Tuesday, July 12, 2011

What's in a Name?



I get to say my name a lot more often now that I work for jetBlue. When you think about it, you don't really say your own name a lot. You write it, and hear it, but unless you're introducing yourself, there aren't a lot of reasons to say your name aloud. But I get to say my name all the time now: "Thank you for calling jetBlue, this is Jayne, how can I help you?" I'm kind of surprised how often people say it back to me or ask me to repeat it again. "Jayne?" or "What did you say your name was?". But I am also amazed at how many people hear me introduce myself and then call me Dana for the rest of the conversation.

"Oh hi Dana, I need to change my flight." "You've been a big help, Dana" "Where are you located Dana?"

I occasionally get Jamie, but more often than not, I'm Dana. And if I'm being honest, I'm not really liking it. Not that I have anything against any Danas or anything, I'm sure there are plenty of wonderful, cupcake baking, Danas in the world. But I don't feel like a Dana. And it feels really weird to be classed with all the Danas. I mean, what is life like for the Danas? What are the Danas' strong points and areas of weakness? I just don't know how to be a Dana!

Names have been on my mind anyway, with an upcoming son in my future. But this Dana thing really got me thinking. I started to wonder--would it be possible to choose friends by simply hearing the names of their children? Take for example, three different couples that you'd never met or seen before, standing behind three different doors. Someone would tell you the names of each couple's children. Could you pick the couple that you'd most get along with simply by hearing their children's names? I think maybe you could. And I'm ready to try it. Come on, give me some names. Do it.

That's not to say I like every one of my friends' kids names. And it certainly doesn't mean they all like mine (sorry Parley). But it seems like when I find a couple that we get along swimmingly with, I tend to like the names of their children. Or at least most of them. And I generally respect the reasons they chose the names. There are some people who are friends--but you wouldn't hang out with them if you had free time--kind of friends. You know the type. You get along well, but don't really hope to get dinner with them. My guess is that you don't like the names of their children as much as you like the hang out friends kids' names. Am I right?

This is putting a lot of pressure on me, see. I mean, my friendships may be riding on the name of my upcoming son! I mean, sure it will affect him, but, me! What about me?
Will we be great hang-out friends or just passing acquaintances? I guess only September will tell. (Unless you wrote me off with the naming of my other three.)

Signing off,
Dana

40 comments:

Kelly said...

Based on the names of your children I am guessing you are the kind of person who likes to be different and noticed. Not shy. So I like that in people. But I also try not to judge anyone by what they named their children until I get to know them first.

So are you ready to hear mine? So nervous.....

Nathan, Evan, Drew, Audrey, & Eliza. It says I like names that won't make you take a double take but that aren't the same as everyones out there (except Nathan and his was a family name)

Zach and Codi said...

So glad you're back!!! You always have the funniest, thought provoking posts. You already know my kids names so I'll throw out a name of a kid that my husband went to school with...
Orangelo. Basically, he was named after Orange jello. Not joking.

jayniemoon said...

Kelly! 3 out of your four kids have the names of my nieces (Audrey and Eliza) and nephew (well, his is Nathaniel, but close) so that makes us fast friends. Is Drew a boy or girl? My cousin, Andrew, has a daughter Drew.

Codi, I didn't think we could become closer--but the Orangelo story put us over the top. So classic. First of all--orange jello is the worst! Why not raspberry or lime?

Tamsin said...

I've always loved your kids' names, so I am not worried for either you or number 4. Of course, that might not mean too much to you coming from a woman who named her son Espen. Or whose own name is Tamsin. Would it make you feel better to know that my son's name has nothing to do with a certain sports network?

But nonetheless, you have some untapped friend potential right here in Spanish Fork, approving the crap out of your name choices.

CSIowa said...

I am an enthusiastic participant in dinner conversation, but never a leader in it. If you'll start the line of the song, I'll finish it. You choose the restaurant, but please let them have vegetables worth eating.

Will it all be moot? Here goes:

Alice, Noah, Anna, Tommy, Amelia

Anita Cramer Wells said...

Dear Dana,
I've been interested to notice that when we moved into our neighborhood, with a lot of other families also moving in at the same time since the houses were being built, we had a lot of name overlap--3 Elizas, 2 Nathaniels, 2 Lydias, several Olivias--all about the same ages on our street. In fact, Eliza's Primary class was entirely Elizas and Chases (3 girls, 4 boys). So that seemed to indicate similar tastes in names and houses, anyway. Not that I'm super great friends with all my neighbors, even after all that... Interesting post!
--Annette (what I usually get called by mistake)

Liz H. said...

jayne! you have such a great name! since i have a daughter named jane, i hope that we can always be friends :) although perhaps you'll be disappointed that we spelled it "wrong."

-liz h

robin said...

YES! i couldn't agree more! what you say is SO true. i just have never had the nerve to say this aloud. but i'm glad you did.

my girls: parker, macy
my boys: oliver, sawyer

jayniemoon said...

