Baby Boy Names? Help!
August 30, 2009 1:18 PM   Subscribe

Baby Name Block: I'm pregnant with my third boy. I'm so totally out of boy names it isn't even funny. I have a total block. Help me get inspired by participating in this exercise.

Okay, so I'd rather have the name mean something to me rather than just "sound nice" although of course that is a factor. Picking random names from baby name books/sites is doing nothing for me. I need more.

So, tell me stories about a person who inspires you or touched your life in some way. It can be a real life person, a person in history, a fictional or mythical person, etc. I won't rule out women, but lets just say I doubt I'd be naming my boy "Sue" but if you think a woman's name might work, well, okay.

I'm looking for something that might touch me or mean something to me or seem to suit my situation with this kid. Maybe you can plant a seed (or a whole tree) in my head with a meaningful story of a special someone who means something to you. Go for it!
posted by Bueller to Society & Culture (79 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
I like the name Nemo. Captain Nemo was pretty cool. I had a friend that I wanted to name her boy Nemo back in the 90s. Before the movie came out and ruined it, sort of.

I really like the name. I like the way it looks. I like saying it and I like hearing it. Nemo.
posted by jeff-o-matic at 1:23 PM on August 30, 2009

Jack or Jackson after Jackie Robinson.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 1:25 PM on August 30, 2009

In the same vein as JohnnyGunn - Satchel or Satch, after Satchel Paige.
posted by Ufez Jones at 1:27 PM on August 30, 2009

Not a story but a suggestion...look up in your family tree. Look at middle names or last names or first of them will fit.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 1:30 PM on August 30, 2009 [2 favorites]

My Grandfather, Martin Remsen was one of the greatest people in the entire world. He was a great pediatric surgeon and dedicated educator.
posted by schyler523 at 1:30 PM on August 30, 2009

Can I help by telling you names I think are hideous:

Jayden, Brayden, Gary, Jackson, Brooks, Griffin, Tyler, Dylan, Bruce, Brice, Chase, Brandon, Aidan, Bailey, Trip, Gavin, Dane Cook, Gage or Patrick...I really think the name Patrick sounds weird.

You can't go wrong with John or Jacob. People won't have preconceptions about him with such very common names. I usually think any kid named Griffin or Brooks is a country club member who is destined to suffer overcoddling from the mother.
posted by anniecat at 1:31 PM on August 30, 2009 [6 favorites]

posted by netbros at 1:32 PM on August 30, 2009 [7 favorites]

@jeff-o-matic Did you know nemo is Latin for "no one/nobody"? So in 20,000 Leagues it is Captain Nobody.
posted by sbutler at 1:33 PM on August 30, 2009

You could name him "Matt Howie Bueller," which sounds interesting to me, anyway.
posted by anniecat at 1:34 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

Look to your favorite books.

The main character in my favorite book is named Bjartur, which may come off as strange as I have never even met an Icelandic person. But the hipsters would never see it coming.
posted by Darth Fedor at 1:35 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

I think any man named Satchel Paige will get stuffed into a locker. Both sound girlish now.
posted by anniecat at 1:35 PM on August 30, 2009

If I were to have another boy I'd want to name him Ransom. It's actually a family name and wasn't unheard of back in the day.
posted by Sassyfras at 1:42 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

check your MeFi mail.
posted by gursky at 1:45 PM on August 30, 2009

Roland was my dad's name. He was called "Rolly" by everyone. I suppose it's the sort of name that might make a kid's life difficult but my dad turned out ok. He was a fireman and a dedicated member/leader of many in most of our town's community organizations.
posted by bonobothegreat at 1:50 PM on August 30, 2009

A boy that lived above me was named Cary, like Cary Grant. I always thought that it sounded good, and went with his personality.
posted by Grlnxtdr at 1:55 PM on August 30, 2009

Required reading for anyone picking out baby names.

