What's Happening to Our Celbrity Babies?

February 26, 2010
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Moxie CrimeFighter, Fifi Trixibelle, and Pilot Inspektor. No, these aren’t the names of badly animated cartoon characters in a poorly rated children’s show. No, these aren’t ice cream flavors and Ben & Jerry’s, or names for the hip new dolls all the pre-schoolers are playing with. These are the names of real-live people. More specifically, the names of he people us Americans obsess over: celebrity babies. People have always been obsessed with the children of celebrities, scooping up magazines before they have time to cool on the shelves from the sweaty hands of the deliverers. Most popular of which seem to be the ones emblazed with something along the lines of “IT’S A BOY. OBAMAS NAME HIM SNOOPY LIMEPEEL.” Our Hollywood world is suffering from what I would like to call RNS, or Ridiculous Name Syndrome. In recent times, celebrities have departed from the traditional “Emily” and “Joshua” and adventured into more unfamiliar territories with names such as “Kenzo” and “Kal-El.” Why do these celebrities feel their children need names that are . . . more than average? Are their children not special enough already, being the children of celebrities? Since babies with weird names get more publicity, celebrities feel inclined to bestow ridiculous names on their unfortunate children, just to get themselves more publicity.

Some people might say that celebrities are talented artists, and naming their children something “special” is just their creativity coming out and taking over. Celebrity super-fans are eager to jump out to defend their favorite celebrity, and their encouragement is the main cause of the continuing RNS epidemic. If celebrities are so creative when it comes to baby naming, then why do they give names straight out of Miriam-Webster? “Audio Science” and “Banjo Patrick” are sad examples of RNS.

In an article in the New York Times, psychologists claim people subconsciously name their babies after something they obsess over. Does this mean Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin are obsessed with . . . Apples? Unlikely. What psychologists may mean when they make this claim (which does not, by the way, apply to everyone) is that celebrities take the opportunity of naming a child to express their own opinions and beliefs. Thus, they are using their child’s identity to let the world know what they believe. You see a problem with this? When a parent names a child “Jermajesty” they are basically claiming their child is superior to all. Hello? Conceited much? What’ll the kids on the playground say when a kid introduces themselves as “Your Majesty?” Let them have a turn on the swing? Not likely.

Susan Fischoff said in regard to RNS afflicted celebrities, "They're expressing their creativity, and they're also expressing their fear. It would be very embarrassing for people to think of them as normal.” It is now the norm to give a famous baby a super special name. Any celebrity who doesn’t conform is going against what society expects from them. Who would want to pick up a magazine with a screaming headline announcing “JANE IS BORN”? Average people themselves are succumbing to this horrible trend. Awkward baby names are popping up all over the place, though none can meet up with the standards of the celebrities. Now that average people are following in the footsteps of their idols, more pressure is placed upon the shoulders of the rich and famous. Sure, average people can give crazy cool names. Celebrities just have to give crazier cooler ones. Pamela Satran, a baby name book author, perfectly sums up the unspoken pressure put on expecting celebrities by comparing baby naming with anorexia. She says, “Anyone can be thin. The famous have to be thinner."

Baby name trends rise and fall consistently with the names of celebrities. Ryder was the 901st most popular boys’ name in 2001, but after Kate Hudson and Chris Robinson gave their son that name in 2004, the name shot up in popularity to number 341. Before Obama was running for president, the name Barack was number 12,535. During the presidential race, however, the name jumped up almost 10,000 spots to 2,409th. If celebrities have such massive influence over the baby naming of the rest of the world, what will happen when horrid celebrity names like “Dweezil” hit the top thousand? Celebrity influence can be a horrible thing. When naming their child something like “Eugenie,” celebrities are perfectly aware their fans will jump onto the train and begin christening their children as Eugenies. Do they care? Obviously not. If they cared even a teeny tiny microscopically small bit, they wouldn’t be bestowing names such as “Peaches Honeyblossom” left and right. Wouldn’t you feel honored if someone named a baby after you? That’s right. That’s exactly what these celebrities are doing with their incredulous names. You are a celebrity. You name a child “Moon Unit.” A hundred other people name their child Moon Unit. You feel special.

Out of all the horrible celebrity baby names out there, my personal favorite is Pilot Inspektor. What was Jason Lee thinking when he pulled two word straight out of the dictionary, misspelled one of them, and slapped them on a birth certificate? Is he obsessed with Pilots. . .and misspelled inspectors? Did he just feel increased pressure to give his child an extremely unique name? Or did he think people would follow in his footsteps and his son’s name would break the top thousand, guaranteeing him more fame? Whichever reason, the number of RNS cases is increasing across the globe, and the only way to stop it is if we average people resist conformity and stop the ridiculousness of it all.

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