"Avatar" apparently spawning a kid-naming boomlet

I’ve not seen the movie “Avatar” and I likely won’t see it in the theaters. As good as the movie may be – and there’s no question it’s great, technically, but perhaps not in terms of plotline – I’m a bit dismayed at the reported surge in parents deciding to name their kids after characters and terms in the movie. From The Sun:

MOVIE fans are rushing to name their babies after characters in sci-fi smash Avatar.

Choices include Neytiri – after the film’s Na’vi warrior-princess – and giant flying creature Toruk.

Another favourite is Pandora, name of the blockbuster flick’s fictional planet.

Pandora is tipped as top choice among US fans, with UK parents set to follow.

Seriously? You’re going to name your son, your precious child, “Toruk?” And when, in school, they’re going over where their names came from and what they mean, your little tyke is going to get up and say he’s named after a tiger-striped, pterodactyl-shaped, Hollywood-induced fictional flying lizard? You know, ’cause Mom & Dad were swooning over a film umpty-some years ago and thought it’d be sooooooooooo cooooooooool if they named their kid after it?

And not to get all Ivy league on anyone, but have these people never heard of Pandora before? Meaning: the millennia-old Greek myth? The woman who managed to open the container (box, jar, whatever) that contained all the evils in the world and set them free to run around in it? Yeah, that’s going to play well in school.

Folks, names have great import and their effects are felt most and longest by the people who bear the name, not the people who bestow them. Offering up your kid as a homage to a Hollywood flick that will be passe in 5 years, obsolete and well surpassed in 10, is self-indulgent not clever. Give the kids a break and leave the Na’vi to the movie screen.

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