I thought I made up Kaden until I discovered it already in use.
posted by IndigoRain at 2:17 PM on August 30, 2009 [5 favorites]

My uncle James was a remarkable person. He was brilliant (spoke more languages than I can count and built musical instruments for fun) but was also the warmest, funniest person I knew. He traveled the world to meet people, not to be able to say he'd been to X country. He made himself a spare grandpa to me and many other kids. He believed strongly in justice for the poor and environmental justice for the earth. I miss him terribly, and it would be so lovely to have a little boy named after him.

If this speaks to you, I'd be happy to send pictures or share more info.
posted by ohio at 2:19 PM on August 30, 2009

Not what you asked for, but as Darth Fedor said, what about literature? If you're a book lover, have you checked out A is for Atticus?
posted by Ashley801 at 2:20 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

Ruling out anything that ends in N might kick-start your creativity.
posted by stuck on an island at 2:24 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

Desmond FTW. My father-in-law's name, and my kid's middle name.
posted by cyniczny at 2:33 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

A friend was an odd-job guy, on-and-off motorcycle courier, and punk/reggae enthusiast in 1980s Brixton, wasn't going where he wanted to go, up and moved to Poland in 1993, was a DJ for a while, met the woman of his dreams, and made himself a life he loves, with a great family and the open road still before him, waiting for him to open the throttle.

posted by mdonley at 2:37 PM on August 30, 2009

Check out surnames in your family, particularly ones that stopped from having no male children.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 2:38 PM on August 30, 2009 [2 favorites]

I always liked Jack.
posted by The Whelk at 2:42 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

Harry. Jamie/James.
posted by purlgurly at 2:49 PM on August 30, 2009

posted by spinturtle at 3:02 PM on August 30, 2009

I love the name alan. Ive only ever met people i like called alan. Definately spelt with one "l" tho, allan or other variations just look weird to me
posted by stillnocturnal at 3:07 PM on August 30, 2009

Wayne. Reminds me of grass, horses, summer, construction, learning to drive, few words spoken but they always mean something, an old 1950s b&w photo where he looks like james dean on his motorcycle. My grandpa is a cool dude.
posted by shinyshiny at 3:08 PM on August 30, 2009

My grandfather was the kindest, most gentle man I ever knew. He was in the army, he taught elementary school kids, he preached the "true teachings of Jesus," as he put it - kindness, love, forgiveness, equality, peace - at his church. He loved all of us grandkids unconditionally and would regularly take us out individually to just do stuff with him. We always got tractor rides and he got us real live chicks for Easter one year (he lived on a farm). He taught me how to pick cotton, he taught me how to fish, and he taught me how to hold my head up high when people weren't kind to me.

He lived in Mississippi and my family lived in Indiana. I have a cousin my age who was graduating from high school at the same time I was. My grandfather made the drive up to Indiana saying that he saw all my cousin's ball games, he saw all his accomplishments; the least he could do was see me graduate. I was the first in the family to go to college and he was ridiculously proud of me for that. Even though he was ill, he drove up again to see me graduate from college. He came to my wedding and cried during the ceremony, this big, burly army vet farmer man. My husband reminds me a lot of my grandfather, as a matter of fact. Kind, sensitive, strong, loving.

When I had my son and called my grandfather to tell him that the baby's middle name was his, he cried again. He got to meet my son when the baby was 5 months old and he just went on and on about how perfect he was and there wasn't another child like him ever, anywhere. He died before I had my second child and the world lost a wonderful, wonderful man.

His name was Dalton.
posted by cooker girl at 3:19 PM on August 30, 2009 [2 favorites]

If your goal is to get a name that means something to you, why are you asking for names that mean something to me?
posted by box at 3:19 PM on August 30, 2009 [5 favorites]

I like Desmond, too. And Lawrence (my brother's middle name).
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 3:20 PM on August 30, 2009

I am not too sure i have a wonderful story to tell.

But i love the name Gabriel(Gabe for short) for boys. It's a religious name (if you are not into that, i'm sorry) I think the name is mysterious and gentle at the same time.

