I recently encountered a very blond, Nordic looking woman with a striking toddler of fiery red hair and as I can never resist my brethren, I struck up a conversation:

“You’re little boy Is. So. Cute! I. Love. His. Hair!”

“Thanks, it matches his temper”.

“What’s his name?’

“Brogan”.

“Brogan?” (I ask confusedly)

“Brogan. My husband named him.”

“As in ‘Shoe’?”

“What? No, it’s an Irish diminutive for the name Broderick…Why?”

“No, it’s just, well, that, the uh, diminutive for Broderick would be Brody. Brogan is Gaelic for shoe…like a boot.”

“Not Broderick, as in a king?”

“Nope. Means ‘shoe’.”

Needless to say this conversation ended as you might think, with the conversation stopping dead in the middle, me slinking off and the woman angrily whipping out her cell phone to call her husband. I caught her later in the parking lot as I was trying to sneak over to my car. She apparently had him on the computer looking the word up. Just one of those times when I was really, really hoping for another answer. This does not fare well for that woman’s spouse.

Which just goes to show how names are so ridiculous and out of control in general. For example: there should be a constitutional ban on naming any girl Madison for the next century. They’re everywhere! And what the hell does the name mean? Names should have meanings, don’t you think? And Aidan as a boy’s name is perfectly fine, but couple it with a Polish family background and the last name “Stanislaus” and it just sounds weird. And while we’re at it, no more “creative” spellings of names either. Parents should be shot for that kind of nonsense, really. It doesn’t make your kid cool, or you a hip parent, it makes you a schmuck whom every postal carrier and school teacher is going to hate forever as they rightly well should.

And making up names? Some are fine, whatever, but make sure it doesn’t actually exist somewhere in common spoken language because you can make that sort of mistake with a dog, a cat, or pet horse, but these are your children, people! That means you do the homework. You look that shit up!

I hurried home to double check my information and found that the word Brogan is a rare surname of Gaelic decent, possessed by St. Brogan (as in Daniel Brogan) the scribe to St. Patrick, and is also, or as previously mentioned: a shoe. No King Broderick. Where did this guy come up with that story?

I do hope for the tyke’s sake that his parents give up that King Broderick hooey and stick with the obscure Catholic scribe reference because explaining to people he was named after ankle boots is just damn silly.

So, Slainte, Brogan. I’ll see ya ’round Buster Browns.

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