HALLIE EPHRON: True story --
A local nurse read a baby's name off a chart. La-a.
Nurse says to the mother, "That's a nice name. Lah-ah."
Mother says, "It's Ladasha."
Of course, grammarian that I am, I would have wanted to correct her, because of course it should be Lahyphena.
And why not? In this day and age where we had Kei$ha and an artist known as ...
.an ("Periodan" if it's a boy - "Dotan" is it's a girl)
Let's hear it for names that give life to keys that would never otherwise get struck!
This is heady stuff for a girl who grew up hating that she had a name no one else had, yearning to be Carol or Barbara or, please pretty-please, Elizabeth?
Did you love your name, or not so much. If you could have named yourself (I know, I know, some of us have), what would it have been?
HANK PHILLIPI RYAN: MATILDE!!I will laugh for the next five days. More to come.
RHYS BOWEN: Those were terrific, Hallie. I've just been looking at my keyboard and realize we already have Mark and Asterix--and I've just noticed something I didn't realize I had... I have a Euro symbol. How about that? I feel very cosmopolitan.
And I remember mentioning once that Hashtag sounds like a word from Mordor. I think if I were going to be a recording artist I'd call myself *--as in Rising Star.
And I grew up hating my name too. So glad to have become Rhys which sounds serene and friendly.
HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN: We have numbers, too!
Like I could be reporter K8 . (Kate Bracket)
Or a rock singer, / (Slash, right?)
Or at the doctor, have a :oscopy.
My name is Harriet which I hated until last year, now I love it. My father wanted to name me "Harmony" (He was a music critic back then.) Luckily cooler heads prevailed. I always think if I *had* been Harmony, I might still have wound up H&K. (Okay, that'd be HANDK, but I'm all 4 it.)
LUCY BURDETTE: My brains are leaking into my current novel so I'm incapable of coming up with anything too clever--just admiring your stuff, ladies!
I was named Roberta because my father was so desperate to have a son and shocked that it was me instead. (His name was Charles Robert.) There were two other choices, Priscilla (no offense, but thank you god on that one!) and Janet Susan. My mother's name was Janet, my older sister's Susan Janet. They weren't reaching too far, were they?
So I was called Bobbie right up until I went to graduate school and returned to Roberta. I can tell now which era my friends and acquaintances are from.
Did you know there is a Facebook page called "is your name Roberta?" Every member of course is named....Roberta!
But now I'm having so much fun being LUCY!
ROSEMARY HARRIS: I didn't like the name Rosemary very much when I was growing up. No one else had the name except for the gal with the bow on Dick van Dyke (actually she was Rose Marie) and Rosemary Clooney. Not exactly the women you want to be lumped together with when you're 12.
Then there were the clever souls who said "Rosemary..like Rosemary's baby!" Wow. Brilliant.
Older friends call me Rosie or Ro, which I like. Looking around the keyboard I don't see any symbols that would work for me - but I do like the idea of Control. ;-)
DEBORAH CROMBIE: I hated Debbie when I was growing up. My mother swore she didn't name me after Debbie Reynolds, that Deborah was a biblical name. Well, so it may be, but my parents weren't churchgoers, and I never believed her.
For a while in grade school I tried to get people to call me "Denny" --heaven knows why--but it didn't work. It wasn't until I was a published author that I insisted people stop calling me Debbie. I actually like Deborah, and Deb, and best of all Debs, so now don't mind my name. But I cannot think of a single clever way to punctuate it.
(I would have loved to have been called Hallie, or Hank, or Bobbie, or Rhys, or Rosemary, or Julia!)
JULIA SPENCER-FLEMING: I confess, I love being a Julia. I highly recommend it as a name. As for L33T names, I can see P@ (my brother's name) Ma~a, as in the Australian national song, and &rew, nicknamed &y. We could eat <> soup while reading Marx's "ic Materialism and listening to Rosemary Clooney sing , ona my House. I know it's an old song, but I'm su%amental.
This is all taking me back to the summer when our daughter went to overnight camp and when we came to pick her up two weeks later, everyone was saying good-bye to her called her Sam (her middle name is Samantha.) Now I think she doesn't mind her name.
So should punctuation marks join the letters of the alphabet, or remain separate beasts?
Do you love your name or not so much. I know I've grown into mine.