The boy's name Gabriel \g(a)-briel, gab-riel\, also used as girl's name Gabriel, is pronounced GAY-bree-el. It is of Hebrew origin, and its meaning is "God's able-bodied one; hero of God". Biblical: the archangel Gabriel is the only angel besides Michael named in the canonical Scriptures.

Going in a different direction..

I knew a Mexican girl who was beautiful beyond words. Her accent was amazing, i really liked her alot. Well, we talked for a while and we became friends. Of course, we drifted apart due to the distance we lived apart from each other. ahem, back to the name lol
one day we talked about children's names and she told me she liked the name "Sebastian".
I know it's not an awesome name, but i think it embodies character. To this day i still remember how she pronounced it. It melted my heart and it sounded so beautiful. I fully expect to name one of my children it.

The boy's name Sebastian \s(e)-bas-tian, seb(a)-stian\ is pronounced se-BASS-tian. It is of Greek origin, and its meaning is "revered". The original form of this name referred to those from a particular city or region of Asia minor, whose Greek name was from the Latin imperial title "Augustus". Saint Sebastian, who probably was a native of that place, was a third-century martyred centurion who became patron saint of soldiers.
posted by xexe at 3:22 PM on August 30, 2009


As in, Victor Laszlo, from the movie Casablanca? Blurb from Sparknotes: "...He is the pure embodiment of the noble hero, as a good as any man can be. Laszlo is handsome, confident, idealistic, outspoken, unwavering, and impassioned. He is married to the beautiful Ilsa, and he loves his wife so much that when he learns about Ilsa and Rick, he claims to understand. He is willing to sacrifice himself so that Ilsa can escape Casablanca safely. Yet Laszlo's true love is politics. The desire to defeat the Nazis is the prime motivation for all his actions. Despite the difficulties of his political struggle, he considers himself privileged to struggle through it. Laszlo is a symbol of the resistance. He represents unwavering commitment, a quality that makes him as valuable to the Allies as he is dangerous to the Nazis."

Various baby name websites source it as Hungarian or Slavonic, meaning "glorious rule." I think it'd be a kickass first name, but if it's a little too exotic, I think it'd be great as a middle name too.
posted by hegemone at 3:23 PM on August 30, 2009

Laslo is a pretty popular baby name nowadays.

I'd suggest Nymbler. Put in your other kids' names and find simliar ones.

My 9-month-old is Thatcher. We also considered Dexter and Fletcher. Recent friends' picks are Sawyer and Davis. No one misspells or mispronounces.

In my neck of the woods, names ending in N are soon to be over - Braden, Ian, Sebastian. Also soon to be over - Atticus, Myles, and Luke.
posted by k8t at 3:29 PM on August 30, 2009

Tristan, my middle name.
posted by globotomy at 3:32 PM on August 30, 2009

John. It's a brick of a name, and you could go with Johnny or Jack if you liked. Pair it with a polysyllabic middle name and you're good to go. If I ever have a son, that's what I'll do. It's my grandfather's name, and he's a hero of mine.
posted by Countess Elena at 3:47 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

Isaac means laughter and can be shortened to Izzy (imo) like the awesome GnR backup guitarist
posted by wolfkult at 3:52 PM on August 30, 2009

This is difficult to do when we don't know the last name.

Jack or Jackson after Jackie Robinson.

"Jackson" is a great first name, but not if you're last name is very ethnic, like Dellamitri or Ruiz.

A name like "Jackson" or "Desmond" only works well with a common, one-syllable, waspy last name like Frye or Ford or Baines or BROWN.

Never pair a quirky first name with a non-traditional last name.

And for god's sake, don't make up a name or concoct some odd spelling of a common name.
posted by Zambrano at 3:57 PM on August 30, 2009

Wyatt. It's an awesome, cool cowboy name and my son's name!! Can't go wrong!!
posted by pearlybob at 4:11 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

His name was Dalton.

Plus, you know, Dalton, the world's greatest Tai Chi bouncer.

