WHAT’S in a name?Does your name say anything about you as a person? And is an unusual moniker a help or hindrance in life?
These days it seems more and more parents are following the lead of celebrities and choosing to call their children names that are out of the ordinary.
But there’s a difference between a strong, individual name and the downright ridiculous.
A name that sounds like your parents dreamed it up after a night on the vodka is never going to be a good start in life.
When Victoria and David Beckham announced the birth of their baby daughter this week we all knew she wasn’t going to be named Jane or Sue.
But Harper Seven didn’t even seem that strange compared to the raft of foolish baby names you hear in everyday life these days.
Some celebrity baby names are verging on child abuse, in my opinion.
Take Nicolas Cage and Alice Kim for example. They named their child Kal-EL after Superman’s birth name.
While Jamie Oliver’s youngest child, Buddy Bear, joins siblings Poppy Honey, Daisy Boo and Petal Blossom Rainbow.
Then there’s Bob Geldof and Paula Yates’ children Fifi Trixibelle, Peaches Honeyblossom and Little Pixie Geldof. The list goes on.
In fact, a child’s name actually says a lot more about the parents – and their egos – than it does about the child that’s saddled with it.
Of course, there’s an argument that in some cases having such a preposterous name could be a good thing for a child’s strength of character while growing up. They have to get used to sticking up for themselves or get bullied.
And some would see it as a better alternative than being one of four in class with the same, dreary, common name.
But isn’t school the one place where kids just want to fit in?
At school it even matters what letter your name begins with – because whether you’re an Adams or a Zuckerberg you’re always only ever going to end up first or last in line.
It’s even worse if your initials spell out something positively hilarious to a group of snotty pre-pubescents.
Your parents could have named you something as innocent and traditional as Paul Ian Gardner which is swiftly turned into PIG.
Apart from unfortunate instances like this, it’s always a good thing to have a middle name on stand-by.
A lot of people hate theirs – it’s often an ancient name after a distant relative that’s passed down in the family.
But remember, it’s always handy to have as a back-up plan just in case your name becomes associated with a serial killer/ Z-list celebrity/ world dictator at any point.
It seems many more of us are becoming dissatisfied with our birth names whether they be too bland or too absurd.
In fact, it’s a growing trend among adults to change their names and you can switch your name for as little as £13 at the Legal Deed Poll Service.
Figures show that record numbers of people are choosing to change their name by deed poll.
Last year around 90,000 people bought a new identity – a rise of 80% on the previous year.
Names included Willy Wonka, Miss Jelly St Tots and Mr Her Majesty the Queen.
If everyone chose a zany, memorable, moniker it would make life so much easier for those of us who are constantly finding ourselves in awkward situations after forgetting someone’s name.