FREAK-TV: Name Your Kid Fido If You Want

Video

The latest FREAK-TV video features Levitt discussing the ever-interesting topic of naming your kid. We have had many people write to us since the book came out to say they chose their baby’s name (or, just as often, rejected a name they were considering) based on the data in our book.

What nobody knows (until now) is that one of Levitt’s own kids was named according to these data sets. After we’d worked up the list of “high-end” girls’ names that we thought might tip into the mainstream within 10 years (p. 187 of revised edition), Levitt gave his wife Jeannette that list of names to consider for their forthcoming kid. But he didn’t tell her what the list was; he just said they were some names he liked. Sure enough, she went for one of the names on the list: Sophie.

Sophie is a beautiful name, to be sure, but the big lesson here is more important: don’t ever marry an economist.

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  1. Zebee says:

    I have no idea if having an unusual name has made any difference. It is memorable, I get a lot of people who “know” me because they recall the name. From school teachers to prospective employers!

    I can answer the usual questions in one hit: Yes it is isn’t it, French orginally, an old family name.

    When at school it’s hard, but by the time I was a teenager I realised it was an asset and it has been one ever since. Quite possibly because it isn’t a hippy name and I can answer “old family name” instead of “I dunno, my parents thought it was cool”. What’s the current percentage of “names no one else has”?

    Zebee
    – and if you are named Zebee too, get in touch at zebeej@gmail.com we might be related!

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  2. Zebee says:

    I have no idea if having an unusual name has made any difference. It is memorable, I get a lot of people who “know” me because they recall the name. From school teachers to prospective employers!

    I can answer the usual questions in one hit: Yes it is isn’t it, French orginally, an old family name.

    When at school it’s hard, but by the time I was a teenager I realised it was an asset and it has been one ever since. Quite possibly because it isn’t a hippy name and I can answer “old family name” instead of “I dunno, my parents thought it was cool”. What’s the current percentage of “names no one else has”?

    Zebee
    – and if you are named Zebee too, get in touch at zebeej@gmail.com we might be related!

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  3. Ava says:

    @4 No effort!? I am sure he and his associates spent a lot of time collecting and analyzing data to come up with those names. Just because he didn’t use a baby name book makes it no effort? Or I suppose analyzing data is effortless? I hope you were being facetious?

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  4. Ava says:

    @4 No effort!? I am sure he and his associates spent a lot of time collecting and analyzing data to come up with those names. Just because he didn’t use a baby name book makes it no effort? Or I suppose analyzing data is effortless? I hope you were being facetious?

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  5. Rita: Lovely Meter Maid says:

    So, naming your kid “Fido” won’t have any negative effect, huh? Yeah, *right*. If you also tell me that “Fido” was on that list Levitt gave his wife, I Might believe that Steven Levitt actually believes *himself* when he says that a well-known doggie name is a perfectly fine handle to inflict upon a child. (And then, of course, I’d have to think that Steven Levitt is out of his mind, naturally).

    It’s just wrong to put forth this idea to the gullible masses that they can go ahead and give their kid a name like Fido.

    Not that celebrities are helping matters much, either, what with names like “Apple”, “Sailor Lee”, “Kal-el”, “Fifi Trixibelle”, “Peaches Honeyblossom” and “Little Pixie” (those last three are from Bob Geldof, who should be banned for life from ever giving anyone or any Thing a name. Ever).

    Perhaps *the* worst offender is John (Cougar) Mellancamp. Jeez, now here’s a guy who just couldn’t Bare to have that offensive and trivializing “Cougar” be part of his name, so he dropped it as soon as he could.

    Then he goes ahead and has a two kids, one of which is named “Hud” and the other: “Spec *Wildhorse* Mellencamp.

    Hearing that name really does “hurt so bad”. Mellencamp should also be banned from naming anyone.

    I guess with celebs, we are all to meant to see that, because they are so special, so uniquely gifted, talented and *successful*, that they can name their kids in the most outlandish and awkward ways.

    I also dislike last names as first names, a trend that should be stopped. Such names come off as mighty pretentious, all these: “Hunters”, “Tylers”, “Taylors”, “Brees”,
    “Morgans” and so forth.

    It’s regretful that so many people have such poor ability to give their child a wonderful name.

    I do think Sophie is a beautiful name. But Levitt should have been more upfront with his wife about where he got this name.

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  6. Rita: Lovely Meter Maid says:

    So, naming your kid “Fido” won’t have any negative effect, huh? Yeah, *right*. If you also tell me that “Fido” was on that list Levitt gave his wife, I Might believe that Steven Levitt actually believes *himself* when he says that a well-known doggie name is a perfectly fine handle to inflict upon a child. (And then, of course, I’d have to think that Steven Levitt is out of his mind, naturally).

    It’s just wrong to put forth this idea to the gullible masses that they can go ahead and give their kid a name like Fido.

    Not that celebrities are helping matters much, either, what with names like “Apple”, “Sailor Lee”, “Kal-el”, “Fifi Trixibelle”, “Peaches Honeyblossom” and “Little Pixie” (those last three are from Bob Geldof, who should be banned for life from ever giving anyone or any Thing a name. Ever).

    Perhaps *the* worst offender is John (Cougar) Mellancamp. Jeez, now here’s a guy who just couldn’t Bare to have that offensive and trivializing “Cougar” be part of his name, so he dropped it as soon as he could.

    Then he goes ahead and has a two kids, one of which is named “Hud” and the other: “Spec *Wildhorse* Mellencamp.

    Hearing that name really does “hurt so bad”. Mellencamp should also be banned from naming anyone.

    I guess with celebs, we are all to meant to see that, because they are so special, so uniquely gifted, talented and *successful*, that they can name their kids in the most outlandish and awkward ways.

    I also dislike last names as first names, a trend that should be stopped. Such names come off as mighty pretentious, all these: “Hunters”, “Tylers”, “Taylors”, “Brees”,
    “Morgans” and so forth.

    It’s regretful that so many people have such poor ability to give their child a wonderful name.

    I do think Sophie is a beautiful name. But Levitt should have been more upfront with his wife about where he got this name.

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  7. michael kagan says:

    Name you kid Fido if you want, but not… Wayne?

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  8. michael kagan says:

    Name you kid Fido if you want, but not… Wayne?

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