28 March 2012

Dug! Rows! You two get in here!

Some proper and common noun pairs are homophones/heterographs (sound alike; written differently). When the proper noun is a person's given name, we're generally oblivious to the common noun meaning. If you haven't nodded off yet, see what I mean:

Carin' and Sharin' sure
make a cute lesbian couple!
Here's Carolin' now.
Her husband and parents
  are a-carolin', too.
Do you know women named Carin' and Sharin'? Such sweet names. . . . 

How about Carolin'? As in:  Deck the Halls. 

Well, what did they expect  
when they named her Blare?

Less festive but no less illustrative:  Blare and Die. Yes, it appears that even when choosing the baby's name parents don't always pick up on this. There are parents who would heedlessly call their little girl Die.

Princess . . .
 [Brief editorial: How many times 
had she asked, Please retreat?
And these were people she'd known
for years, that hunted her down.]  

For guy names, let's start with Pall. 
Quite diminished.
Need I say more? 

   And how about poor Wane?  

Additional examples: 
Less, Kneel, and of course the twins, Decks and Wrecks. 

"Less is More."(There's Less now, on the left.)

Decks and Wrecks after an afternoon at 
McDonald's Playhouse.  Sadly, they are banned 
for a length of time still to be determined.

Hey, Kneel! How's 
it goin', buddy?


Final note (if you're still with me):  I thought of a name, really a nickname, that cues most English speakers to pick up on both meanings. Except for some astonishingly clueless parents . . . who could have gone with Rich. Or Rick.


  1. You are obsessed with names, why?

  2. I'm obsessed with words. Language, more generally.