What’s in a name?

This+year%27s+field+of+oddities.
This year's field of oddities.

This year's field of oddities.

This year's field of oddities.

Danny Brooks, Staff Writer

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Unique names have been around for as long as there’s been a convention to break. Everyone is familiar with a few common oddities, such as vowel displacement in regular names to create unusual spellings. While names like Kevyn and Alik may be abnormal, I’m here to discuss the truly confusing of the naming world.

Since 1983, Name of the Year has been collecting, voting on, and crowning the strangest of the strange. Founded at an unnamed Ivy League school, NOTY is both forged in greatness and truly a democratic expression of the people. Every year, conveniently around the time of March Madness, the NOTY committee releases a bracket of the top 64 names they have collected over the course of the year. From there, it is up to the people to decide on a winner. The voting options change every few days while they whittle down the competitors, until eventually a lone name is crowned champion.

The bracket itself is divided into four “regions,” each named after a noteworthy previous winner. Each region is seeded 1 through 16, with the 1 seed being the committee’s favorite to advance to the top 4. This year we had Kobe Buffalomeat as the 1 seed in the Bulltron region, Marmaduke Trebilcock as the top seed in the Sithole region, Chardonnay Pantastico as number one in the Dragonwagon region, and Quindarious Monday as the top dog in the Chrotchtangle region. That probably sounded like a lot of ridiculous mumbo jumbo, but all of those were in fact real people, as verified by the NOTY committee. So while it may seem difficult to believe 2001’s winner in Tokyo Sexwale (not pronounced that way) is a real person, he was in fact a prominent figure in the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa.

Voting for this year’s winner is still ongoing, although it is almost at its end. We have two matchups left before the final vote opens up, and this year’s final four are YourMajesty Lumpkins vs. Marmaduke Trebilcock and Andy Brandy Casagrande IV vs. Boats Botes. Clearly they have only gotten here by being entertaining, hilarious names, but along the way we had to say goodbye to some very entertaining ones. Sultan McDoom, Dougal Spork, Dick Posthumus, Alpha McMath, and Le’Genius Wisdom Williams all faced defeat at the hands of superior names. Among some students here at East Lake, Kobe Buffalomeat seemed to be a strong favorite, but fell in the top 8 to YourMajesty Lumpkins.

Name of the Year is one of the more peculiar yearly traditions, but is always good for a few laughs when you see what ridiculous names cropped up this year, or to look back on the winners of yester-year, such as Pope McCorkle III or Amanda Miranda Panda. If it really interests you, voting is open to anyone and everyone. However, participation can be done in other ways, such as naming future generations. I look forward to River Streams Brooks being able to compete in a future bracket.

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