Posts Tagged With: Storm

Tuesday Conundrum: New Data, New Gender

It’s my name!

A few weeks ago now I set out a little weekend conundrum, giving you 14 names and asking you to all correctly identify which 7 ranked higher for girls, and vice versa.

These were the answers:

Ranked Higher For Boys

Ashley, Brook, Harper, Laurie, Mackenzie, Morgan & Tristyn

Ranked Higher For Girls

Beaux, Bobbi, London, Lou, Reese, Skyler & Storm

Since the release of the 2011 data, there are three names which have altered slightly; one name no longer ranks for either, whilst two others have since swapped to the other gender, care to guess which three names you think they are?

I do recommend reading through the linked post for guidance if you feel a little uncertain, as that may help narrow down the options when you take a peek at the rankings.

Categories: Friday Conundrum | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Friday Conundrum Answers

Wrong type of celebratory card, but you get the idea

We’re back, with the much-awaited answers to Friday’s fun little conundrum.

Truth be told, I was a little cheeky when it came to choosing the names to feature in the Friday conundrum, so for me it came as no surprise that the same names were consistently being wrongly identified as the other gender. However, now you shall know the truth.

The names which ranked higher for boys:

Ashley, #178 compared to #516 for girls

It’s understandable if you got this wrong, a recent Nameberry blog post did say:

at this point, do leave Ashley to the girls

Well, not us Brits, clearly. I don’t suppose anyone is watching the Euros? We have two Ashleys in our current England squad, Ashley Young and Ashley Cole. The former was born in 1985, the year Ashley ranked at #2 in the States and in 1984 the name ranked at #49 for boys in England&Wales.

Brook, #1109 compared to #1389 for girls

This is despite the fact that Brooke ranks inside the Top 100, at #45, so this one was a surprise for me. But obviously, not for some of you since a couple of you called right on this one.

Harper, #897 compared to #930 for girls

This name was a case of testing to see whether you’ve all been listening, and clearly you haven’t since everyone got this wrong. This name is also the reason I carefully worded my definition of ‘most popular’ to highest ranking, because truth be told more baby girls were named Harper in 2010, but the name ranked higher for boys. Crafty wording on my behalf? Perhaps.

Laurie, #1109 compared to #1815 for girls

Spelled Lori, this name only ranks for girls (at #2392), but this spelling is more popular for boys. I do know lads named just Laurie, my age and indeed younger.

Mackenzie, #239 compared to #1332 for girls

The interesting thing to not here is that the name is climbing for boys, and falling for girls. The alternate spelling of McKenzie ranks even higher for boys at #153.

Morgan, #106 compared to #229 for girls

My goddaughter, whom we’ve previously mentioned, was going to be named Morgan should she have been a boy. I will hand it to anyone who thought this ranked higher for girls, Morgan ranked inside the Top 100 for girls back in the early noughties – peaking at #59 in 2000, however the male ranking still eclipsed the female one at #52 in 2000. Both have clearly dropped since then, but more so on the female popularity list.

Tristyn, #3332 compared to not ranking at all for girls

I wondered whether the spelling-with-a-y would trip some up, and it looks like it did. I know, this was another mean-spirited selection and perhaps you all would’ve opted for the blue side if it had been spelled Tristan.

What it does demonstrate is that -yn isn’t necessarily a feminine ending, and indeed in Wales many male names are spelled with a y, i.e. Gwyn is a male name, Gwen is a female name.

As it so happens, another variant Trystan only ranks for lads too, and the highest ranking version of the name is Tristan at #121. Possible Top 100 aspirations? With all the variants to consider, it’s very much a possibility.

The names which ranked higher for girls:

Beaux, #2843 compared to not ranking at all for boys

Clearly, if you have a working knowledge of French grammar, your inclination would be that this name ranked higher for boys, as beaux is the masculine plural form of beau, a French word meaning beautiful. This was a slightly mean pick on my behalf, especially as late last year there was a Brit celeb-baby boy born named Beaux.

Bobbi, #1093 compared to #1801 for boys

I wondered whether those whom know that Bobby ranks at #83 for the boys would be inclined to believe this ranks more highly for a boy, but that sadly isn’t the case. I do wonder, however, whether people were swayed by Ms. Bobbi Kristina Brown, daughter of Whitney Houston, as I presume more know about her than the fact that Bobby is in the England&Wales Top 100.

London, #2392 compared to #2941 for boys

There have been two examples of celeb-babies of both genders being given the name London in recent times: in September 2011, Jay McGraw welcomed a son named London Phillip; at the end of May 2012 Brooke White welcomed daughter London Ray.

