Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Name Game

My brother and his wife are expecting their second child, a son. (That sounded very Biblical, no? I didn't do it on purpose; I told you I have a theological background.) Anyway, they have been going through the process of selecting a name. All this name drama has made me realize that being a teacher makes it nearly impossible to name a child.

I just realize that I have so much history with so many names that it would be hard to find one that works. For example, it only takes one bad "Jackson" or "McKenzie" to ruin a name. After spending a year of my life saying, "Kyler, don't touch him. Kyler, I said get back to your seat. Kyler, we're waiting for you. Kyler, we don't talk in the hallway. Kyler. Kyler!" I just wouldn't have the heart to name my own child Kyler. Even though I know that a whole new set of memories that are more important would redefine the name in my heart, I couldn't do it because of something else. There would come a day, in the future with my own child, when I became frustrated with that child. I would say to him, "Kyler, we are running late; let's go right now," and suddenly it would happen. The frustration and the name and the tone would transport me back to 2007. I would half expect "bad Kyler" to come running down my stairway. Actually if I ever have my own children, I am just going to get a baby book and cross out all the "no"s first. It will be best to get that out of the way.

As my brother and his wife brainstormed names for their child, I had my own conversation in my head that went something like the following.

"We should name him Ben."
Ben--Exposed himself on the school bus to an entire bus full of children.
"We should name him Mason."
Yeah, if you want him to throw himself on the floor and throw temper tantrums.
"How about Michael?"
Why don't you just gage his ears for him during infancy? He'll clearly end up goth anyways.

I don't say any of this out loud. My brother and his wife are still kind of mad at me because when they wanted to name their daughter Uvi, I told them it was too anatomical. Seriously, think about it: Uvi. They should thank me for helping them dodge the bullet on that one.

--I promise not to tell them about Kyler, though.


Rachel said...

An episode of How I Met Your Mother dealt with this a bit when Lily (a kindergarten teacher) and her husband were thinking of names for a future child. Upon reflection of that episode I realized that for me, a kid has to be really really awful to ruin the name for me. So far those kids have had names that I would never in a million years considered anyway. But it is something of an occupational hazard, isn't it?

I did snicker a bit at your tale, since Kyler was a name my brother & SIL were considering names about this time last year.

ms.understood said...

I love How I Met Your Mother and I vaguely remember that ep. I will have to go back and watch it again!

Anthony said...

That is completely true! I have had similar conversations with other teachers that were expecting children after teaching so many years. Then again, we do laugh at those memories of kids . . .. right?

Anonymous said...

ugh Uvi? Im grateful to you for not letting them name their child Uvi.

luckeyfrog said...

Love How I Met Your Mother too!

I have only been teaching 2 years, and I've already told my fiance that one name is off-limits. I could have dealt with remembering one bad kid with that name, but then the next year I had ANOTHER troublesome kid with the same name.