Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Celebrity Baby Name Analysis: Ashby O'Dell

I was riding into work this morning via the glorious Chicago Transit Authority, listening to Adam Carolla's podcast to subdue the overwhelming despair that is my life. It's an incredible podcast, by the way. Carolla is a pro. Someone can give him a subject(sunflowers, for example), and he will proceed to bitch about it until he's stopped. Seriously, he can go for 20 minutes. It's incredible. He's slightly racist, severely sexist, and totally unapologetic. He's the best.

Anyway, his radio show was recently cancelled, hence the podcast. The one I was listening to today starred Carolla and his old radio buds, Teresa Strasser and "Bald" Bryan Bishop. I quickly found out that Teresa is pregnant (for the first time) and finally showing! Yayyyyy!!! She then shared a great story about a particularly brutal stretch in her first trimester. 

Here's the exchange. It's too good to paraphrase...

Teresa: However, someone gave me Nancy O'Dell's book...
Carolla: Uh 0h...
Teresa: I was like 'You f&%king c@%t! I hate you! This whole book is about your total lack of pregnancy symptoms! Like, I'm reading it in the tub in the middle of the night because im so f&%king nautious. I'm eating cereal in a tub because I have to eat every second or I'll be throwing up, and her whole book is about how the only things that she noticed was her skin was really glowing and her hair got even more lustrous and fuller! You f&%king bitch, I hate you! I hate you!'

Nancy O'Dell is the beauty queen co-host of Access Hollywood, and her book is called Full of Life. Sounds like a wonderful read. Let's check out O'Dell's background on Wiki, just for esses and geez. Born in South Carolina. Graduated high school in South Carolina. Became a KKG sister and graduated from Clemson, which happens to be in South Carolina. In other words, it's not a coincidence that Nancy O'Dell rhymes with southern belle. 

Her daughter was born sometime last year, and she named her Ashby.

Ashby. Not Ashley. Ashby.

Upon initial analysis, this seems like a really, really stupid choice, yet another celebrity parent who's full of herself and christens her one-of-a-kind, completely unique little miracle with a name that no other person would possibly choose. 

On a side note, we get it, celebrity parents. You're important. We understand that you feel your new babies are more incredible and unique than our babies, which is why you give them incredible and unique names. You name your sons Seven Sirius, Banjo, Free, Rocket, Racer, Rebel, Rogue, Hud, Spec Wildhorse, Kal-el(which is Superman's birth name), and of course, Audio Science. You name your daughters Puma, Sailor, Alcamy, Makena'lei, Moon Unit, Diva Muffin, Little Pixie, Fifi Trixibelle, Peaches Honeyblossom, and Heavenly Hiraani Tiger Lily. It's worth mentioning that all of these names are incredibly real. Google them. They actually exist.

Also, those last four daughter names all came from the same mother. In a freak coincidence, she died of a heroin overdose. Fifi Trixibelle? Really, you dead druggie? Are we naming children or chihuahuas?

So back to Ashby. Comparing it to the names I just listed, it suddenly doesn't seem so bad. In fact, if we dig a little deeper, it might even be genius. For this name to work, we need to assume two things: first, that Ashby will become a good looking child/adult. Second, Ashby will be proud of her name.

If these two conditions hold true, Ashby will have the upper hand in every meeting and first impression she faces. Here's how thousands of conversations will go for her.

Ashby: Hi, I'm Ashby.
Person Who's Never Heard the Name Ashby Before: ...Ashley?
Ashby: (Small, almost indiscernible eye roll) No, it's Ashby. Kind of like Ashley, except not at all.
PWNHtNAB: Oh, I'm so sorry! Here, let me buy you a drink/rose/scarf/Range Rover.

And the upper hand is hers. Nancy O'Dell is a genius.


  1. How about Apple & Mosses (with 3 Ss)

    Course, when your own first name is Gweneth, who are we to quibble?

  2. Are you sure it's Mosses? Everywhere else I look spells it as Moses. But yeah, Apple is a great name. It has inspired me to name my firstborn iTouch, regardless of gender.

  3. Mosses is from wikipedia, so undoubtedly it is wrong.