Monday, August 10, 2009

Five Years Ago: You Helped Us Name Our Baby

Nearly five years ago, we turned to you, the Franklin Avenue readers, for help in naming our first child. It was a success. We ultimately made the final call, but only after auditioning several picks through you, and narrowing them down to three finalists.

We decided to avoid the whole blog/reality competition idea this time. But as we get close to the birth of Blogger Baby 2.0, I thought we'd briefly walk down memory lane to see how we named the Blogger Baby Original Recipe. Here's a shortened version of a December 2004 post that recapped our "Who Wants to Name Our Baby?" campaign:

EPISODE ONE (Sept. 6): The call went out in early September. Help us name our baby! The responses were... different. Early entries included Milo, Matthew, Trent, Kerrison, Aaron, Efram, Sander, Max, Joshua, Evan, Christopher, Cooper, Bailey, Miles, Patrick, Drew, Collin, Reece, Mason, Stephen, William, Phillip, Christian, Jamison, Kiran and Bart.

Then there was the jokester who came up with this list : Twista Schneider, Q-Tip Schneider, Fabolous Schneider, Sisqo Schneider, Phinias J. Schneider. J. Pierpont Schneider, Les Schneider, Lloyd Schneider, Rupert Schneider and Zippy Schneider.

EPISODE TWO (Sept. 14): We narrowed the suggestions down to the top ten. The initial picks: Alexander, Anderson, Austin, Colin, Dylan, Evan, Jackson, Matthew, Ryan and Quinn.

EPISODE THREE (Sept. 21): In our first elimination, readers said no to Quinn. But in a surprise turn of events, we also let Colin go, ahead of schedule. The decision to eliminate two came after reader Paul pointed out that Colin sounded too much like "colon":

I don't care how hot Colin Farrell may be today, but in the 6th grade, your boy Colin becomes "Colon" the minute those little bastards learn what that means, and he'll be "Ass" for the remainder of his school days. You guys may have to transfer him to a new district to get away from all of the taunting. Kids are so cruel.

With Colin out, we had to fill the void with a new name: Tyler. Also, due to the unfortunate realization that a kid named "Jackson Michael Schneider" would get the inevitable child molester jokes, we shortened the nominee to "Jack."

Remaining: Alexander, Anderson, Austin, Dylan, Evan, Jack, Matthew, Ryan and Tyler Michael Schneider.

EPISODE FOUR (Sept. 27): Probably the tightest week of competition. But eliminated: Anderson. People didn't hate Anderson, they were just pretty ambivalent about it:

Remaining: Alexander, Austin, Dylan, Evan, Jack, Matthew, Ryan and Tyler Michael Schneider.

EPISODE FIVE (Oct. 5): We mixed things up again, eliminating two names this time: Dylan -- which I always thought reminded me too much of Luke Perry, much to Maria's chagrin -- and Austin. Some comments that led us to kick two off:

Austin's got to go. The name seems very OC to me for some reason, very suburban, very bland and yet also bratty. I picture Austin running around kicking adults in the shins and laughing.

Remaining: Alexander, Evan, Jack, Matthew, Ryan and Tyler Michael Schneider.

EPISODE SIX (Oct. 12): People just didn't care for Tyler, which got the boot.

Remaining: Alexander, Evan, Jack, Matthew and Ryan Michael Schneider.

EPISODE SEVEN (Oct. 25): After clinging to life for several weeks, Jack finally got the boot. One opinion:

I know I'm late to the game, but howz about we get rid of Jack, because it is a little too four-years-ago-trendy and Alex reminds me of some chumpy know-it-all.

We also continued asking for replacement names, to perhaps add to the pot. Alas, although we were flooded with suggestions, none were quite right: Perry, Nico, Charlie, Damon, Terrence, Paul, etc. Nice names, but none felt right for us.

Remaining: Alexander, Evan, Matthew and Ryan Michael Schneider.

EPISODE EIGHT (Nov. 15): We took a few weeks off to focus on planning and executing Mike & Maria's Halloween Housewarming Race, but returned with a shocker: Out was Alexander, replaced by new candidate Nathan.

Remaining: Evan, Matthew, Nathan and Ryan Michael Schneider.

EPISODE NINE (Dec. 3): After another break -- this time for Thanksgiving -- the contest was back, and with another shocker. Having been dumped last time, Alexander was back -- and Nathan was banished after a brief tryout.

The outcry had been enormous after we canned Alexander. And even we wondered why we'd done it in such haste.

Also gone: Matthew. "Matthew Michael" seemed like such a mouthful.

Of course, we wound up going with Evan, as you know. Stay tuned for Blogger Baby 2.0 news!

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