine is Stephanie and the kids would call me “Step stool“.  My sister Lisa would get called Pisa (she would reply by saying Pisa is not even a word) but that never stopped them from calling her Pisa.

      Also, unusual names sometimes become mainstream.  I named my son “Zion” meaning heaven - I have had atleast 10 people who named thaie kid that after hearing his name.  He is a teenager now and loves his name.  Except for the time he wanted to date a muslim girl and the father would not allow it because of his name alone.  Oh and his middle name is Christian, I think that made it even worse.

      But I have found that names only seem unusual until you’ve heard it a couple of times, then you get used to it and it becomes “normal“.

      The trend of the moment is to give a last name as a first name.  My friend’s daughters are Kennedy and Foster.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Deprogrammed wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • Who gets to be on the committee that determines what’s normal and what’s not?  Some are immediately inappropriate (who names a kid Vajina?) but others are parents who believe they are being creative, no matter what others think.  If nothing else, the kids will be one of a kind, or so some would hope.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Tammy Slater-Kendrick wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • I’ve heard that the weird names we hear about celebrities’ children are often made up for the media (i.e. it’s not the child’s real name). Supposedly, this is done so the child won’t get confused if someone calls out their name - it protects them from the paparazzi.  

      I used to teach at a college that was very culturally diverse. I have to admit that it could get really difficult figuring out how to pronounce names sometimes (especially last names), but none of them were as embarrassing as Vajina or Shithead. I really liked the exposure it gave everyone to the different cultures, though. We would always have end-of-class food parties and encourage everyone to bring a cultural dish to share. It was a great introduction to diversity prior to sending these young people into the workforce. I remember one Hungarian student who voiced a serious dislike for Bosnians. In the next session, a Bosnian refugee joined our class. It didn’t take long for them to become pretty close friends, so that was an amazing life lesson for her that I was proud to be able to observe.

      My own grandfather’s name was Shirley. He hated it and went by Roy (his middle name) his entire adult life. The only person who called him Shirley was his brother. Since my grandfather was a strong-as-an-ox 6‘5 Irishman who could be mean as hell - not too many people teased him about his name. My guess is that the hard exterior was developed BECAUSE of his name as a child.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Doreen XoXo wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • Robin,

      I think term meant that it can be viewed as disrespectful to American Citizens that people migrate to this country to grow and prosper and everything else there is to achieve here but yet, they wont change their names to Americanize themselves.  So it does seem they take what they can from us because they can.  They really dont want to be Americans, they just want what we have.  I have to admit that it bothers me too.  If you come to this country, wonderful.  Then you should act, dress, behave like an American. If any American were to move to another country, they would have to de-Americanize to stay/live/prosper there.  It just doesnt seem fair.   IMHO  

      xoxo



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Ray wrote Aug 24, 2009
    • I grew up with what I considered a boys name—Shawn and my middle name did not make my gender clearer—Dee. In my 30’s I decided to rename myself so I became Ryannon (pronounced Rhiannon) Layne. My daughters are Shannon, Ashley and Jenna and my grandchildren are Jacob and Alyssa so fairly ordinary.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Robinesque wrote Aug 25, 2009
    • Doreen, while I respect your opinion, I have to say that I am disappointed that you believe that.     Which country is this happening in?  Where do you have to “de-Americanize” in order to stay/live/prosper?  

      Are you aware that many foreign countries actively seek out Americans and Britains to lead their companies, pay ALL of their life expenses, including sky-high salaries, exorbitant private school tuition, ANY car of their choosing AND a maid?  And all they ask in return is their expertise!  No one has to be any less than who they are, as long as they are keeping within the laws of that country.

      So, Doreen, the flip side to my question is yours:  If you were to go live in a foreign country, and prosper, would you change your name to a name of that culture?  You wouldn’t really want to be associated with that culture, only want what they have to offer.  And would you act, dress, behave as said “new” culture if no LAW said you had to?



