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In which Hank discusses the do's and don't's of naming a child. Quick list.

Hank in a Planetarium

1. Say your Baby Name out loud
2. Name your child what you will call your child
3. Test your baby name with native language speakers
4. Don't try to be Cute
5. Check the most popular baby names and avoid them
6. Spell your kid's name like a normal person
7. Name your child a name


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A Bunny
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Good morning, John. In your last video, you were able to quite successfully point out that Ima Hogg and Harry Baals were able to overcome the poor decision-making skills of their parents and become successful people despite their ridiculous names. And maybe Chris P Bacon would never have become a successful composer if it weren't for his ridiculous name, but... you know, it's kind of the job of a parent to, uh, help a child avoid unnecessary anguish. And let's be honest, a bad name can be a source of significant anguish. So for all of you future parents and, most importantly, your children, this is my guide to how to name your baby properly. First: Say it out loud. Say it out loud in every possible permutation. And you might want to run it by a focus group of 12-year-olds. Like, Andrew Peacock's parents never knew, and neither did poor Drew, until that day in fourth grade... this is starting to sound like a limerick. Anyway, punchline: Droopycock. It could have been avoided with a focus group of 12-year-olds saying it out loud. Second: Name your child what you will call your child. This has been a problem for me my entire life. I am Hank; I have always been Hank. My whole life, my parents called me Hank, but they named me William. So whenever I'm at a doctor's office or at the airport, and somebody asks me what my name is, I sit there thinking for a second. And I feel like a doof because this person has just asked me what my name is, and I should know what my name is, and they're hastily adding me to the suspicious flyer list. Third: If you do not speak the language where your child will grow up, get some native language-speakers to come in and help you. Maybe the world wouldn't really be a better place if there were fewer Harry Dongs out there, but it probably would be a better place for those Harry Dongs. Fourth: Stop trying to be cute. I know your name is Silva and you think it's adorable to name your daughter "Sterling" and your son "Hi-Ho". And I'm in this group, too; my last name is Green and I think it'd be adorable to have a daughter named Olive Green. But just don't do it, because some day, Hi-Ho Silva is going to be an adolescent and you don't want him to have another reason to hate you. Five: Check for the top baby names... and avoid them. Names, though you might have forgotten this in all of the excitement, have a utilitarian purpose. They are a unique identifier that you place upon a person so that that person can know when people are talking to or about that person. If your child has the same name as 10% of the people in their social group, I have news for you: You have failed. And don't just assume that if you avoid John and Jennifer, you're all good. Lemme tell ya, those names aren't even in the top 10 anymore. The two top baby names of 2010 were Jacob and Isabella, and there were more Jaydens than there were Johns. Six: Spell like a normal person. I don't understand why parents do this! It doesn't change anything, it just means that in the future, you will have to spell your name every time anyone wants to write down your name. Do not name your child Mykul [Michael], or Kayt [Kate], or Jaucshuwa [Joshua], or Quathyryn [Katherine]! Seventh and last rule: Name your child a freaking name. Do not name your child after a comic book character, or an item of clothing, or a profession, or — most importantly — do not name it after some virtue that they will enjoy all too much rebelling against in their early teens, like Chastity. Okay, and this is the actual final rule: There are no rules. Let's be honest, Harry Baals and Ima Hogg prove that you are not your name and it doesn't really matter. A bad name really probably won't lead to anything except a little bit of extra adolescent angst. And let's be honest, adolescents are gonna find their angst somewhere; they might as well find it in their name. John, I will see you tomorrow. Endscreen. I just got my immunizations from Haiti. The one is Bugs Bunny and the other is Scooby Doo. Ow! I'm going to be in Haiti in, like, a week's time, which means that I'm going to be in Miami in less than a week's time, so if you've not bought your tickets, you should. It's very possible that we won't have any for sale at the door, so you should definitely buy in advance.