[H]ave a list of names that you’d never in a million years consider for your precious new baby. Names like Bathsheba, Osgood, Thurston, etc. When someone asks, you can throw that name out and watch their reactions.
During my pregnancy, my patients and friends couldn’t help themselves, there was so much unsolicited advice, comments and suggestions, that finally I announced that we were naming the baby, Sparky. It was plausible enough to stop their comments, and since that wasn’t my real pick, I had no emotional reaction to the range of shocked and un-diplomatic responses.
It worked for me.
I think this is a great idea–especially if your favorite baby names are unusual. A wacky cover name like Bathsheba or Sparky will not only throw people off, but desensitize them so that when you reveal your actual choice (Ptolemy or Alpacino or something) no one is too shocked.
If your favorite names are ordinary, though, I think you should stick with a cover name that’s similar in terms of style and tone. For instance, anything out of the current top ten should suffice.
What do you think?
And, have you ever used (or do you one day plan to use) a cover name?