During my grandparents’ era and the time before that, many people were uneducated. So, they take to naming their children after animals such as buffalos, birds and fish. You would be considered lucky if you didn’t end up being named after a pig or a rodent. But the unfortunate ones may end up being stuck with a nickname such as Stupid or Lazy Bum. That would definitely ruin one’s life.
Then, as people became more educated, their children’s names became more sophisticated and elegant. You can get endless possibilities by combining the plethora of colourful Chinese characters. However, some names still can’t escape ridicule as some smart ass in school would twist the pronunciations and make it sound like a totally different meaning.
In the late 20th century, Asians began adopting English names which were not spared ridicule as some found it difficult to pronounce certain names. A few of my primary school teachers did not know how to pronounce my name, Agnes. I still find some people struggle with its pronunciation these days.
Recently, baby names have become more and more outrageous. The most recent one is Kim Kardashian’s daughter named North West. Other crazy celebrity children’s names include Free, Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily, Audio Science and Moxie CrimeFighter. Names like these can work two ways – they are either cool or downright weird, and it would definitely be an easy target for ridicule.
So, if you want to name your child, choose something sweet and sensible. They are not a vehicle to fulfil your childhood fantasy character. Give them the respect they deserve.