OK, maybe that won't work for you. But if Mr. F and I were going to have kids, and we had a boy child, he'd probably completely shit his pants with joy if I let him name the kid Dalton. Or "Sam Elliott," speaking of the same movie.

I'm pretty sure your household operates nothing like mine, though, which is why we're not having kids and you're on your third.

(My BIL and his wife opted for "Wyatt." Is your kid maybe a Wyatt too?)
posted by fairytale of los angeles at 4:11 PM on August 30, 2009

I think Helen Keller was amazing and thought Keller would be a great name.
Vonnegut is a great name. Vonn for short.
I also liked Beckett.
posted by beccaj at 4:13 PM on August 30, 2009 [3 favorites]

I named my two boys after superheroes, using part of the name as the middle name. Matthew Murdock Lastname and Charles Xavier Lastname. So, they're common enough first names that they won't draw playground shenanigans, but there's a secret hidden inside each one.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 4:14 PM on August 30, 2009 [5 favorites]

Yes, we need to know your last name to help with this. Or at least the number of syllables and which syllable the accent is on. Can you post how many syllables and the accent pattern of your last name?

This is important. The best name in the world will sound unpleasant if it doesn't go well with your last name. I mean, my first and middle names are both perfectly fine and traditional boys names. But they both are two syllables with the accent on the first syllable. And, unfortunately, so is my last name. So while I have perfectly fine names individually, the pattern is BA-bump BA-bump BA-bump and it just doesn't sound pleasant at all. My full name is freaking trochaic trimeter. Trochaic trimeter is great and all, but not for your name.

Illustrative example: Christopher Robin or Christopher Wren. Sound kind of milquetoast these days but certainly flow nicely and are quite pleasant to the ear. Now try "Christopher Robinson". Far less pleasing even though it's just a "son" tacked on to the end of one of the pleasing names. Christopher Ellison Robinson would be dactylic trimeter and not so hot.

Summary: we need to know the stress pattern of your last name. Poetic names are not the same as poetry. Avoid things like trochaic or dactylic trimeter.
posted by Justinian at 4:15 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

Along Cool Papa Bell's lines, a friend of mine's son is Jack Ryan Lastname. Took the wife a while to catch on.
posted by fairytale of los angeles at 4:18 PM on August 30, 2009 [2 favorites]

My father's name is Grant, and he's the most wonderful person in my world. He grew up with alcoholic parents; his father committed suicide when he was six. My grandmother never quite kicked the habit and his younger sister started with the substance abuse fairly young as well. He started working at fourteen to help make sure that the water and the electric stayed on. He worked his way all the way through high school, where he was also a state-qualifying athlete, and through college, where he met my mother. He became a police officer, and he worked full-time and balanced a family, while going to school at night to study for his master's degree in criminology. He always placed the health, happiness, and education of my sister and I above all else. He wanted to make sure that his children had all of the things he didn't have growing up - he wanted to make sure that we felt safe and happy, and that we never wanted for anything that we could feasibly achieve and which he could feasibly provide. Oh, and... he also restores old muscle cars. He's pretty amazing.

My father is the hardest-working, most tenacious, hilarious, good-hearted man in the world. His name, Grant, is Scottish, and means "tall" or "big" - it was my grandmother's maiden name, as well. Congratulations on your new addition - best of luck with the rest of your pregnancy and finding a name!
posted by honeybee413 at 4:24 PM on August 30, 2009

Our son is Alexander, and that is shortened to "Al" very easily. (A family name of ours -- a middle name of my grandfather, and uncle, etc.) That's a name that I really like.

On the other hand, my name is hideous -- never, ever, ever name a kid Caleb. if you do, I will tell your child that I warned you! (I'm only offering this advice because some people do name their child Caleb -- a name that means dog, by the way -- and I feel I should have gone back and warned them ahead of time, maybe by time travel.)


Caleb (Kalepa is the Hawaiian spelling of Caleb)
posted by Kalepa at 4:29 PM on August 30, 2009

I'd suggest Nymbler.

