What’s It Like to Be Named Baxter?

Nancy Friedman of Fritinancy recently sent me a link to The Name, an essay in which sportswriter Baxter Holmes explains what it’s like to be a Baxter.

Names are identifiers, but since they shadow our lives, we never give them much thought, just like we never think about how we walk or what we sound like breathing. I grew up in a small town in rural Oklahoma, where everyone knew everyone. Baxter was just what I was–nothing special.

So when asked to describe the essence of “Baxter,” I thought, When someone shouts it in a crowd, it’s my attention they’re trying for.

How did Baxter’s mother come up with his name?

When waddling around with me in her belly, she saw “Baxter” autographed on the cast of a friend of a friend’s broken arm. It was just what she was looking for, something distinct and distinguished. “I knew the minute I said it in my mind,” she says. “I loved the way it sounded.”

See the rest of Bax’s essay in this month’s LA Time Magazine.


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