Avri Roel Downey (Jr.)
Frazer Harrison/ BAFTA LA/ Getty
You know when you meet a new friend or a romantic partner and you’re drunk on them and everything is wonderful? You think they’re fantastic and where have they been all your life and then you realize, with a ‘chonk’ in your stomach, that they are about to reveal to you that they are not perfect. That they have some flaw.
The good news is the anticipation of that is usually far worse than the actual flaw. Which all of us have. But you know, it’s there.
These are the ones when it’s heartbreaking. You have someone you love, like Robert Downey Jr, and then you read the name he chose for his child, and your heart just sinks a little, and you go ‘OK, that's his thing’.
RDJ’s daughter was born earlier this week and yesterday he revealed she is named Avri Roel. In addition to the hilarious email Lainey and I got that said “Avri Roel is the Rural Juror of names”, it’s just kind of extra.
People tells me the name is not “Ahvrey”, the way I imagined it to rhyme with Aubrey, or even “AvRI”, like the French version of Henry, but in fact “Ay-Vree”.
So, Avery, then?
And of course on its own that’s not a weird name, that’s just …an annoying spelling. I never thought RDJ (or his super-cool wife) was that way.
But I should have known, because Avri’s brother is Exton, and their older sibling is Indio. They don’t go for the traditional, but seem to enjoy the ‘syllables first, actual feasibility as a name second’ school of naming.
The middle name – remember how rarely people are actually called by their first and middle names before we get upset and excited about this – is Roel, Ro-el being a mashup tribute of various elements of their parents’ names.
So now you know. Every friend has a flaw, and this is his. You can understand it – accept it, even? - and move on, knowing that, hey, at least it’s not worse, your friend’s flaw. Right?