Friday, December 4, 2015

A Boy Named Sue

I have considered changing my name. This is a maybe/someday thing. But just in case, I already have all the paperwork done and all I need to do is file at the court house.  When and if I get up enough nerve.  I am fearless but that is a big step. My plan would be to keep my middle name and just change the first name, which I never use to my feminine name, Rhonda.  People will still use the middle name, as always, and it would simplify identification.  Professionally I have always used my first initial, and middle name.  The downside, this is a big complicated step that involves changes at many levels.   I will keep you posted.

We all remember the  Johnny Cash hit "A Boy Named Sue" song.  It was written by the  author/poet/cartoonist Shel Silverstein. " I wrote about Shel a few month back not knowing about the song.  I guess it is likely that Shel being ambiguous enough, had undergone some teasing as a child, so the song.  After more research I found that his song was inspired by his friend Jean Shepherd, the author of A Christmas Story, who was teased as a boy because of his own feminine-sounding name.

So what is in a name - There are some unisex names out there: Jesse, Jamie, Tracy, Jackie, Kelly, etc. But here are ten gentlemen whose names are downright girly. (I'm not including those who purposefully gave themselves female names like Alice Cooper or Marilyn Manson.)

While doing some research, I Googled “famous men with feminine names”  and some very interesting names came up.

  • LESLIE NIELSEN, actor. "Leslie" can be unisex name too. At least it used to be.

  • LINDSAY BUCKINGHAM, singer/songwriter. Best known as guitarist and male vocalist of the musical group Fleetwood Mac from 1975 to 1987. Another unisex name once, but not by this star's generation.

  • CAROLL O'CONNOR, actor. Star of Archie Bunker or would anyone like to challenge Carroll Shelby, automotive designer, racing driver and entrepreneur.

  • MEREDITH WILSON, composer/playwright. What is odd about Wilson, best known as the writer, composer and lyricist of The Music Man and The Unsinkable Molly Brown, is that his given name was Robert, but he preferred to work under his middle name. My plan.

  • EVELYN WAUGH, novelist. Can a guy's name be any more ladylike? In centuries past, Evelyn was not an uncommon name for Englishmen, but by 1903, his parents should have known better.

  • DANA CARVY, actor and stand-up comedian. Known for his work as a cast member on Saturday Night Live.

  • SANDY KOUFAX, baseball player. The legendary pitcher for the Dodgers (both in Brooklyn and in Los Angeles) was born Sanford Koufax, and his nickname was fairly common at the time.

  • ABBIE HOFFMAN, activist. The outspoken radical who was arrested during the 1968 Democratic Convention as one of the "Chicago Seven" was born with the unusual name Abbot.

  • STACY KEACH, actor. Tough guy movie star is mostly remembered for starring in the short-lived 1980s TV series Mike Hammer.

  • Any more you can think of?     


  1. I went to high school with a guy we always called Butch, he was a wide receiver on the football team. I finally had a class with him my senior year. Turned out his first name was Marion just like John Wayne's real name. He took a little kidding but just let it roll of his back. He was a good guy.

  2. You must have done a lot of homework to compile that list Rhonda!