>The name game – an impasse

>Although I’m pretty crappy at coming up with pseudonyms on this blog, I generally like coming up with names and do so as a mental game every now and then. I know I’m not the only one out there, since I have a number friends with long lists of names of imagined broods of children. And some friends and I have an annoying habit of stopping each other in mid-sentence to say, “That would make a great band name!” (Silliest one ever: The Damned Coconuts. Yes, I once uttered that phrase in conversation. Long story.)

Now Bullock is pretty indulgent in this practice of mine. I can say to him, out loud, “Can we name our imaginary first born son Miles?” and he’ll say, “Sure.” He’ll even ask why and how I came up with the name. And he’s even accepted the fact that our imaginary daughter is named Ada, an even more old-fashioned name than Miles.

Perhaps Bullock’s easy-going attitude about this is because these kids are imaginary and likely to stay that way. I can name them any damn thing I want to.

But he’s put his foot down on my choice of name for the dog we will eventually get. And it’s a really cool name!!!

I want to name a dog Havoc. It’s all because while I was at K’zoo I was quoting Julius Caesar for some reason — “Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war!”* — and then I interrupted myself for once and cried, “Ooh! Havoc would make an excellent name for a dog!”

But nooooooo, not so, thinks Bullock. He thinks it sounds like a goth metal band. OK, so it would make a good band name, too. But don’t you think it would be a cool dog name? His/her full name could be Havoc, the Dog of War, and the puns on “wreaking havoc” and “Havoc reeks” would be nearly endless. What’s not to like??

What do you think, oh wisdom of the internets?

*Except, after too much cheap wine at K’zoo, I think I kept misquoting it as “…and let loose the dogs of war” or worse, “…release the dogs of war” (shades of Mr. Burns’ “Release the hounds!” I think).


21 thoughts on “>The name game – an impasse

  1. >”Havoc” is a most excellent name for a dog. I’m beginning to mistrust this Bullock fellow, who says otherwise.(And incidentally, I think that I have that same name obsession. For years my father and brother, whenever an unusual name would come up in conversation, would roll their eyes and say, “OH. THAT’S the kind of name Flavia would name her child!” Which is a strange reaction, given that my parents gave both me and my brother uncommon names, and since my mother’s father gave his kids REALLY uncommon names–my mom’s is Hawaiian.)

  2. >Hey man! “Reeking Havoc” was claimed as my hair-metal band name long ago —- if you want it, it’ll cost ya! Although currently I’m more leaning towards a riot grrrl band called “The Painted Hussies.”- Sisyphus “Mad Dog” T. Cog.

  3. >I love the name Havoc for a dog! You can yell it (an all important feature in a dog name, but hard with some vowel combinations) and it’s unique enough that you won’t have seven dogs come running at the dog park!You would get almost as many points for naming your dog “Crab,” however, maybe as many.

  4. >You know where I stand on this, since “wreaking havoc” is one of my favorite terms to use, especially randomly, as well as one of my favorite activities.Although I have to say, I’m also quite taken with “Cry Waffle and let slip the dogs of war.”Oh, and I’m pretty sure Havoc is a Norwegian death metal band. Goths usually don’t get that aggressive.

  5. >Yay! Everyone is ganging up on Bullock! :)And yes, TR, Bullock is named after Sheriff Bullock on Deadwood, becuase last summer he was sporting facial hair modelled on Bullock (and he’s doing it again this year).

  6. >Havoc would be cool! Mike wants to call our next dog Guisborne or Gizzy for short. We’re all for working in historical or literary allusions in a pet’s name if you can get away with it.

  7. >What I want to know is why those kids are likely to remain “imaginary”! I know I don’t know you for real, but we all know you a bit through your blog, and you would be a wonderful mother!

  8. >SC — Thanks for the vote of confidence. And for the record, I think Bullock would make a great father and co-parent! But the reasons why the kids are likey to remain imaginary has many factors that are too complicated or private to blog about, especially since they involve Bullock as much as me.

  9. >Havoc is an excellent name for a dog. I, however, have a superstitious fear of a creature living up to its name. I met a woman with a Giant Schnauzer (shoulders to my waist and I’m not small) named Beowulf. I said it seemed he was more a Grendel. She agreed, but said she hadn’t wanted to encourage him.

  10. >But what if the saying, Nomen est omen holds true, and you get more imaginary dog than you imaginarily bargained for? My friend’s daughter’s name is Ada, I think it’s a really pretty name. The name Miles, on the other hand, makes me picture this imaginary boy child being born complete with tweed jacket and shoulder patches. Which might not be a bad thing, but might garner stares around the sandbox.

  11. >Anniina — “nomen est omen” is exactly why Bullock is wary of the name Havoc (and as Shade intimates above). Well, and because it sounds like a Norwegian death metal band, as the Pastry Pirate specifies.As for Miles — I always picture an American civil war soldier. Of course, “miles” is Latin for soldier, but I think maybe there was a mini series once about the civil war with a character named Miles. But yes, it’s a very grown-up name, as is Ada. But my imaginary kids can hold their own in the sandbox — they’ll inherit my “look of death” and I’ll get the Pastry Pirate to train them in the art of the “thumbs of death.” Plus, they’ll have Havoc to protect them.

  12. >I think that Havoc is a very clever name for a dog, and it would be fun to talk about “wreaking Havoc” and the rest. But would you want to snuggle up to Havoc, or to talk about how cute Havoc is, or say how much you adore Havoc when he’s curled up like that, etc.? I think Bullock may have a point.I will say, however, that I like both the names Miles and Ada.D. and I enjoy watching the cooking show “Nigella Feasts” because her script often calls for phrases that would be great band names. Our favorite thus far is “Vociferous Tang.”

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