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Wednesday, February 04, 2004

Sticks and stones...

Many people have expressed interest (thankfully, not dismay!) at the names we have chosen for our children. A lot of this surely stems from a basic unfamiliarity with Hebrew names. Heck, even though I consider myself fairly worldly, I've occasionally been left scratching my head while trying to mentally pronounce the name on the hack license in a NYC taxi ("um...I think you might wanna buy a vowel"). The issue, of course, is the clash of cultures.

Let's face it...there's no going back to the simple days of Ward and June Cleaver (as if such a time ever really existed) where names were like ice cream flavors; common and few. [Plea for help: If anyone knows how the heck they managed to arrive at ‘Beaver’ from Theodore, please let me know.]

To illustrate how far we've come...think about some of the names floating around today's classrooms. Now mentally place these names in a classroom, say, 40 or 50 years ago. No matter what funky, ethnic names today's hip parents proudly give their kids... back in the late '50s and early '60s those names would have condemned them to the 'unpopular couch' in that rush party scene in Animal House ("…and this is Mohammed, and Daglish…oh, you’ve met? Great!... so you’ll have lots to talk about!”).

C'mon...group hug to celebrate how open-minded we've all become!

Anyhooo...getting back to the names we chose, the short answer (hmmm, maybe too late for that, huh?) is as follows:

Ariella Tamar Bogner
Ariella = Lion in Hebrew (a grrrrl lion, to be specific)
Tamar = Date Palm in Hebrew
Ari is named for Zahava's Grandfather Leo
Leo = Lion
He was also a very upright person (like a Date Palm)

Simple right? Ok, on to #2

Gilad Chai Bogner
Gilad = Joy Forever in Hebrew
Chai = Life in Hebrew
Gilad is named for Zahava's mother Chai Goldi
Gilad Chai...Chai Goldi...see the phonetic and root connection?

Alrighty then...shall we move on to Mr. 3, Yonah Ze'ev Bogner?

Actually, I'm gonna wait until the Divine Mrs. B. gets her own blog up and running (any day now) and let her do the 'splainin' on that one. Even though Yonah is named for a couple of people in my family, Zahava was the one who wrote a really touching tribute (which I ended up delivering for you, ya big crybaby) for Yonah's Brit. Maybe if you ask nicely, she'll post it there.

OK...I've kept you kids cooped up inside long enough. Run along outside and play!

Here, you need a nice link to follow? Since we're on the subject of 'interesting' names, take a look at this Primer on Parent Cruelty. Cultural (and P.C.) niceties aside...it's sometimes never too early for parents to start making up those 'kick me' signs for their kid's backs.

Posted by David Bogner on February 4, 2004 | Permalink


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