Billboard Baby

A Local Couple Have Offered the Naming Rights to Their Newborn Son for $500K. Savvy or Sick?

MARTIN ROBERTS
Age Over 21
Resides Queens
Occupation Teacher

What do you think of these parents? Everything is a brand now, so why shouldn't your child bear one or be one? This story reminds me of the one about the British couple who adopted their baby off the Internet.

If you were paid to pick a new name for yourself, what would it be? I just read a story about how outraged Hindu nationalists are over the fact that George W. Bush's cat is called India. There's been a call for Indian citizens to all name their puppies George W. Bush. I think I'd be willing to be renamed Greenpeace.

What or who would you refuse to be named after? Microsoft, or any of the corporations involved in globalization.


CESSY LIMA
Age 30
Resides Manhattan
Occupation Stylist

What do you think of these parents? I think they're nuts. To put a child in the position of having to respond to some company name like Banana Republic is too much. Can you imagine someone yelling "Hey, Banana" on the playground?

If you were paid to pick a new name for yourself, what would it be? I've been thinking about opening a salon called Big, so I would be happy to take that as my new name. It's a kind of positive affirmation, and it's kind of snobby. You have to think big to get big.

What or who would you refuse to be named after? You couldn't pay me enough to rename myself GeorgeWBush.com. Recently, the Brazilian version of Saturday Night Live changed its format. Now its entire hour is devoted to making fun of Bush.


JENNIFER NELMS
Age 20
Resides Bronx
Occupation Mother

What do you think of these parents? I think it's cool. For $500K, I'd let someone name my baby, and I had a baby only 13 days ago. They could name her, and I'd call her whatever I wanted to. If she came home and cried because people were teasing her on the playground, I'd just tell her she had a big bank account.

If you were paid to pick a new name for yourself, what would it be? Essence, after the magazine.

What or who would you refuse to be named after? I would never agree to be renamed Mrs. Ass, regardless of how much money you paid me.


MOUSUMI
Age 32
Resides Manhattan
Occupation Nurse-midwife

What do you think of these parents? I think the whole thing is hideous. These are people who shouldn't reproduce.

If you were paid to pick a new name for yourself, what would it be? I'd choose to be named after Thich Nhat Hanh, a Vietnamese Zen Buddhist. He should be president of the United States.

What or who would you refuse to be named after? I'd refuse to be renamed Henry Kissinger.


DAVID CURCIO
Age 23
Resides Staten Island
Occupation Law student

What do you think of these parents? It's different, and it catches you off guard. I know that I myself would have had a problem if I'd been named Starbucks Coffee.

If you were paid to pick a new name for yourself, what would it be? I might consider being renamed TheYankeesWin!.com for a couple million dollars.

What or who would you refuse to be named after? I have no specific problems with corporations, but I'd never agree to anything racist or demeaning to any religious group.


PATRICK HAMMOND
Age 30
Resides Manhattan
Occupation Caterer

What do you think of these parents? People will do anything for money. I hope that child will resent it when he realizes he's been named after Kinko's, but everyone complains about their name at some point. When I was 10 years old, I hated my name.

If you were paid to pick a new name for yourself, what would it be? Under pressure, I might agree to be renamed Ernest Hemingway.

What or who would you refuse to be named after? I'd refuse them all. I don't even like to wear clothes with logos.


DANNY RUIZ
Age 30
Resides Manhattan
Occupation Computer graphics

What do you think of these parents? I think they're taking advantage of that child and making a fool out of him. You couldn't pay me enough money to let some stranger name my son PeanutButter&Jelly. PeanutButter&Jelly Ruiz?

If you were paid to pick a new name for yourself, what would it be? It would have to be someone from Marvel Comics. I'd say Wolverine from the X-Men.

What or who would you refuse to be named after? Rudolph Giuliani. Not even for $20 million would I agree to take his name.

 
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