I Didn't Use a Consultant to Name this Blog. Maybe I Should Have!

nametagI was skimming through the September issue of Chicago Magazine when I came across a short column mentioning a new online service created by 2 local ladies called Future Perfect.  I began to speculate on what business Future Perfect was in. Was it a think tank for envisioning an ideal new society? Could it be an educational service aimed at creating forward-thinking scientists? Or perhaps a group of English teachers campaigning for a grammatical tense I will never have used properly?

No, my friends, it is not any of those. First Perfect is an online company offering a variety of services priced from $100 to $250 and more, helping expecting parents to name their baby. That's right, naming a child is now so difficult, so perplexing, so culturally, ethnically and gender-fluidly treacherous that a service is required to hit all the sweet spots and avoid making a massive mess of it. In one way it makes sense. If you can order all the baby's new furniture, the whole layette, and all the necessary paraphernalia online, why not get your baby's name that way too?

It's a brave new world. How did your parents pick your name? Many of you have names that reflect your ancestry. You might have a biblical name. There are generations named after movie stars and Presidents. My name is an outlier--chosen because my mother liked the name of a kid in my sister's kindergarten class. As parents, we used many of those same metrics to name our own children. It wasn't always easy, sometimes it took a few days, but we managed. And we never once thought of calling in a naming service!

I know today's young generation is busy, working two jobs plus a side hustle in their free time. And I know the importance of choosing the correct name. After all, I was a true misanthrope as a solo Lester, until I met three more in my medical school class. But parents, YOU CAN DO THIS! You can feel that baby moving inside you, or see their face on the ultrasound, or consider their genomic makeup, or stare at their lovely face after birth, have that inspiration, and CHOOSE A NAME FOR YOUR KID!

And just remember new parents, at some time or other in their lives, your kid will tell you they hate their name. It is either too plain or too fanciful; too common or too unique. That's just the way things are.

You don't need a consultant to tell you that!
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