What? "Nymbler" would make a terrible name for a...

posted by nicwolff at 4:32 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

I'm a martial history buff, so for a boy I like Alcibiades and Tamerlane.
posted by nicwolff at 4:32 PM on August 30, 2009

A friend once told me: "I would want to give my children poetic names that will get them beat up in middle school but will get them laid in their twenties." In that vain, I suggest Caspian. I like the sound of the shortened "Cas" or "Cass" as well.
posted by Osrinith at 4:38 PM on August 30, 2009

Ross Everett Clayton: my grandfather.

Unfortunately he died when I was nine, and so I never got the chance to sit down and have any real deep conversations with him, but he was an incredible man.

Served in Canada's Medical Corps during WWII, over in Holland. He was known for "borrowing" army supplies like rations and coal, and sneaking them off to a specific impoverished Dutch family he met while there. These regular provisions are most likely the reason the family survived the war, and my grandparents and my mother were able to go back and visit that family's children years later.

This man had incredible compassion for animals, as well. He always carried a gun in the trunk of his car, but not for self defense or hunting. Anytime he saw "roadkill" while driving, he would stop the car, pull over, and check to see if the animal was at all still alive and suffering. If so, he would put the animal out of its misery. He helped birth my family dog's 8 puppies, while taking care of our cat's 6 newborn kittens at the same time.

i miss you, grandpa!
posted by hasna at 4:40 PM on August 30, 2009

Echoing Justinian, give your son a name that works in confluence with your last name. A mellifluous sounding name with have people literally singing his praises.
posted by any major dude at 4:43 PM on August 30, 2009

How about Destry?

When I first went away to an orientation session at my college, our group leader was a tall, lanky fellow with brightly dyed hair, a killer smile, and just dripping with charisma. He was the kind of guy most RAs wish they were, but never really are: laid-back, approachable, knowledgeable, and just very, very cool. I remember he helped us break into the stadium through a hole in the fence so we could take pictures for a scavenger hunt. Granted, it doesn't take much to impress clueless freshmen, but still, his name was pretty cool.
posted by Diagonalize at 4:44 PM on August 30, 2009

Joe or Tom or Harris or William. Conrad or Calvin. Lorenzo. Fortunato. Rio. Please no Josh or Jason or Justin or Dylan.
posted by thinkpiece at 5:11 PM on August 30, 2009

Gabriel. One of the more universal names, always as a prophet, always an important figure; handsome, dignified, and uncommon (without being weird).

Hebrew: גַּבְרִיאֵל / Gavriʼel
Latin: Gabrielus;
Greek: Γαβριήλ,
Arabic: جبريل, Jibrīl / جبرائيل Jibrail
Aramaic: Gabri-el
posted by mr. remy at 5:14 PM on August 30, 2009

Oh, and Charles and Edward.
posted by thinkpiece at 5:14 PM on August 30, 2009

posted by Eamon at 5:37 PM on August 30, 2009

With our third child/second boy, we were down to Silas and Cyrus. My older son, Walker, said,"My baby brother's name is Cy-r-us," and so it was. My youngest son is named Lincoln Darwin (no you can't copy!), and I'd always wanted to name a boy "Jack London--."

And then, of course, there's Tom.
posted by emhutchinson at 5:39 PM on August 30, 2009

There are some truly awful suggestions here. Do the kid a favour and remember that what seems distinctive and unusual to you = at least two punches in the schoolyard for the poor boy. I speak from experience. Give him something ordinary. Ignore the suggestions for the archaic or elaborate. Especially avoid surnames as first names. The idea that you'll give him some sort of unique identity with a unique name is bogus. But, if you must, then call him Bogus.
posted by A189Nut at 5:44 PM on August 30, 2009 [4 favorites]

"Jackson" is a great first name, but not if you're last name is very ethnic, like Dellamitri or Ruiz.

Never pair a quirky first name with a non-traditional last name.

