January 14, 2006

I Don't Wanna Hyphenate

So I know that I want kids someday, exuberant little buggers who bounce off the walls and kick the back of my (hybrid) car seat and carry their own little "IMPEACH CONDI" signs when we show up on the Mall to protest. The thing is, though, I don't know what to call them. I mean, I have a couple ideas, I'm leaning towards Zoe in particular, but how about for a last name? I'm not wild about the idea of taking my partner/husband's name, and I wouldn't really want him to take mine either. I know, hyphenating your last name was once thought to be the progressive thing to do, but unless you're Daniel Day-Lewis, that means that you're lugging around many syllables of name for the rest of your life. Plus, if everyone hyphenated, then the next generation would have to lug around four names, computer systems would crash with the extra data, nuclear war would ensue. Basically, hyphenated last names could end life as we know it.

All of this is by way of introduction to this good-humored article, which explains how a straight couple reconciled their feminism with their surname attachment. "We were not trying to be Difficult," they insist. "We were not trying to be Edgy." I am down with both difficult and edgy, but anyway, good for them.


JSmithua said...

...but what if you have an odd number of children? Won't that upset the balance of power in the household? I still think hyphenation is cool... maybe because my last name is soooooooooooo boring and I would love to have "Phoenix" or "Gyllenhaal" added to the end of my name (or mine to theirs) to make my children's names a little more interesting. However, if you are having two children or four children or ten children, that idea sounds pretty amazing! However, I guess you could just combine the names, like "Gyllensmith" or "Smithix" for your kids if you wanted to be utterly ridiculous!

wannatakethisoutside said...

My parents flipped coins for our last names.

tea cozy said...

I know tons of kids who have different last names from their siblings (you know, eldest kid gets dad, youngest gets moms, or the other way around) and it's really fucking confusing for them. A lot of them are really little and don't know why their name is different from their siblings. On the other hand, in the Monterrie-Albin household, all the kids are surnamed "Montalbin," and it works out great... except that both parents occasionally get called Mr./Ms. Montalbin.

Meanwhile, my best friend from home, who had a really clunky hyphenated last name has chosen for herself and dropped the boringer half. Which I think is a good way to go. Hyphenating is fine, as long as you don't get screamingly offended if your kid decides to drop one of them.

I'm always in favor of choice :)

the word of the day is not a word but a name: the neologized name of a kid who ended up with SEVEN last names hyphenated together and decided to consolidate:

"kccmxwy" (klein-cambpell-chirstensen-mbata-xavier-woolsey-yesierska)

oh, PS... there's someone in my area whose legal name is QQ2Q6 (pronounced "kyootakyoosks".

BVBGB said...

oh, que n'ai-je pas d'autres noms ajoutés au mien!


maudite entendante said...

Mais t'as quand même juste un trait d'union parmi toute cette pléthore de noms...

Mot de vérification: sjmcx, Nama for "carrying on a conversation in a language most people around you don't speak"