by Reade Fenner ‘22
When brainstorming baby names, people typically begin with family names, or the names of their favorite movie characters, perhaps. Some parents may consider a “classic” name or stray further from normal names and go with something more unique, yet tasteful. However, as millennial celebrities arrive at the age where they are having children, baby-naming has gone from uncommon to completely bizarre. With names like Stormi (Kylie Jenner and Travis Scott), Lyra Antarctica (Ed Sheeran), Kulture (Cardi B and Offset), North, Saint, and Chicago (Kim Kardashian and Kanye West), celebrities awarding strange names to their children is becoming more and more common. But why? Why name your child in such a ridiculous fashion that it’s almost comical?
Some may claim that, since many of these celebrities are musicians or actors, they’re naturally creative people, which seeps into their child-naming. Their creative energy is just so strong that they must give their child an utterly ludicrous name. Despite this speculation, a celebrity’s artistry cannot be blamed for their naming decisions.
The main reason celebrities name their children strange names is obvious: for publicity. Stars know that they will receive significantly more press if they name their child Bear as opposed to something more common, like Michael. A strange name not only guarantees a celebrity an article in Us Weekly, but generates buzz on social media. Regardless of whether the press praises or berates their decision, weird names garner massive amounts of attention, and for many celebrities, any attention is good attention.
When naming their children, celebrities must also consider the level of spotlight they want on their child. Certain famous people hide their child’s face and name in an effort to provide them with a certain level of anonymity. However, celebrities who give their children odd names typically aspire to do the exact opposite. Being the product of a celebrity makes a child famous enough, but with the addition of a ridiculous name, the child is born a star. Their ludicrous name serves as a launching point for future notoriety, allowing them to possibly build a brand off of their name.
Unfortunately, celebrities often neglect to consider how their child may be impacted by an outlandish name. Such celebrity offspring are stuck with absurd names at least until they turn 18, if not for the rest of their lives. The child is forced to suffer through a lifetime of ridicule, and, if the child cannot accumulate enough fame to base their career on, their name could potentially have a negative effect on their future employment. After all, what executive wants to hire someone named Gravity?