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Mztracy wrote Aug 25, 2009
    • Some names are plain nutty, usually done by the stars. lol

      But, really, why should you change your name? Is this really that important? I have a couple friends with ‘different’ kinds of names. We have nicks for them. No biggie.

      When they get older they can change them if they want to.  

      As for moving to another country, I will definitely learn their language, but would never change my name for anyone.

      Now naming a child a name that may sound like a ‘body’ part... come on mom! lol

      The first thing that came to my mind seeing this was... ‘judgmental much’

      With what was done to our country in the last 8 years, is this really important?
      IMHO



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Kim Brunk wrote Aug 25, 2009
    • My mother told me about two little boys she came across while working at one of her jobs.  Their names were Orangejello and Lemonjello.  Of course they weren’t  pronounced as they are spelled....let me see if I can get this right  Or—on—gelo and Le—mon—gelo.  How many times do you think they were called Orange Jello and Lemon Jello during their school years???



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Janie Emaus wrote Aug 25, 2009
    • Hi Kim,

       They were probably called the Jello Brothers.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Gigi2misscharlotte wrote Aug 25, 2009
    • i must have worked at the same place - i had a patient who named her twins the jello names, and one durpee because she misspelled dupree- and yes i type with no capital letters all the time. after reading so many comments, agreeing and disagreeing with some statements, i do feel that bringing one’s family to another country should also include that living under the laws also means speaking the main language of that country. i am rubbed the wrong way that we here in USA are changing practically everything to accommodate the  hispanic population. i have many friends from Costa Rica, and they speak spanish at home. having to learn the hundreds of languages of immigrants is impossible. if one is sick and goes to the physician who does not speak the language they do poses many problems. i can see only one solution, but that is not what the subject is in reference to—- i was called jean which is not as common as many other names, but i was embarrassed when i had to give my full name, alma jean, because i was then called fat alma, after the cartoon character fat albert. talk about hurting someone’s feelings..... we teach our children not to be cruel and hurt someone on purpose, but that does not always happen when no adult supervision is present. and the innocence of childhood is lost when a child learns and repeats what they live with in the parents presence.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Ray wrote Aug 25, 2009
    • We used to have neighbors with the last name Beech. They named their daughter Sandy and their son Rocky.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Doreen XoXo wrote Aug 25, 2009
    • Robin...I would NEVER leave my country so there would never be a reason for me to even think about changing my name.  

      It just really irritates me that illegal immigrants come to this country and suck out of it everything they can.  That certainly would never happen anywhere else.  

      I got this in email today.....thought I would share

      WHY IS IT.....IF YOU CROSS THE NORTH KOREAN BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU GET 12 YEARS HARD LABOR.....

      BUT IF YOU CROSS THE US BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU GET A DRIVERS LICENSE, SOCIAL SECURITY CARD, AND FREE HEALTH CARE?  

      WHO‘S BRIGHT IDEA WAS THIS??????  

      xoxo



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Doreen XoXo wrote Aug 25, 2009
    • Oh Ray...that is too funny!! LOL



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Linni wrote Aug 25, 2009
    • Frank Zappa.. lol need we say more? ROFL! one too many tokes for him! lol

      Courtney Cox named her little girl Coco! lol a food? PLEASE! lol

      Some of them names are just terrible! my first name is Linda and my middle name is lee, and OH! lol i hated hearing the 2 together! lol i KNEW i was introuble! i go by Linni because its a nick name my parents gave me, and everyone calls me that! lol

      My children are named after grand parents and great grandparents:

       My oldest daughter Stephanie Ann- Ann is my momitas middle name. i call my daughter Stevie! lol

      My sons name is Gerald William..he is named after my daddy.. however, my son has went by Billy his whole life because me just didn’t look like a Gerald, or a Jerry ( my daddy went by both ), and i figured my son is a Lithuanian Hillbilly, his middle name is William, we’ll call him Billy! ( my daddy also passed away 5 months before Billy was born )

      And my youngest Maretta Julia is named after both her great grandmothers!



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