Stretch and Sage
In late February, Ryan and I moved in with my parents in their luxury townhouse. We brought with us our pets, including our orange cat, Stench. Now Stench is fourteen years old… and for fourteen years he has gone by his name… “Stench”.
Shortly after we moved in, my mother decided she didn’t like the name “Stench”. She started calling him “Stretch”. Not only that, she started enforcing her new nomenclature on everyone else. So we would have conversations such as this one:
Vicky: Is Stench outside?
Mom: You mean Stretch!
This irked me. I didn’t name the cat, so I’m not particularly vested in “Stench”. It has no emotional significance to me. But the cat has had his name for fourteen years…nearly a decade and a half. For goodness sake, he already has an established Flickr tag. Do we really need to rename him this late in the game?
Laid-back Ryan wasn’t phased by the name change one bit… which prompted this conversation:
Vicky: Oh yeah? Well what if she doesn’t like the baby’s name?!? Is she just going to rename him too?
Ryan: Don’t be ridiculous, sweetie.
At our twenty week ultrasound, Ryan and I found out the sex of our baby and shortly afterwards we decided on the name. We were diligently keeping the name to ourselves, but one day driving to my grandmother’s, my mother implored us to share our secret with her. “I really want to know the name,” she said. So we told her… and guess what! She didn’t hate it!!! I was so relieved.
Vicky: Oh good! There were people on the Internet who said they would never name their baby Sagan because it is only one letter away from Satan.
Gah! I said that! Me! I planted that seed.
All seemed well and then a week or so later I was eating breakfast in the kitchen when my mother dropped this line on me:
Mom: I’ve been telling everyone that I’m going to call him “Sage”. The more I think about it the more I don’t like “Sagan”.
Two things stuck out to me. First off, I noted she started with “I’ve been telling everyone” which indicated our secret wasn’t so secret anymore. Secondly, I noted that she did in fact, change the name of our unborn son.
What turned my mother’s opinion of “Sagan”? One of the reasons she cited was “It is too close to Satan.” Me and my big mouth!
Luckily now Sagan is born and the birth certificate has been filled out, we are seeing a great deal more acceptance of his name.
There doesn’t seem to be any hope for “Stench” though. 🙂