Good friends all around. I have Alice on a list of girls names I like and have always thought Sawyer was a cool name. And you'll be pleased to know, Tamsin, that I am far enough removed from the sports world, that I didn't even think of ESPN when I read Espin. I would love to know how he came to be named--maybe if we run into each other at Fiesta days? (see, I'm a Utahn)

And Liz, I forgive you for spelling Jane's name wrong--you certainly just accidentally left the y out on the birth certificate and then you were stuck! :) Besides, she's a pretty cute little Jane--proud to share a name with her.

Anita I can't believe there were three Elizas and two Chases in one primary class! Maybe my theory isn't as good as I thought...

Robin I wish I could pull off a haircut as amazing as yours.

Lindsey said...

How about Dana for a boy?

Miss you so much Jayne. And you could ABSOLUTELY pull off that cute haircut!! Try it!

Kim said...

Oh Jayne, I feel your pain. I get called Pam everyday! 100 times a day!

My friends kids have great names. My all time favorite is Beckett and his name fits him perfectly.

Whatever you name your little baby boy, it will be perfect. I will suggest a few of my favorites though(just in case you cared :)).
Jack, Bennett, Westley, Will, Emerson, Ellington, Quinton, Beckett, Hayden, Avery and Hugh.

Love from Ohio!

your sister said...

Why don't you name him Katie?

Kelly said...

Drew is short for Andrew- he is a boy!

Nicole said...

Unfortunately, if I could, I would probably go back and change ALL of my boys names, but I'm not sure to what. I like Haley's name, but the other three seem to common. I guess that's what happens when you have kids so young. Maybe? Well, that is my excuse. Plus, I think you are stuck with my friendship based on the fact that we have known eachother since we were 4! P.S. I LOVE all your kid's names...even Parley!!

Anonymous said...

Jaynie Moon, It is such a good quality to make your aging grandparents laugh. Grandpa,as you are aware, is getting older but also better. I love the names of your children. More, importantly, I love your children and I love your name. Love you , Dawn Jayne

Anonymous said...

I have a son with a name that has become common for girls. I thought it was such a nice handsome boy name and was not to happy after just naming him, to hear so many parents calling to their young (girl) children, "Cameron, come here." Tyler is another name that is becoming common for girls. There would be a lot of akward silence next to parents with little girl Cameron's or Tylers.

Melanie said...

I completely agree. I hate to admit it, but I totally judge the friendability of people based on the names of their kids. I believe in different names that can be spelled and pronounced easily.

Our kids are Nolan (boy, named after grandpa) and Holland (girl, her name is a last name from my father's side)

Liz said...

With last name of Duckhorn, we felt traditional names would be best. Our girls are Molly and Samantha. Our intention was to call Samantha Sam or Sammie, but it never stuck... She is a total samantha. Great post!!

Emily said...

I love all of your kids names! Hazel is my grandmother's name and she has always been very beautiful so I always associate that name with beauty when I hear it, which is not very often :)
I have one child- his name is Judson Bailey. Everyone likes it because it is different, but he does get mistaken for a "Justin" all that time. Can't wait to hear what you come up with!

weese said...

When I worked at a call center I got called weird names all the time, my favorite was "Louisa" (actual name Alisa) because it made me laugh the most.
Biggest pet peeve: people who give their kids normal names with impossible spellings i.e. instead of 'simon' 'seyemon'. super annoying.
I have a Grace, Noah, Peter and Daniel (on the way in September too)

Teachinfourth said...

I think you should go with Aloysius.

That, or Teachinfourth.

Angela said...

My name is Angela, and when I use my name on the phone people call me Andrea.

We like family names, and my almost 4 year old is named Jasper, after his great-grandfather. Of course that was right after the Twilight hoopla (which I never read.)

My husband like to point out to people that he is NOT named after a vampire. :)

Anonymous said...

so happy to see you back and congrats! i am also a jayne! i hear ya on this and if the hubs hadn't disagreed with these, i would have some totally rad kid names: Sabine, Hank, Poppy and Sinclair/Si (Both after my grandpa.)
But we were blessed with three little girlies: Paige, Bea and Ginger.
I am always called "Jean" rather than Jayne. must be my southern accent.
Welcome back! can't wait to see your new little one's name!!!

Anonymous said...

Avery Luke, Jude , Josiah the boy king of Judah.

Tina Bee. said...

I always know my kids names are cool if you and Jed like them.

Jen said...

I love your names! Especially yours boys names, can't wait to see what you come up with!

Amy G said...

I worked at a call center and never had a problem with my name. I did have problems with perverts! I am so amazed that somebody knows somebody called Orangelo because I teach seminary and last year this fun girl in my class and she said that she wanted to name two of her future children Orangelo and Lemongelo... I think she will be so thrilled to know another Orangelo exists! As for my boys names they have a very strange connection to a current hot book and movie series but they were born and named way before those books or movies existed - no not Ron and Harry... my boys are Jacob and Edward. Jacob because it just seemed to fit his sweet little face and Edward is a family name and a name I would have never used but it fits him. I think your children have awesome names - even Parley. I'm sure you'll find the perfect name for your new baby. I agree it's good to hear from you - we don't know each other but you are so funny and clever and I thoroughly enjoy your writing... you could be a new Erma Bombeck... really!

