Why Busy Philipps Really Named Her Second Daughter Cricket

I just saw a video on People.com that claimed to explain how Busy Philipps and husband Marc Silverstein came up with a name for their second daughter.

I’m writing this from memory, because I don’t want to sit through another showing of an annoying commercial featuring a Merlin-like Wizard or Philipps’ paid comments on behalf of Clorox about a contest of some sort that could earn a lucky winner $20,000 which, Philipps suggested, could “come in handy” to cover your holiday expenses. So between the commercial and the Clorox promo, Phillips was kind enough to share a few recollections about how she and her husband named their second daughter. Please forgive me if I leave a few details out of this re-telling.

Before the baby was born, she had come up with a list of names. But after her daughter was born none of the names seemed to fit:  About a week went by and the hospital called asking her to stop in and pick a name, already. So husband Marc Silverstein, a screen writer and producer, started peppering her with cute name suggestion and they started to picture their daughter growing up. Here are two of the images they were thinking about:

-She’ll be the favorite camp counselor.

-And, she’ll be totally hot in college

If they really had those images in mind,  they would have come up with an “all-American, freckle-faced name” like Becky or a “hot in college name” like Sabrina, Brooke or Madison.

Unfortunately, it’s hard to picture a girl named Cricket ever getting past the age of 5. Because Cricket is the perfect nickname for a cute little toddler playing with dolls, petting puppies, and chasing butterflies. As far as I can tell, there is nothing remotely sexy about the name Cricket. Which is why Busy Philipps’ baby-naming story doesn’t make much sense.

So what does make sense? You may recall that Philipps and Silverstein had named their first daughter Birdie (after Ladybird Johnson). I don’t know if they read my “Naming Siblings” article about picking names that go well together, but they seem to have been trying to come up with names of other “cute little critters” to go with Birdie.

Robins are cute and they chirp, but Robin doesn’t go well with Birdie (because Robin is a specific type of bird and Birdie is juvenile word for birds).  Bedbug is another cute critter name they may have considered, but the idea of giving their child a name with the word “bug” may have killed that idea. So they settled on Cricket, not thinking what it would look like on their daughter’s college application or job resume: juvenile.

Because parents like to give their children names that go well with one another, I think the real reason Philipps and Silverstein named their second daughter Cricket is because they named their first daughter Birdie and were looking for a diminutive sibling name to go with it.

So the moral of this story is: don’t pick a silly name for your first child, because that might cause you to pick a silly name for your second child, too.

The Baby Name Police should have warned Philipps and Silverstein about giving Birdie a juvenile name likely to be embarrassing when she gets beyond elementary and middle school. We’re giving her a belated ticket for the name Cricket, which is just about as juvenile as Birdie likely to come across as demeaning as she moves on to high school, college and adulthood.

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