Kristin Cavallari and Jay Cutler Pick Rapidly-Rising Name for Son, Jaxon Wyatt

When the 2012 Social Security Administration popularity data was published, one of fastest-rising tends I noticed was the use of the letter “x” to give boys’ names a macho vibe.

Now Kristin Cavallari and husband Chicago Bears QB, Jay Cutler, have named their second son Jaxon Wyatt–giving their baby boy a middle name that is ranked #6 on my latest “Cool Names for Boys” interactive list to go with the strong first name. Wyatt adds the image of “pistol-packin” sheriff Wyatt Earp to a given name that sports an macho “x” right smack dab in the middle.

When I wrote a post about the name (Camden) that Cavallari and Cutler picked for their first son, back in 2012, I published some of her baby naming advice—which she offered at the time. Her number one tip had to do with picking a name that sounds good when you put the first, middle and last names all together. How do you think Jaxon Wyatt Cutler sounds? Sounds pretty good to me. But a three-syllable middle name (like Jaxon Remington Cutler) would have given it a more interesting and impressive sound, in my opinion. Use the link above to check out Cavallari’s other baby-naming tips.

I want to thank Mark Konkol of WDNA Talk Radio in Chicago for tipping me off to this story. This is the article he sent me to call my attention to Jaxon Wyatt Cutler and get my top-of mind comments by phone.




“Why Do the Rich and Famous Give Their Children Such Ridiculous Names?” –Peaches Geldof

I want to thank David Kates for calling my attention to a quote from the late Peaches Geldof in a column she wrote discussing Apple, the name Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin selected for their daughter about ten years ago:

“Why do the rich and famous give their children such ridiculous names? Mine has haunted me all my life, and will continue to do so. I am named, as you may have noticed, after a fruit. I’m not Jane or Sarah or Samantha: I am Peaches.”

I’m always amazed to read celebrity birth announcements in People, Us and other entertainment (gossip) columns and blogs and like Nameberry which treat ridiculous baby names as though they are cute, charming or fashionable and portray the A-list celebrities who give ridiculous names to their children as brilliant trend-setters and visionaries.

I read David Kate’s “Dad-in-Training column all the way through and couldn’t figure out what his point of view was about baby-naming except that he seemed to think that picking a name was an important decision for parents to make. Now there’s a novel idea!

P.S. Just read a news item about Peaches Geldof which informed me that forensic investigators have turned up evidence that her recent death might have been caused by a heroin overdose. Sad, isn’t it?

Drew Barrymore Goes Against the Grain by Naming Her 2nd Daughter, Frankie

At a time when the top-ten girls’ names are packed with glamorous, female movie-star names (like Sophia, Ava and Olivia) that end in the letter “a,” movie star Drew Barrymore and hubby Will Kopelman are naming their baby daughter Frankie. Although Frankie isn’t a major “movie-star name” the name was made famous by singers Frankie Avalon and Frankie Goes to Hollywood (a British boy-and-girl band from the 80s). I should probably also  mention that Frank Sinatra’s “rat pack” called him Frankie, which is no small thing.

Frankie is a familiar form of Frank and similar in style to Billie (a name made famous by sultry blues singer Billie Holiday and tennis star Billie Jean King) Jackie (a name made famous by action/adventure movie star, Jackie Chan; “the Great One,” TV’s Jackie Gleason; and the Brooklyn Dodgers’ incomparable Jackie Robinson. As you can see, Frankie is a name that can be used for any gender.

Giving girls “strong” names that end in the letter “a” is a very well-entrenched trend. So don’t believe Nameberry if they tell you that Frankie Barrymore Kopleman proves that unisex names are now “in.” What it proves is that Drew Barrymore likes to go against the grain. Consider the fact that she named her first daughter Olive rather than top-ten name Olivia.


Does a Baby’s Name Affect Its Chances in Life? (Part 1)

I just read a long article by William Kremer of BBC News about a fascinating topic: Does a baby’s name affect its chances in life?

