Anal? Rogue? Lucifer?
These certainly don't sound like names that would adorn a sweet and cherubic bundle of joy, but surprisingly, they are. Though hard to believe, parents have actually bestowed these lovely names on their children, leaving their unwitting charges to fend for themselves in the playgrounds of their futures.
Whatever would possess a parent to name their child something that would inevitably set them up for a lifetime of embarrassment, scorn and possibly physical harm is beyond me, because, really -- could someone named after a much-maligned part of the body or The Devil himself really have any other fate?
Recent times and modern parenting styles have spawned (pun intended) a plethora of non-traditional names that have been bestowed on the next generation of kids. Classic, "old-fashioned" names such as John, Mary and William have given way to Connor, Aiden and Ethan. Lovely names, the latter, nothing wrong with these at all. Individuality and a bit of flair never did any child wrong. It is when parents cross over the line and decide to provide their child with a gift that keeps on giving: a name that will be fodder for schoolyard bullies when they're young and scant job opportunities when they're old, because let's be honest: it's the kids who bear the brunt of their parents' "creativity" in the naming department.
Case in point: the poor child incredibly named "Adolph Hitler Campbell."
Out of all of the names in the world, why on earth would parents choose one of the most despised historical figures to ever blemish the earth with his presence? The parents of little Adolph Hitler Campbell lost custody of him and siblings (one of which was named "Aryan Nation") and rightly so. Unfortunately, these poor children, who had nothing to do with the choice of names that they were given, are now in the custody of the state, away from their parents and any sense of family that they once had (though one must question the ability of parents to adequately raise their children in light of the names that they chose for them). How is this right?
I recall going into a coffee shop a few years ago and being served by a very sweet-looking teenage girl who provided me with exemplary service. Nice, right? Well, yes...except when I looked at her name tag, I was shocked to find that her name was Lucifer. That's right, LUCIFER. Now, I don't know if this was some type of a joke, if it was teenage rebellion on steroids or just the result of parents who felt that they were "sticking it to the man" or the establishment or, whatever...nonetheless, I felt incredibly sorry for this girl. Even if she had determined that she was going to rename herself after "The Prince of Darkness" it was a bad move. After all, most of us want to evoke positive imagery when our names are mentioned, not thoughts that conjure up fire and brimstone, whether you believe in "The Devil" or not. Either way, it's not positive.
Because of the increasing trends behind baby naming in modern times, certain countries have taken it upon themselves to put a stop to the insanity. If you live in Germany, Sweden, China or Japan, you are limited to what you can name your children. Now, while this may seem somewhat totalitarian in theory, one has to respect the fact that these countries are trying to protect the kids of parents who may have less than stellar abilities to choose a reasonable baby name. Thankfully, a level-headed judge in New Zealand allowed "Talula Does The Hula From Hawaii" to change her name after the nine-year-old girl couldn't take the humiliation and trauma of having to live with such a moniker. Unfortunately Number 16 Bus Shelter did not have the same fate and is living on in inevitable embarrassment, much to the chagrin of anyone who has the random fortune of interacting with this child. Heck, even Zowie Bowie, the son of über-cool rock star David Bowie wanted to be a little more "normal" and changed his name to Duncan.
I'm all for uniqueness when it comes to naming a child. After all, no one wants to give their child a name that will be shared by three or more kids in their grade school classroom. That being said, parents still need to consider certain parameters when making a decision that will affect their child for many years to come, if not for their whole lives. This is serious stuff, folks.
Let's stop the insanity, parents. Naming your kid "ESPN," "Hashtag" and "Fish and Chips" (twins) is bad enough; saddling them with "Sing Praises," "Brfxxccxxmnpcccclllmmnprxvclmnckssqlbb11116" and "Number 16 Bus Shelter" is downright wrong.
Call me a prude, a stick-in-the-mud or a square, but I long for the days of John and Martha.