Stuck for a name no more!

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Stuck for a name no more!

Postby arclight » February 16th, 2006, 10:04 am

Rummaging through my voluminous mail bucket this morning, I found a link to the US Census list of common last and first (male and female) names at http://www.census.gov/genealogy/names/names_files.html

I know I tend to name kids "Timmy" (TIMOTHY 0.640%, TIM 0.104%, TIMMY 0.019% =~ 0.763% of the male population) and there's a lot of "Sally" going on out there (SALLY 0.135%, SALLIE 0.024%, SALLEY 0.001% =~ 0.160%)

"Bobby" also shows up a lot, but it's more justifiable (ROBERT 3.143%, BOBBY 0.223%, ROBERTO 0.097%, BOB 0.055%, ROBBIE 0.016%, ROB 0.013%, BOBBIE 0.010%, ROBBY 0.008%, ROBT 0.005% =~ 3.570%) I was surprised that "Janice" was more popular than I thought. "Smedley" and "Snidely" don't even make the list of first names, though there are about 2.5 times as many "Sherman"s than "Adolph"s.

Anyway, if you find yourself repeating the same names over again and you want a little inspiration, take a look at the files and see what strikes you. And if you're looking for a dead-giveaway generic alias, take one each of the top ten first and last names ("My name is James ... Smith, human. I am normal.")

Note also that "Boris" is only slightly less popular than "Kareem," though I wouldn't read too much into that. :)
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Postby Wesley » February 16th, 2006, 10:44 am

Were you spying on our rehearsal? I made a vow just last night to stop calling kids "little Timmy." Lasted all of 15, maybe 16, minutes.
But from now on, every last one of the little bastards will be a Donald.
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Postby kbadr » February 16th, 2006, 10:44 am

Yay! I'm marginally more popular than an imaginary torturer!

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Postby Mo Daviau » February 16th, 2006, 12:51 pm

I'm trying to make a point to use the extremely modern baby names of today. Sally and Timmy were born in the 1940s, but today's babies have names like:

"Tiffany/Brittany/Ashley/Nevaeh/Taylor/Savannah/Emma, sweetie, get mommy another Xanax!"
"Dakota/Hunter/Bradley/Kareem/Chase/Zach/Lance/Luke, the Grand Marnier is only for grownups..."

Simple, plain Anglo-American names like Timmy/Tommy/Johnny and Mary/Sally/Ann really don't get much play among people having babies nowadays. There is a shift towards surnames and names that sound more regal than plain, plus the usual Biblical or manly standards among boys.

I still assert that Lance Armstrong would not be as revered and famous as he is if he were named John Smith or Melvin Weiner.
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Postby kbadr » February 16th, 2006, 1:05 pm

This site's pretty interesting. Trends in baby names are almost creepy. I now understand why every class I was in had 27 Jennifers in it.

http://babynamewizard.com/namevoyager/lnv0105.html

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Postby nadine » February 16th, 2006, 1:17 pm

Waaaah.

I thought my name was more unique then that here. out of 415 out of 4275??

nadine.
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Postby Evilpandabear » February 16th, 2006, 1:46 pm

haha, we peaked in the 60's but now jay's are at an all time low!
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Postby Wesley » February 16th, 2006, 2:23 pm

I was riding a wave when I was named, 121 in the 1970's. Although names starting with "W" in general are in a nosedive! Could be worse, though, I could be a Myron. Those poor bastards have all but died out. Or a Mort--no wonder no one has any Uncle Morts anymore. This also explains why I work with so many Peters between the age of 40 and 60.

That's it, I'm doing away with this notion that characters need names at all. I will either call everyone I'm in a scene with by a petname ("snickerdoodle," most likely, but perhaps "lollipop" or "mon petit singe") or an assigned number ("Number 4726, get in here!")

Problem solved.
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Postby phlounderphil » February 16th, 2006, 5:07 pm

Woo! my name peaked 45 years before I was even born.

ah, Philip, a good old chap from the olden days.
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Postby Roy Janik » February 16th, 2006, 5:16 pm

phlounderphil wrote:Woo! my name peaked 45 years before I was even born.


Man, that ain't nuthin'. 'Roy' peaked in the 1890s, and has been rapidly descending ever since.
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Postby sara farr » February 17th, 2006, 12:55 pm

SARAH 0.508 18.469 23


How did you find the era where your name peaked?
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Postby valetoile » February 17th, 2006, 8:15 pm

just type in your name, and it will show you the graph for it.
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Postby mdalonzo » February 28th, 2006, 4:54 pm

Oddly, my name was number 1 in the 60's, 70's, 80's, and 90's...but my wife's name has never been in the top 1000 ever in any decade. Which makes us mediocre by averaging the popularity of names (a popular mathmatical formula, am I right, Andrea?)
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