I’m going to make this quick and easy for you. The first part of the article discusses Dalton Conley, a sociologist who named his daughter E and invited her to pick any “E”-name she wanted. Her name wound up being E Harper Nora Conley. Conley also gave his son free reign and his son picked the name Yo Xing Heyno Augustus Eisner Alexander Weiser Knuckles Conley. This experience motivated Dalton Conley to find oout how a baby’s name affects the child’s chances in life. Here’s Conley’s conclusion, according Kremer:

Conley, who is a sociologist at New York University, says that children with unusual names may learn impulse control because they may be teased or get used to people asking about their names. “They actually benefit from that experience by learning to control their emotions or their impulses, which is of course a great skill for success.”

But for the main part, he says, the effect of a name on its bearer rarely amounts to more than the effect of being raised by parents who would choose such a name.

Think about that last sentence. The child’s chances in life are affected more by the parents (who pick the child’s name) than by the name itself. And you can tell some things about parents by the name they picked.

-In the case of the Conley kids, the fact that they had parents who let them pick their own names was a key fact.

-In the case of North West, the fact that she had a dad who came up with a jokey name while conversing with comedian Jay Leno on the “Tonight Show” and then stuck with that name despite negative feedback from the media and from his own fans.

-In the case of Frank and Adelaide Gail Zappa, the fact that they came up with four highly controversial and widely disliked names including:
*Ahmet Emmuukah Rodan
*Diva Thin Muffin Pigeen
*Moon Unit

Apparently, the names parents choose for their children speaks volumes about them.




By William Kremer

BBC World Service


Mike Myers’ Baby Daughter Was Born on Friday, So He Named Her Sunday Molly.

I’m not the best-informed guy when it comes to Hollywood gossip. Truth is, I haven’t seen a photo of Mike Meyers since he was cracking me up in “Wayne’s World” and then he starred as Austin Powers, back in the 90s. So I wasn’t prepared to read about him having a second baby. But even though his L.A. Times headshot isn’t particularly goofy, he made me smile again when he and wife Kelly named the baby daughter born on Friday, Sunday Molly.

I was surprised that Nardine Saad of the L.A. Time’s “Ministry of Gossip” didn’t get the scoop on how Mike and Kelly came up with the name. I suspect Myer’s daughter may wind up being called Molly. But if her name puts a smile on the faces of people she meets, it’ll work out just fine for her.







Isaac (Hanson Brothers) Hanson Announces the Birth of a Baby Girl with Two Musical Names: Nina Odette

Sometimes those short birth announcement stories in PEOPLE provide an interesting slant on celebrity baby names. I read the news–that Isaac Hanson and wife Nikki had given birth to their first daughter, Nina Odette quickly. I slowed down when I got to the part about Nina’s older brothers: Clarke Everett (who will turn 7 next month) and James Monroe (5 ½). Here’s what caught my attention: when Hanson said, “I know that Everett and Monroe are excited about being big brothers.”

Now you’re probably wondering: What’s the big deal about Everett and Monroe? Did you notice that Hanson referred to both of his boys by their middle names, not their first names? Consider this:

-Their baby girl’s middle name, Odette, may be more important than Nina in the Hanson household.

-I flip out when some celebs (like Thandie Newton) give their children middle names (like Jomba) that are unfamiliar and may not provide a solid fall-back or safety option for an unusual first name (like Booker).

Nina is a cute name that has many sources and many meanings. It’s a familiar form of Hannah, which means “gracious;” It’s a Spanish name that means “girl;” and it’s a Native American name that means “mighty.” But what Nina has going for it is Nina Simone: a brilliant and unique jazz, blues and folk singer and songwriter who was a major figure in the civil rights movement of the 50s and 60s.

Odette gives Nina another strong name to use as needed. It’s a German and French form of Odelia: a Greek name that means “melodic”; a Hebrew name that means “I will praise God”; and a French name that means “wealthy.” Odette makes up for the informality of Nina. But what I like best about the name is that it gives Nina a middle name that comes with a strong musical pedigree, too: Odetta, a folksinger from the 50s and 60s had a voice so beautiful and compelling Martin Luther King called her “the queen of American folk music.”

With two names known both for music and a strong interest in civil rights, Nina Odette has a promising future, indeed.