Here’s something that gives me pause: people making up creative names or nontraditional spellings of traditional names for their children. This seems to be a growing trend, with a sizable minority of new children being subjected to this, perhaps even a majority in some Utah Mormon suburbs. I know that certain black U.S. cultural groups have long done this, but I don’t know if the newer trend is just a white Utah/Idaho Mormon thing or bigger.
For example, here is a list of REAL names my wife and I recently collected from a photo site for new-born Utah babies. As you go through this list, stop and savor each one, seeing how it feels as you say it aloud or marvel at the breathtaking spelling:
As further evidence of this expanding trend even closer to home for me, my wife has 23 students in her kindergarten class this year, and 9 of those have unusual names, no fewer than 40% of the class:
So, I ask you, what do you think of this trend? If you are a parent who felt such a creative spark, what moved you to do it, and what have been the results? Personally, I’m pretty nonplussed by it—in fact, I wonder if it’s one of the signs of the times, a latter-day Tower of Babel, a signal of the impending collapse of civilization…