Lou, #4012 compared to not ranking at all for boys

Woo! How could I resist not including my name? This is in line with European trends for Lou as a female name.

Reese, #1180 compared to #1241 for boys

The names Rhys (#65) and Reece (#84) both rank not only higher for boys, but both are inside the Top 100. Then we have the Reese Witherspoon spelling which is slightly ahead for girls.

Skyler, #1731 compared to #2400 for boys

This is the flipside to the States, where Skyler ranks higher for boys at #287 compared to #456 for girls.

Storm, #1093 compared to #1801 for boys

No one got this right either, and I can see why, the name Storm could be seen as akin to the name Bear – which is seen almost exclusively as a boy name, amongst the emerging crop of boys names with an almost wild & rugged edge to them. But alas, this is not the case.

Categories: Friday Conundrum, Popularity | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Friday Conundrum: Unisex Names

I despair

Unisex names are on the rise, and I’ve been on the receiving end of the issue myself.

Picture the scene:

There I was, innocently helping Santa give out presents to young children, and lo and behold a child with long blonde hair stepped forward, and told Santa that their name was Sam. It was by pure chance that Sam got the right gender present because I was at a loss. Yes, Sam is technically boys name, but it’s also a popular short form of Samantha, a girls name. Then along came another girl with shoulder length brown hair and the name Jimmy. I almost threw my hands up in despair.

Thus, I challenge you to my Friday conundrum, listed below are 14 names: 7 ranked higher for the girls in 2010 in England&Wales; and vice versa for the other 7. Can you guess correctly?

1. Ashley

2. Beaux

3. Bobbi

4. Brook

5. Harper

6. Laurie

7. London

8. Lou

9. Mackenzie

10. Morgan

11. Reese

12. Skyler

13. Storm

14. Tristyn

I’ll be honest, some surprised me when researching this post, and ye who cheat make bunnies cry.

Categories: Popular Names, Popularity, Unisex Names | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Sibset of the Week: The Nuyens

Nick Nuyens, from futurecdn.net

Names from our Belgian and Dutch friends featured heavily on last week’s list of surprising names given by celeb parents. It seems high time, therefore, that we talk about a family from one of those countries.

Since the Olympics have been in the news all day, we’ve going to talk about a cycling couple from Belgian. Both Nick and wife Evy are professional cyclists, specialising in road tracks. Together they’ve welcomed three sons:

Sterre

Storm

Sting

Can’t help but wonder where they plan to go from here, should they have additional children. It is very much a closed, themed set of word names starting with St-, since Sterre means star in Dutch. My first thought is Story, used as a middle name by Minnie Driver in 2008. Further along the path are Steel, Stable, Stitch, Stone, Stream and Strum.

Food for thought? What about if they have a daughter?

Categories: Weekend Post | Tags: , , | 4 Comments

Weekend Post: Names of Questionable Gender

Dara Ó Briain, from telegraph.co.uk

When an aquaintance recently announced her new daughter’s name as Freya, she was showered with compliments. Little did they know, baby Freya was very nearly a Zephyr nn Zephy: It’s the 21st Century Stephanie, she said. I love the name Zephyr, for me, he’s a 21st Century Geoffrey, but the idea of it on a pink bundle of joy has been growing on me all week, so it makes sense to talk about it now, since the recent report on the genderless baby named Storm got me thinking about a name I’ve always classified as male having potential as a female name.

Then there’s the flipside of the coin. Until I was introduced to AFI back in ’03, Jade was a girls name for me, but AFI’s guitarist is very much male, despite being called Jade. The French still use Camille for males, there’s a strapping young french swimmer named Camille LeCourt. Rowan Atkinson is one of my comedy heros, mostly for Blackadder, and his name is still used equally for lads and ladettes. I also can’t get enough of Dara Ó Briain’s stand up DVD, his name may be considered female by one side of the pond, but in the Emerald Isle, he’s still male. Despite this, I have a female irish friend named Daragh.

Here’s a couple of other names I’ve been thinking about this week, in terms of this subject:

Asa.

Doctor Who used to have a female companion named Ace, well, it was her nickname, but if the first Ace that comes to mind is female, does that mean the name has potential on the other gender? Well, I’m sure most of you out there first thought Ace Ventura, or another Ace. I’m just your average child of a Doctor Who nut, I don’t know any better.

But, getting to Asa, I’ve yet to see one, but I’ve seen people ask about whether Asa is a he or a she. An argument I keep seeing is, any name ending in a is a girl name. It’s logically, in Italy, most female names end in a: Adriana, Nadia, Isabella, Elisabetta etc. etc. To change Theodore to it’s female version, the e is swapped for an a.