I don't think this is necessarily good advice, what makes a name "quirky" and "non-traditional" and "ethnic" is so relative. Also, I think Jackson Ruiz sounds pretty good.
posted by illenion at 5:48 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

"Jackson" is a great first name, but not if you're last name is very ethnic, like Dellamitri or Ruiz.
There are people named Jackson Ruiz.

Coincidentally, it is also the name of a very expensive hair salon in my city.

Names "complementing" their last names or not is really subjective for the most part.

I was also going to suggest checking into family names to see if there's anything you like. I would share some of mine, but you probably don't want some of the most absurd 19th century hillbilly names you've ever heard. Perhaps I can share these with the new generation of hipsters, though.
posted by ishotjr at 6:21 PM on August 30, 2009

Name him Thor. He won't get teased for having a girly name.

He'll probably get teased for something, though.
posted by cleverevans at 6:30 PM on August 30, 2009

Another favorite: Wilder (Wiley for short)
posted by Sassyfras at 6:39 PM on August 30, 2009

I think either Atticus or Finch would make a great boys name.
posted by BusyBusyBusy at 6:52 PM on August 30, 2009

I'm not a good one to ask about this, because I've always sworn that if I ever do have a kid I'm going to name it something hilarious, that said, two suggestions:

1) Name him after Matt Haughey. The fact that you posted this question I think merits that.
2) Whatever you do end up naming him, end the name with the phrase 'of [whatever city he's born in].' I don't know what happened to this tradition, but it's awesome. For example, Matt Haughey of Springfield, or Matt Haughey of Ft. Wayne.

As long as you don't live in McMinnville, you're golden.

All of that aside, I name my cats after my favorite philosophers....Wittgenstein, Spinoza....
posted by Lutoslawski at 7:09 PM on August 30, 2009

May I suggest using a biographical dictionary as a baby name book?
posted by kmennie at 7:14 PM on August 30, 2009

Travis. Always thought it was a cool name, always wanted to date a guy named Travis. Never met one though, so it'd be pretty unique.
posted by KateHasQuestions at 7:45 PM on August 30, 2009

I had a professor who was everyone's favorite person on campus. The first day of class, he would tell everyone to go home and call their parents to say thanks, and he was the kind of guy who could say that without it being cheesy. He treated undergraduates as if they knew something and made them want to live up to it. He was smart enough to know how to make complex issues understandable. He was a military man, a humanitarian, had withstood the loss of his wife and children in an accident, and was himself killed while on a roadside helping someone with car trouble. His name was Bob.
posted by lakeroon at 8:16 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

When I was a teacher I had some kids with great names. My favorite, probably, was Odin. I was a little disappointed to learnt, halfway through the year, that Odin was a nickname and not his birth name.

His birth name was Odysseus.
posted by dirtdirt at 8:29 PM on August 30, 2009

I strongly doubt we'll ever have a second child, but if we do and its a boy, my husband and I have agreed that we'll name him Frederick, after the one man we both most admire: Mr Rogers.
posted by anastasiav at 8:59 PM on August 30, 2009

go with Dan. it's my name, and i'm awesome.
posted by Mach5 at 9:44 PM on August 30, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks, all...keep 'em coming. I have found some that I like and are worth some thought.

As to why I'm asking for meaningful names to you when this is about finding a meaningful name for me, its because I've got such a block that I can't think of anything meaningful, so your stories and names might trigger some of my own.

As to my last name...someone already suggested it as a first name (In jest, I believe...based on my call sign) above. You'll figure it out. But two syllables, emphasis on the first.
posted by Bueller at 9:46 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

Check out surnames in your family, particularly ones that stopped from having no male children.

Please do not do this. I beg you. There is such a vogue for surnames-as-given-names, and fads like this always end. Which means that by the time your boy is thirty, his name will sound very dated. Additionally, these names are very prone to gender drift - names like Harrison and Hunter are being used for both sexes. If your boy grows up shy, quiet, 'wimpy' or effeminate in any way, it's not going to help matters any if the school bully is able to say 'Hey, you have the same name as my sister!'

