BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse is currently hosting a “Be the First to Name Your Baby Quinoa” contest. The first person to name their baby Quinoa between June 22 and September 7 this year will win $10,000 worth of food from the company.
Will anyone take the bait?
My guess on this one is “no.” Mainly because the name Quinoa is just too unusual. But also because — judging by the apparent failure of Domino’s Pizza “Dot/Dorothy” and “Brooklyn” promotions — expectant parents seem to need more of an incentive than “free food” when it comes to contests like these. (Which is a good thing.)
Do you think we’ll be seeing any babies named Quinoa thanks to this contest?
The list was created by amateur genealogist G. M. Atwater as a resource for writers. It contains names and name combinations that were commonly seen in the U.S. from the 1840s to the 1890s. Below is the full list (with a few minor changes).
Victorian Era Female Names
Victorian Era Male Names
Abigale / Abby
Almira / Almyra
Ann / Annie
Dorothy / Dot
Elizabeth / Eliza / Liza / Lizzy / Bess / Bessie / Beth / Betsy
California mom-to-be Natasha Hill — the woman who was supposed to be getting $5,000 for allowing strangers to name her unborn baby via the site Belly Ballot — isn’t really pregnant. She isn’t even really named “Natasha Hill.”
Her name is Natasha Lloyd, and she’s an actress who was hired by the website’s founder to help drum up publicity.
Yep — the whole thing was a hoax. The folks at Today.com were the ones to figure it out:
When TODAY Moms first reported on the contest, some readers were incredulous; they couldn’t believe a real mom would do such a thing. Now it appears they were right.
Except…they weren’t. Several “real moms” (and dads) have indeed done such a thing. Here are all the for-profit baby names (and attempts) I know of:
*I never blogged about these three, so here are the details:
In 2001, Jason Black and Frances Schroeder of New York tried to auction off the name of the their third child (first son) via Yahoo and eBay. They were aiming for a corporate sponsor, so the bidding started at $500,000. No one bid. They ended up naming the baby Zane Black.
In 2002, Bob and Tracy Armstrong from Florida tried to auction off the name of their baby (gender unknown) via eBay. After eBay pulled the auction for the third time, they decided not to try again.
In 2002, Heather and Steve Johnston of Washington state tried to auction off the name of their baby boy via eBay. The bidding started at $250,000. I found no follow-up stories, so I imagine the auction was either pulled or unsuccessful.
Video games on one end, $15,000 on the other…such wildly different values placed on baby names. Kinda fascinating, isn’t it?
The male names below appeared in the Open Domesday database just once, except where noted. (For the record, I overlooked entries in which one person’s name was used to refer to another person, e.g., “Aelfric’s uncle.”)
The most-mentioned name within each letter group is in bold.
If you make it all the way to the bottom, your reward is a top ten list. :)
Which male were mentioned most often in the Domesday book? The #1 name was William, followed by Robert and Ralph:
1. William (166) 2. Robert (127) 3. Ralph (124) 4. Aelfric (88) 5. Alwin (76) 5. Hugh (76) 7. Roger (73) 8. Godwin (72) 9. Walter (64) 10. Godric (59)
Though the names in the book aren’t necessarily representative of name usage in England overall, it does make sense than William took the top spot. The Domesday Book was created a couple of decades after the Norman Invasion, at a time when the name William was very fashionable, thanks to William the Conqueror.
For instance, admission to the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston is free to anyone named Isabella. (That is, anyone named Isabella who remembered to apply for her museum card ahead of time.)
Domino’s Pizza gave free food to families with babies named Brooklyn to promote the BRKLYN pizza in early 2008. In 2004, the company did the same thing for families with babies named Dorothy/Dot to promote Domino’s Dots.