Ash.

Think of the most famous Ashley you know, is it a she or a he? The first one I can think of is Ashley Cole, a premiership footballer, who also plays for England. Embarassingly, the next Ashley on the list is Ashley Tisdale, the disney star. My 8 year-old sister is going through the High School Musical stage, I’m excused.

Growing up, I was best friends for a while in primary school with a male Ashley. He was the goalie, I was the striker. It was a love/hate kind of friendship 😉 Either way, in the USA, the overwhelming number of Ashley’s born in the 90s were female. Ashley cracked the top 10 as a she name, and she currently sits at #27 in the USA . In the UK, on the 2009 list, Ashley was #421 for girls, 15 places below Flora, 2 above Ophelia. In the boys list of the same year, Ashley is #154, 2 above Rowan, 8 below Alfred. Ashton sits at #69, Asher at #427.

Beau.

Beau is our next name, she was 6 places above Ashley at #414 on the UK female list in 2009, and #178 for the boys. Ulrika Johnsson has a daughter named Bo (at #771 in the UK list, ’09), and a Beau Vivienne has made an appearance in the London Telegraph Birth Announcements.

I too have considered Bo for a girl, creating the combination Lili Bo Rika back when I was 10. As for using Beau, it’s a possibility, but I love the name Belle too much. I’ll admit, I’d love to meet a Beau/Belle girl/boy twin set.

Bobbie/Billie.

I recently clocked Bobbie on a list of names for Rockabilly girls, I’ll admit, it has a certain pazazz to it. Whitney Houston has a daughter named Bobbi, and Lenny Henry has a daughter named Billie. There’s also little Billie Beatrice to consider, and Miss Billie Piper, notable for her Doctor Who work and another, slightly saucier role. Billie’s full name is Billie Paul Piper. Double dudeness! Her father is named Paul, and in fairness, she was originally named Liane, until her parents experienced namers remorse, and changed her name to Billie.

Brave.

I’ll admit it, I’ve played with the idea of Brave as a middle before for a boy. However, I’ve seen two mummy bloggers post about Brave: One considered it for a baby boy, one actually has a girl named Brave.

Claude.

Whilst in France last year, I remember watching a daytime quiz show, a female contestant was named Marie-Claude. Now, this name is doubly gender-neutral in France, since Marie has historically been used for males there. As for Claude, that was a bit of a shocker for me.

Cricket.

Only for a short period did I think about this name. I live in England, Cricket is a sport. Heck, I go past one of the most famous Cricket grounds in the world each day: Trent Bridge. My brother plays cricket every Wednesday and Sunday, in his best, if slightly grass-stained at the knees, cricket whites.

It still makes for a cute nickname. I may rename my brother Cricket, although Nameberry lists it as a female name only.

Darcey.

The most famous Darcey is Mr. Darcy, but Nameberry did a post, albeit a little while ago, that placed Darcy, in it’s various spellings, in the most searched names list (for babynames.co.uk users) for both males and females. On the female list: Darcie was at #18, Darcey at #36 (4 below Betty!). On the boy list, Darcy was at #15, 2 above Rowan.

Personally, I’ve always been drawn to the Darcey spelling. and it’s the most popular spelling for girls, in 2009, Darcey charted at #107 for girls (and #3744 for lads), with Darcy just behind at #116, and Darcie at #178. For the boys, Darcy was at #972 (just above Darragh).

Jenson.

I’m a huge Formula 1 fan, and Jenson Button is my favourite driver. Jenson was #143 in 2009 in the UK for the boys, and if Madison and Addison can both become female, could Jenson too? It certainly seems as a natural progression from Jennifer (which was at it’s peak around the time Jenson was born), and it allows me to use one of my favourite nickname: Sunny (currently at #1546 for girls, #923 for boys).

Mika.

I know of two famous Mika’s that are male: the lebanese/american singer and the finnish ex-Formula 1 champion. Still, in Eurovision this year, Ukraine was represented by a female Mika.

In terms of the UK 2009 list, Mika charted at #1105 for girls, and #2318 for boys.

Shiloh.

Mostly used for males until little Miss Pitt-Jolie arrived on the scene in 2006. My line on this is Shiloh was likely to never pick up for girls until someone influencial came along to get things rolling. In this sense, I liken this name to Milo. Same sort of sounds, but one is considered male, the other, not so much. Remarkable, non?

Again, we can find Shiloh on both the girls and boys list: #1008 for lads, #916 for girls. The fact that there isn’t much difference could give hope to those who want Shiloh back as a male name.

Categories: Weekend Post | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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