Naming another human being is weird.
I have four cats. I have not named any of them.
When I was little my siblings and I had cats and named them, but that was different. All names were approved by The Parents (whether explicitly or not), so it wasn't something I did ON MY OWN. I had approval from An Authority Figure.
Naming Troy Emmitt, the fetus, was like naming a character in a story. Because it wasn't real -- naming my fetus was like naming my GPS (her name is Gloria, by the way. She's very friendly, except when you go the wrong way and she has to recalculate... that irks her a bit. But I digress...)
Unless you count those community-chosen cat names when I was, what, twelve?, I'd never named another living being.
So, suddenly, I'm in charge of naming a baby? An actual PERSON? A person with his own thoughts and opinions?
Freddy and I didn't tell anyone Troy Emmitt's name until he was born. Freddy and I discussed the name, of course, but since we named the baby after his grandfathers, we chose the origin/tribute rather than the name, really (we didn't get to choose what baby's grandfathers' names were). And we -- Freddy and I -- decided baby'd go by his initials, instead of his first (or middle) name. So, really, we picked his nickname for him.
Um... I hope he likes it...?
Because of my freakouts during the pregnancy (Troy Emmitt was a bit of a diva; throughout the pregnancy he kept having scary test results or sonograms, even though there was NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT. Ornery fetus), I asked Freddy to call Troy Emmitt by his fetus name, not his future baby name. So we didn't even use the name until after The Birth.
It was weird.
I called him "the baby" for the first few weeks. It took me time to get used to using his actual name.
AND WHAT IF HE DIDN'T LIKE HIS NAME??
What if we picked the wrong one?
Should we have gone with those names? What was he going to think of his Spanish middle name (my dad's name)? Should we have used the English equivalent of that name? Was he going to hate having to spell it out for people all the time? Do the names sound weird because one's in English and the other in Spanish? What about his first name -- we used Freddy's dad's first name, even though Freddy's dad went by his middle name. Should we have used that instead? Is he going to like going by his initials, or is he going to think that's too cheesy? HOW WAS I SUPPOSED TO KNOW THIS STUFF???
Kid was barely a few hours old and I'd already screwed up, scarred him for life.
Freddy and the grandmas used the baby's name so casually, so confidently. As if it were, like, his name; as if it was supposed to be his name, and there wasn't anything wrong with it.
So, after a while, I started using it, too.
He seems to like it. So far.
We'll see what he has to say about it, you know, once he starts talking and stuff...
And after all the hullabaloo about his real-life name, I had to figure out what to call the little booger here, on the blog. Freddy suggested Freddy, Jr., which I vetoed because WHAT ABOUT ME?? I thought about Criss, Jr., but that's not fair to Freddy, and Criss-Freddy Jr., is just silly.
I thought of Little Red, short for Little Red Cryin' Dude, also in honor of his carrot-top mop. Or Red Hulk, as my sister observed (srsly, you should see him change colors when he get mad), which is fitting considering how much radiation the guy got in utero thanks to all the extra sonograms he made us give him.
I came up with a few others, I think, but they were all equally not good.
So I'm going with MonkeyBoy. Which is what his daddy calls him. (It's what his daddy called the cat, but the cat's been demoted. Now the baby's MonkeyBoy. The cat's just plain ol' Gus now.)
(In case you're wondering, by the way, yes, we have called the baby by the cats' names. Both of us. More than once. More than one cat name. It's OK, though, I don't think the kid noticed. Or the cats.)