Saturday, July 19, 2014

Name That.

 Oh boy. Cuteness is simply oozing out of my cell phone today.

My daughter in California adopted two new kittens, and she has been texting oodles of pictures of my new grand cats to me.  I am SO NOT READY to be a grandma to actual human beings, but having grandcats is going to be great.  They are just adorable and I can't wait to go visit them, and cuddle them,  AND  I don't have to buy them Christmas presents or worry about them smoking weed in the basement when their parents are at work. Win!

It is also a good chance to practice not overstepping my boundaries in the grandma role. For instance, the debate of what to name the new kitties has been raging over the cell phones and internet all day.  I know I don't get a vote in what names are ultimately chosen, but I do get to make suggestions, right?  And voice my opinion, up until the names stick, right?  So if my daughter's boyfriend wants to name the kittens Taco and Burrito, I can tell him what I really think. Right?  Also, he is French, so there is already a cultural divide between us when it comes to names.  He does not appreciate my taste in any of the perfectly good kitty names I suggest, like Minerva and Matilda, or Violet and Ruby.  If he can't name them after menu items at Del Taco,  he wants to name them both of them Minette, which is a really lovely French cat name, except he already has a cat back in France named Minette.  And everybody in America knows you can't name a pet the name of another currently living pet, let alone name both new cats the same thing!  It is against all the rules!  And yet, I know that in the end,  if they really decide to call those sweet little kitties Taco and Burrito, or Kindle and IPad, which is his second choice,  I will have to live with it.  Now I know how my mom felt when we were actually considering naming one of our kids Cedric. Come to think of it though,  Cedric would be a great cat name.

I should not have started even thinking about naming things. Now my obsession with names is going to be exposed.   I'm not talking about naming just kids or pets or even cars.  My name obsession goes further than even my family knows.  I name everything. Everything. For instance, we got a new fridge last week. Her name is Ruby Dee.  My clothes dryer is named Angelica. The one before that was Stanley. I never named my washer, because he was here when we moved in.  I tend to only name inanimate things if I acquire them new.  Except for cars, which are always used by the time I get around to owning them.  I name all my cars.  My first car was a 1981 Honda Civic named Rudy. My current car is named Golden Goose. And of course I call my cell phone Ruthanne.  She is named after my grandma, whose name was Ruth, but Ruth sounded too short and old fashioned for a cell phone, so I lengthened it to Ruthanne.  I also have been know to name the more epic fights my husband and I have had through the years.  There is the Burrito Fight (which for me is another strike against naming the cat Burrito), the Aspen Battle, and the Bloody Sunday Encounter, just to name a few. It helps me categorize them.

When I was a kid, I read baby name books just for fun.  I made lists and lists of what I was going to name my future children.  I used to get absolutely giddy when I would see Cabbage Patch dolls in the stores. Every single one of those dolls had a birth certificate that you could see through the clear packaging on the front. Those birth certificates had first AND middle names. I could not leave the toy aisle until I had read the names of every single Cabbage Patch doll in the place. When Cabbage Patch dolls made a comeback a few years ago, nothing had changed. I was still obsessed with reading every name, this time with my own well- monnikered  kids now waiting patiently for me to finish.

And now, Coke has joined the party.  Have you seen those wretched Coke bottles in the stores? They have names on them now.  More specifically, the bottle instructs you to share a coke with so and so, and every bottle has a different name of who you are supposed to share with. Have you too spent hours in the drink aisle, looking and looking to see if you could find your name, or your kid's name, or your cat's name?  And you know, I don't even drink Coke anymore (very often), and I am still obsessed with it.

I really hope I am not the only one out there that hangs a name on just about everything. I hope there is a kindred spirit somewhere that reads this, and that understands, that has likewise named their computer, their pillow, or their house. If there are, I would love to hear what you have named and why you named it that.  Then maybe next week we can talk about anthropomorphism, or why it is I always feel bad for that one lonely donut that gets left on the baker's rack when I take all of it's friends away....

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