Jen said...

jayne, If you want to mourn the balance of power being thrown off, go visit my blog today.

emily k. smith said...

Please oh please be my friend! My kids names are:

Hitler (Girl)
Stalin (Boy)
Kim Jong Il (Girl)

What do you think? Would we make it life long friends? I really like your kids names... well... most of them.

emily k. smith said...

Oh, I forgot to mention that we are also expecting and are planning on naming our next baby

Milli Vanilli.

(Just in case that helps you make up your mind about us).

Anonymous said...

I feel your pain. I worked in a call center and my name is Melissa. I constantly got called "Martha" or "Alyssa" by customers on the phone. And then my boss always called me Michelle! I had an identity crisis after working there!

As far as judging parents....I just met a family with a 2 yr old boy named Hud. Yes..HUD! Housing and Urban Development. My father was a government employee working in that division! And I had a BYU roommate who always referred to junk as "what a piece of hud!" So try as I might, I had a hard time trying to be objective about anyone naming their son HUD!! But they are turning out to be nice folks....

Eliza said...

Totally don't know you but your blog is hilarious. My kids have the kind of names you either love or hate: Theo, Ida, and Lars. I really love more classic names like Jack and Kate but those just weren't in the cards for us. I definitely agree about friends' kids names though I'd hate to admit it.

My name is Eliza which most Mormons recognize; but growing up in California in the 80s I was always called Alyssa by mistake. People often call me Elizabeth now, and for some reason I have never been to a doctor who didn't think my name was Emily. In fact I am officially Emily on my obstetrician's chart. It's kind of fun to be Emily now and then.

adriennep said...

I am against anything that rhymes with Jason but isn't Jason. Like Tayson, Brayson, etc. And anything that is or rhymes with Braxton--Paxton, Flaxton. You know there's a Flaxton out in Saratoga Springs somewhere! I am also against most city names as kid names. No more Savannahs and Bostons! Unless you name your kid Los Angeles, which is hilarious. I know you posted this a long time ago so by now I may be too late to save you from making a terrible name choice which would force us to become enemies. I love your kids' names. I think Ida and Bea are so cute. That doesn't help with boy names though. Also I am pissed at Reese Witherspoon for wrecking my oldest kid's name. He is a Reese. Always a boy name until she became Legally Blonde and ruined it. I still like it for him. And of course I love my girls, Anna Jane and Lucy Isabel. I think I like Grandma and Grandpa names best. Hank/Henry is my current top pick for a boy name. I know I would always call him Hankfurter but I think he would find it endearing, right? Obviously I could talk about this for hours so I hope you find the time to update us. Maybe I will buy a plane ticket so I can change it and possibly chat with you!

ray-ray says said...

Our boy names are as followed:

corgan
blake
cade
oneil

And our one girl is lily.

Good luck.

Heather said...

Ok, this is weird and unrelated so bear with me. I am a little behind on blog-reading, and just read a few posts on cjane's blog about the couple's retreat ya'll recently attended (which led me to your blog over here). I saw your picture and thought, "She looks sooo familiar..." Then I realized from where I think I may have recognized you. Did you happen to be at the Sandy City Justice Center yesterday afternoon to dispute a ticket? If not, I have found your twin! :) Anyway, not a big deal, but I found it funny and thought it was a small world.

Heather said...

P.S. I really enjoy your writing and think you're hilarious, so I think I will be sticking around here waiting for when you feel like writing again. :)

Kayli said...

I like Parley! But then, I think we have similar tastes in names because I have a Hazel too! (Born 6 months or so before Julia Roberts named her daughter Hazel-- and now I hear it ALL over the place.)

Rest of my kids:
Jethro
Ethne (one that definitely throws people off, but we didn't make it up, it is an old Irish name, see the movie/book 'the Four Feathers')
Talmage
Orrin

I think they're pretty great names. :)

jayniemoon said...

Ok, I have loved all of your comments and haven't even gotten back to respond to any of them. So sorry, because you've given me great names and stories and entertained me a lot.

And Heather--how crazy and random but YES! That was me at the Sandy Justice Court!! Darn ticket. I love that you saw me there! Wish we could have connected there!

yellowmutt said...

Hi Jayne,

So glad to see you back writing again! I so missed your blog. Anyway, I think that you HAVE to name your child the name that I had at the top of my favorite boys names list, because I'm never going to be able to...my hubby and I tried, and then we paid a doctor a ridiculous amount of money to help us try the not-fun-at-all way, and still no use. So, that being said, your new sons name shall be.....Finnegan. Finn for short. You gotta do it. for me. So I can live vicariously through you, and I will send him tons of fun stuff with his name on it. I will. Cause I would be his "name godmother" huh. well that was cheesy, but you get my drift.

Anonymous said...

I have three kids. Eleanor, Aloysius (but called Wish), and Basil. My obnoxious brother calls our youngest Oregano all the time. Basil thinks it's funny. I don't.

And I love all four of your children's names! (Btw, congrats on gorgeous George!)