I can't explain my obsession, but I do know that others share it, which is comforting. I so appreciate a friend who's willing to discuss name meanings and origins with me, repeatedly, because she's equally as passionate about the subject. I'm a name lover and I know it. What I don't appreciate is those passionate individuals who claim to be name lovers, but are really name haters.
Haters gonna hate...
Name haters love talking about names, but their side of the conversation is about how much they hate most names. The joyful brainstorming session of a name lover is quickly smothered by a laundry list of bad associations and inexplicable distaste from a name hater. Here a few short scripts to better exemplify:
Name Lover: "I'm really into modern names lately, like Mulligan and Gem".
Name Hater: "Seriously?! Yuck. Those aren't even names, they're a golfing reference and the centerpiece of jewelry."
Name Lover: "I'll never stop loving those turn of the century, antique names like Wyatt and Coralie."
Name Hater: "I'll never understand why people like those names. If you're gonna name your son Wyatt, you have to hope that he's good looking kid because teasing will pick on him like crazy."
Name Lover: "I just met a little girl named Vera, I love it. Thoughts?"
Name Hater: "It's not horrible, it's just that I had a really annoying coworker named Vera at my last job. It makes me think of coffee breath and a nasal voice."
There is nothing that will invoke a pleasant reaction from a name hater, except if you reference one of the tiny handful of names that she happens to love. It's a disastrous conversation when the lover and the hater come together on their favorite topic. Well, disastrous for the lover. And yet, a name lover can't easily avoid the conversation because the worst part of name haters is, again, that they think they're name lovers and genuinely love talking about names.
The thing is, name haters aren't always haters across the board. Some of the nicest people I know are name haters. It's weird. I think because it's not necessarily rude to give a blunt opinion on a movie or restaurant, people think the same rules apply to names. But that's not true. Name opinions are personal and much more akin to fashion choices or haircuts. The love of a name speaks to personality and taste.
I love shopping at JCrew (online sales), wearing my hair in a ponytail and classic, but less popular, names. I get a bit peeved when someone disses any of these things. So, if you're suddenly self identifying as a hater - quit it!