From an Us Weekly interview with Oprah BFF Gayle King:
I changed my name from Gail to Gayle in seventh grade because I liked to make a loopy Y.
From a STFU Parents post about Increasingly Yoonique Names:
I’m anticipating future pushback from readers who, over time, have come to accept and welcome names like ‘Brayden’ and ‘Kaidence’ into their lives. But until that fateful day arrives, I’m sticking to my belief that yoonique names are usually more effective at confusing teachers and government workers than they are at ensuring greatness and instilling confidence in kids.
From the book “A Herman Melville Encyclopedia” by Robert L. Gale:
Melville in a letter to Evert Duyckinck says that he and his wife will probably name their new-born son Stanwix because “this lad’s great grandfather spent his summers [at Fort Stanwix] in the Revolutionary War before Saratoga came into being–I mean Saratoga Springs & Pavilions” (7 November 1851).
(Melville’s baby boy did indeed end up with the name Stanwix. Stanwix’s great-grandfather was Peter Gansevoort, and his siblings were Malcolm, Elizabeth and Frances.)
From Anna Powell-Smith’s post on Baby names in England and Wales:
Celebrity names may also give an insight into public opinion: I enjoyed comparing trends for Jude and Sienna, especially what happens when Jude is exposed as a CHEATING LOVE RAT in 2005 — the popularity of his name dips sharply, but hers continues to rise.
From a Waltzing More Than Matilda post about our (newly named) galactic supercluster, Laniakea:
The name Laniakea was suggested by Nawa’a Napoleon, associate professor of Hawaiian Language at Kapiolani Community College. The Hawaiian name can be translated in a number of ways, including “open skies”, “wide sky”, or “wide horizons”, but in this case it is understood as “immeasurable heavens”. The name was chosen to honour Polynesian navigators who studied the heavens in order to navigate the Pacific Ocean.
From Paul Schmidtberger’s City Room Blog post about misspelled baby names:
I have a major gripe with the trend of misspelling baby names. On purpose. The parents’ logic runs something like this: “My child is special and unique. Thus, my child deserves a special, uniquely spelled name.”
All across America, parents are mangling names in a misguided mission to trumpet their kid’s individuality. Take the wildly popular name Chase, which is actually not a name at all, but something a dog does to its tail. It was annoying to begin with, but now it gets worse as it slowly mutates from Chase to Chace, and on to Chayce.
Misspelling a child’s name won’t make Junior special, creative or unique. Y’s and I’s are not interchangeable, and apostrophes are not some sort of newfangled confetti to be sprinkled liberally throughout groups of letters. Parents shouldn’t impose cryptic, incoherent or foolish spellings on their own children, nor on society as a whole. And they shouldn’t condemn their children to a lifetime of bleakly repeating that, no, the name in question is spelled “Shaiyahne,” not “Cheyenne.” (And while I’m at it, don’t name your child Cheyenne, either.)