I realize that using surnames that actually belonged to your ancestors is different from the way the majority of these names are chosen (just plucked out of nowhere because they sound 'classy'), but no one's going to know that you did something different. And even if you explain it to them, it will just make you sound woefully pretentious, since using old family surnames as given names is a practice associated with socially prominent 'old money' families. Unless you actually are a Vanderbilt or something, don't do this.
posted by eatyourcellphone at 10:20 PM on August 30, 2009 [1 favorite]

I really like Marius. It has a special place in my heart because of Les Miserables. I always thought it would well as a name in various languages.
posted by dealing away at 11:24 PM on August 30, 2009

My husband's parents chose the last name of one of FIL's frat brothers. Not because they wanted especially to pay tribute to the guy, but because they liked the sound of it. He loved having a relatively uncommon but easily-spelled name through his childhood. But now it's a very common name for 5-year-olds. You can't predict what will be common or uncommon, or whether your kid would prefer a weird name or a common name.

Who was a kind boy in your elementary school? Daniel was one in mine.
Who was a funny, energetic guy you knew in high school? Jim and Brian were two in mine.
Great dancer, whose spirit you'd love to give to any kid? Ben.
Beloved male relative? William. Robert.
Supreme Court justice? Thurgood.
posted by LobsterMitten at 11:29 PM on August 30, 2009

I just met the son of a friend of mine. He is the sort of kick-ass kid I would want MY kid to be (someday) and his name is Leroy! I dig it!

Oh... and Vincent and Leo.
posted by aggressive rabbit at 12:56 AM on August 31, 2009

Calvin was my grandfather's name. I loved him and miss him very much.

Also, I would like to throw in a few names that are maybe more common over here in the UK, both of which I love - Oliver and Harvey.
posted by triggerfinger at 3:46 AM on August 31, 2009

I named two of my triplets after people I went to school with. And not like, dear friends, either. Just guys I went to school with. Miles was a classmate in elementary school, for heaven's sake. And Linus and I went to college together. (Oliver, I just liked.)

So maybe pull out those old yearbooks. :)
posted by pyjammy at 1:23 PM on August 31, 2009

Boy's names ARE much harder to choose than girls so you have my sympathy. You have to deciede if the names may switch genders soon (I know several boys and girls in the same class with names like Jordan and Riley) as well how they will handle teasing. There is the American tradition of using the last name of the president as a first name (like Kennedy). Why not look at the smaller selection of Canadian P.M's Naming your child Diefenbaker gets both of you honorary Canadian citizenship.

That nymbler looks so cool but when I put my four children's names in the choices they gave me for boys were all meh. (Hans, Adelard, Fay - WTF??) YMMV

My son went over a week without a name. Finally, we decided on a name (my husbands first choice - Django) only to have someone make fun of it to my husband a few weeks later. He was renamed MY first choice and receives a lot of compliments on it. I can't give you it though because it belongs to him now. SO don't be afraid to wait a bit after he is born. You can use the place-holder trey or san.

How it goes with your last name is important but also how it works with his brothers names too. If they are Butch and Max your son will not be served well by a "girly" name like Lester. If your sons are Felix and Rex then a name like Leotine would fit well. Figure out what kind of name your sons have (classic, ethnic, stylish, quirky etc) and choose a name from the same category. If you like traditional names I like Jeremy though.

Beyond Ava and Aiden is a good baby name book that just came out that I recommend. It explores why certain names apeal to you as well as having lists in categories:"Green Names (Bay, Willow, Aster), Hipster Names (Pearl, Ruby, Dexter),Names That Work (Archer, Baker, Carter), Vintage Chic (Daisy, Clementine, Felix), Metrodude Names (Jackson, Jax, Maddox), Baby Gods and Goddesses (Juno, Orion, Clio)."
posted by saucysault at 3:25 PM on August 31, 2009

posted by granted at 7:34 PM on August 31, 2009

Give him first and middle names that have lots of variants, so he can have a chance to easily rename himself when he gets older.

According to this site, John has 85 variations.
posted by marsha56 at 10:43 PM on August 31, 2009

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