Friday, March 9, 2012

What's in the Middle?


Just learned that today is Middle Name Pride Day.  Apparently, this is a real thing.  It is Wikipedia-official. 

Well, blog topics don't come along like a gift from the random-holiday-generator-gods often, so I decided to have at it today.

I suppose the idea behind the holiday is to give those of us who are ashamed of our middle names (you Berthas and Miltons and that one girl in middle school whose name was, I kid you not, Zoila Vaca, i.e. "I am the cow") a day to come out of hiding and say yes to your middle name.

I am not one of those people. I sort of love my middle name.  It's Mariam, Hebrew for Maria.  I suppose if my mother had wanted to get full on Aramaic on it I would have been Mariammne, which is very cool, too.

Nearly all the girls in the family have a Maria in their name. Partly it's a Catholic thing.  Partly, it's in honor of my grandmother, Maria Asela.  Lots of Maries and Marias, but I'm the only Mariam (thank you, Mommy!)  Penny's middle name is Maris, or the Latin version of Maria. Why not keep the whole ancient-world-naming trend going?

As for the new baby, she's the first since my grandmother to have the Maria front and center--Mary-Blair.  Americanized, of course.

We've decided not to give her a middle name.  I agree that adding anything else to Mary-Blair Acevedo might be grounds for accusations of child abuse.  But still.  I LOVE middle names.  I may yet cave, and tack on an additional name on the birth certificate.  What the hell. She doesn't HAVE to use it if she doesn't want to. 

Orlando and his brother don't have middle names, either.  I think this is odd.  I like to imagine a middle name for my husband.  It should have been something dramatic. Telenovela-like.  Esteban.  Or Marcos.  For the record, he is perfectly happy being middle nameless. 

What about all of you?  Willing to out your middle names today?  I'd love to her them.  Leave 'em in the comments.

Oh, and while you're here, take a poll!



  1. Not only do I have a middle name I love, it is the name I have ALWAYS GONE BY. The story is that mum picked Emily, and dad said "Yes, that will go nicely with what I have chosen", and then didn't tell her anything else until he walked into the delivery room and said "There's my Kate!".

    Most of my ID has been changed to same Emily Kate (originally, it was all just Kate, because that was my name), but when I started traveling internationally, it became painful to explain to the nice Jordanian customs agent why the name on my traveler's cheques didn't match the name on my passport. I've added the Emily, but my middle name is where it's at. :)

  2. I'm Francesca, which is spelt the Italian way I think.

  3. My middle name is Marie in honor of my Nana. There is a delightful story about how my great uncle picked the name Marie for his baby sister because of a little girl who didn't have fancy dress shoes like the other little girls. He felt bad for her and for some reason naming his baby sister after her made him feel better. It is also my mother's middle name. I love it.

  4. My middle name is Michele and I LOVE it because it's the feminine version of my dad's middle name and it was my grandfather's first name. I also have the same initials as my dad, CMS, and when I got married I tacked the new last name on the end because I didn't want to get rid of that.

    My mom is in the middle nameless camp. When she married my dad, she adopted the first initial of her maiden name as her middle name.

  5. Spring. I was -almost- born on the first day of the season (missed it by two hours), hence the middle name. I was really embarrassed by it as a kid (I actually used to tell my classmates the S. stood for Samantha), but I embraced it sometime in college and started using it for all my social media.

    I say the more names the better, as long as they sound good together. When my brother was born (Cody Austin, named for two random places on the map), I begged my parents to add an Edward in there because that was the name that had been passed down through our family, but my parents aren't the least bit sentimental. To this day, though, when I'm faux-annoyed with my brother I call him "Cody Austin Edward."

    P.S. I think Orlando Esteban sounds FANTASTIC.

  6. My middle name is Elisabeth, after my great aunt. When I was younger, a lot of other girls had Elizabeth as their middle name, and I wanted to change the S in my name to a Z, so it would match the other girls. But as I got older, my friends realized my middle name was spelled with an S and whenever they said my MN they would stress the S. After them doing that for a while, I realized I actually liked it spelled with an S, and I didn't mind being different.

  7. My middle name is Elizabeth and my mom often called me Anne Elizabeth or Annie. Only much later did people say "oh that's so cute - Anne E."

    Funny story - in grad school, my middle name was Elizabeth and at one point there were three other girls in the research group whose middle names were also Elizabeth (Sharon Elizabeth, Rebecca Elizabeth, and Roberta Elizabeth). When the postdoc from the Ukraine's wife had a baby (their third but the first in the U.S.), they named her Nadia Elizabeth. His reason was that every good American girl had the middle name Elizabeth!

    My second middle name is Vivian - which is my maiden name - but that is another story for another day. : )

  8. I think middle names in the USA are more important than in Spanish speaking countries, as the odds are probably quite high of having someone else in the country with your first and last name. Whereas, in Spanish speaking countries you get to have two last names and then there is little chance that your name is on the terrorist list, which is quite convenient if you travel. I think we should institute the two last name rule in the USA. By doing that you also get the bonus of women getting to keep their father's last name even if married. I mean, really, does any woman want to be called Mrs. John Smith. What's up with that?? Women should have identities also.

  9. My middle name is Grace and I couldn't love it more! It's the surname I'm going to publish under when/if I ever finish the book I'm working on. I also have a hyphenated first name and see no problem with also having a middle. However, I have to warn you, computer systems often strip punctuation. In school I was never Jean-Marie, only Jean Marie and everyone either pronounced it french or assumed Marie was my middle name. Having a hyphenated first name, or even just a double first name, and a middle name is not traumatic, I promise.

    And Esteban sounds like the perfect middle name for your husband.

  10. My middle name is Lee. Partly for my great uncle who was rumored to be named Lee in honor of Robert E Lee and partly because my mom liked that "Melissa Lee" rhymes with "Hennessy." I love my middle name and I feel like you can't really know a person unless you also know their middle name.

  11. My middle name is Silvia, which is my mom's first name (Silvia Eugenia), my grandmother's first name (Silvia Aurora), and my great-grandmother's middle name (Angela Silvia). There may have been more Silvia's prior to that, I'll have to check.