Anyone whose name is Sarah can attest to the fact that Sarah is a very common name. Not that we’re complaining. On our team, we have Sarah Michelle Gellar and Sarah Jessica Parker, who are both strong representatives of the name, but there’s a reason our fellow teammates use their middle names: Sarah is a little boring!
That’s why I’ve gone by Sarah Jo for most of my life. It started in elementary school when Sarah after Sarah moved to my town, and I learned that the name Sarah wasn’t so special even though it means ‘princess’ in Hebrew. So I kept my middle moniker through high school and college as a way to help my teachers separate me from the other Sarahs in my classes. But even Sarah Jo isn’t as special as I sometimes want it to be. I mean, I met half a dozen Sarah Jos in college, and let’s face it, it sounds a bit country.
Maybe it’s the Jo. It’s redeemed by Jo in Louisa May Alcott‘s Little Women, because Jo was pretty strong. But it’s sorta common, too, at least in my circle: Amy Jo (my college roommate), Vicky Jo (my mom), Martha Jo (my mother-in-law), and Hannah Jo (my niece).
Sometimes you just need a change. I found the Random Renamer at BabyNames.com today. (No, I’m not pregnant. I went to the site because it was referenced on NPR and I was bored.) I entered my name and gender and selected a personality type, and the Renamer gave me these new names based on the personality type selected:
- Stylish Jia Kuniko Austin
- Traditional Milan London Austin
- Wild Oona Ayanna Austin
- Creative Eirlys Fleur Austin
- Natural Mirah More Austin
- Quiet Evadne Satya Austin
- Friendly Uta Qing Austin
- Philosophical Zara Quasar Austin
- Ambitious Ciqala Justine Austin
I was bit sad that they didn’t have a personality type for abrasive. I was once called that by a customer at Applebee’s, and it’s always stuck with me, so I’ve created my own name for that personality type:
- Abrasive Harmony Oklahoma Austin
Harmony makes you think I’m a nice person at first, but then you realize that Oklahoma makes me a little bad ass. I’ve had the name sitting in my back pocket for a while, and I thought it was time to break it out. Get out of the way, Sarah Michelle and Sarah Jessica, Sarah Jo “Harmony Oklahoma” Austin is in town!
“Proper names are poetry in the raw. Like all poetry they are untranslatable.” — W. H. Auden