Hi Duana!

I'm pregnant with boy and I would love your input. Basically, the criteria is really different and kind of badass without sounding like we're trying too hard (so nothing along the Jett, Axl, Ace lines). Our last name begins with a T and ends in -er, so preferably nothing that matches either of those, although I'm not dead set against it if we found something awesome.  So far, the only name we've come up with that we both like is Crosby (love that Parenthood), but I was hoping for some other options along those same lines. Anything you can give us would be awesome. Thanks!!



I love this request, because I think we should all be trying to have a badass. There’s no bad interpretation of that word, as far as I’m concerned. The thing is that, while I totally agree and endorse your rejection of Axl and Ace and everyone else from Top Gun (there really is a name boom of kids named Maverick), there are two wildly different schools of thought when it comes to “badass”.

For some parents, the route to unusual is slightly exotic and maybe unisex. Kai.  Dashiell. Leif. Jaya. Dmitri. For others, the height of cool is the height of nerd.   Augustus and Dexter and Cyril. So it really depends which ones float your boat.

I think a lot of these names fall under the category of wishful thinking – the name you would choose if your partner would allow it and your mother wouldn’t freak.  So let’s just go on a magical mystery tour of my favourites and see which ones land for you.

Jules. Roscoe. Wolfgang – you know you want to be able to call your kid Wolf.  Archibald, Archie, or for that matter, Arch? (Don’t actually call your kid Arch) How about Zane? It should sound like an action hero but I think it’s still unusual enough that it lands, and it’s an “n”-ending name that hasn’t been co-opted by every parent out there. Another one that was suggested as acceptable by a VERY conservative namer was Logan – if you want a hint of outlaw and a hint of sherriff, there you go.

Want to go even more unusual/multicultural? How about Yoshi or Djimon or Alonzo? How about Otto? God, please, please choose Otto. I love it so much. And that kid is a badass from day one. You know he is. Ezra? Maybe. Doyle? You could. But Otto. You know that kid is awesome.

Let me know!

(Lainey: I googled “badass baby” and this was one of the photos that came up. I laughed for a solid 10 minutes. Something tells me this kid is not called Dashiell.)