Friday, January 24, 2014

Thinking of names

Oddly enough, "puppy" has become a daily ingredient of my conversations. People ask what I'm going to name her. I researched female artists, writers, and scientists. It's an unfair world, in which you can find loads of famous male names that will suit dogs--Matisse, Monet, Puccini, Yeats, Keats, Jeeves--but few female.
My son researched female pirates and came up with names like Elise Eskilsdotter and P'en Ch'ih Ch'iko', not to mention Sadie the Goat and Charlotte Badger. Interestingly, Sadie was named The Goat due to her habit of head-butting her victims, making hers an appropriate name for Airedales who are known to have inch-thick skulls and ramming crests.

I looked for something distinctive, yet appropriate, and without too many syllables. I imagined myself yelling, "CallioPEE" (Greek muse of epic poetry) out the back door. Perhaps too pretentious. By the way, I read that Calliope (cal-i-o-pee) is the daughter of Mnemosyne (nem-ah-sen-ee, I think), a name that makes Calliope look simple.

Or we can go with a major Canadian artist, Emily Carr, who happened to live in the Pacific Northwest. You have not seen a tree until you've seen one of her paintings.

There's Georgia, of course, for Georgia O'Keeffe, appropriate because the sire is George. Mom is Gypsy.

Or the French author Collette, whose worked in music halls before becoming a popular author. Her best-known work is Gigi, which was made into a Broadway musical and a movie. I'm not particularly interested in her writing, but her name and slightly scandalous character could work.

Other than Harper Lee, Flannery O'Connor and Zora Neal Hurston, I couldn't think of other female writers with distinctive names.  All three were born in the southern USA.

I have a hunch that Emily might stick. It has tradition. My first Airedale, the breed my late husband and I chose because it was one on which we both agreed, was named Emma. The name was less popular in those days but well-known among English majors. Jane Austen's Emma is a character who is deeply loved.

My brain hurts.

This is post #555.


  1. HOLY COW PATTIES!!!! How in the worlds did I miss this???!!! I knows with all our intermutt troubles and well, me havin' that nasty colitis thingie the last three weeks, things have been 'off' lately, butts how did I miss THIS??!
    This is indeed excitin' news!!! WooooooHoooooo!! OMD, a new AirePup!!! Wows, well there is just so much to do, and tons of widdle pads to buy, and bandaids and ear plugs, and paper towels....whew,, I'm exhausted thinkin' abouts it!! BOL
    Well, as far as names goes, I likes Emily. Ma's Angel Airedale was Annie, so I likes that one too, butts I thinks Emily is FABulous!
    I can't wait to see more of this little ball of furs!! Oh, and Miro, I thinks you should rest up now dude....just sayin'...
    Ruby ♥
    pees: congrats on your 555th postie! WooHoo!

    1. I, in turn, didn't know about the colitis, Ruby. Hope you are all better now.

  2. Emily is a beautiful name! We are counting the days until she comes home to you and your mom, Miro!

    Love ya lots♥
    Mitch and Molly

  3. I would vote for "Zora," even though I've read none of the eponym's writings. You may want to reconsider the use of "Emily" in view of its recently-expired trendiness: see the graph of its frequency (among human beings) on the Baby Name Wizard. (By contrast, you were ahead of the trend with the name "Emma.")

    1. Miles, thanks for the useful links. The name "Emily" certainly did experience an astounding rise. Your reply sent me on a search for the most common dog names. Stanley Coren (U of B.C.) published a list of 50, which doesn't include Zora or Emily. The work continues.

    2. I have just had a second thought about the name "Zora": some people of our generation might associate it with Zorro rather than with any writer. . . .