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Queen Guinevere Momentarily Dethroned By Princess Brooklynn, Two Ns

Tuesday, 14 January 2014 11:29 Jennifer Devore
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Hazel, Gladys, Dessie, Melvin, Ira and Edgar: all names most notably evoking an elderly relative, correct? What about Madison, Britney, Ashley, Declan, Wyatt and Cody? Too hip, too 2010s zeitgeist? Okay, then how about Nancy, Michele, Shannon, Gregory, Mark and Michael? Like it or not, the hipper your name, the surer its generational adhesion and popular decline; as you age, so will your chic and contempo cognomen. Did Mom & Dad name you in a trend? Enter your name into BabyNameWizard.com's Voyager to check; if you see a Matterhorn-spike, you're a trend, or at least were.

Apropos to Moi, a Jennifer, a recent article on Huffington Post highlights the Matterhorn-spike that was my name. It's my website, my name, so I get to write about me. Hello, Narcissus.

  • Between 1965 and 1985, everyone named their daughter Jennifer, and now, no one does. So Jennifer was officially a Name Fad. What this means for all the Jennifers of the world is that while they've enjoyed spending most of their life so far with a cute, hip, young girl name, they are on their way to having a Your Mom's Friend's Name. A few decades after that, Jennifer can look forward to having an Old Lady Name, which happens when a name belongs to lots of old ladies, but no one under 75.

For you, gentle reader, the name Jennifer evokes whom? Aniston, Lawrence, Hudson, Garner, Saunders, Tilly, Grey, Jason Leigh, Devore? In fact, one of the very first, famous Jennifers was Queen Guinevere, the beauteous yet cuckolding wife of King Arthur. Legendary meanings of the pre-Jennifer sobriquets float from "white fairy" to "fair beauty" and "white ghost" (my fave). Today's more popular "Jennifer", a Franco-Norman derivation, finds its classic origins in the Celtic-Cornish language with "Gwenhwyfar"; this eventually morphed into Guinevere. Already considered old-fashioned and Mumsy by the dawn of the 20thC., the name Guinevere itself was dethroned and gave way in popularity to Jennifer, in the 1930s, and remained one of the top girl's names for the lion's share of the past century. Since then, we fair Gwennys have been riding high and happy the wave of Jennidom ... until now.

Fads ebb and flow, but your name is always yours. The test of how much you love your name, like your wedding ring? Do you still love it? Indeed, do you love it more so, as time goes by? Would you change it? Are you embarrassed by its passing fancy? Or, do you flaunt it proudly, happy to share it with the world, regardless of how thoroughly modern or ghetto-fabulous others' may be?

Yours Truly was almost Amy Clementine, Clemmy for short, Mom tells me. I also recall being pea-green with envy, at the age of five, of a school chum named Chandelier. Happily, like my curls,  I have grown into my name and would not change any of it for the world.

We Jennifers, according to HuffPo, are Your Mom's Friend. To boot, as everybody's Mom, Mother Nature, dictates, we will also be Old Ladies one day. Speaking pour Moi, I am my name and whether I am 8, 22, 37 or beyond, life is Camelot, minus the cuckolding, of course; and as the eternal white ghost, I plan to flit through my days, now and into infinitum with a Jennifer name plate on my Sadie Schwinn and Happy Birthday, Jennifer! painted on my cake with pink icing and pink roses.

Take note, Aubrey, Lindsay, Chelsea and Brooklynn with two Ns; be your name, embrace it and love it, no matter what they say when you hit 80. Not only will you be a Your Mom's Friend one day, you will also be an Old Lady. You, too, Ryder, Ryker, Kyler and Axel. Dig it and don't let the kids laugh at you when you're a professor emeritus at UC Santa Barbara or the oldest bartender in Dublin. See you one day in The Summerland, kittens!

 

Are you a #Jennifer? Share via @JennyPopNet

 

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