I was thinking similar in a conversation with my friend last night, and from a post I made to the recent blog about celebrity names - I think by and large, not all celebrities are good looking, but many of them are. I think the attitude is the main thing. They likely go through the same process as anyone else choosing a name. I don’t think they always think about the pressure to choose something exotic or weird, like it’s expected of them. They have preferences, just like the rest of us, and criteria. They’re not following a formula - a lot of their choices seem to “go with” their persona, and seem typical for who they are, and obviously some don’t take the time to hear how the name sounds out loud - shows how much they know what they’re doing, right?! They are variably calculated, as in some more than others, and probably have more meaning to them than appears.
What sets them apart, and thus a lot of the names they choose, is their attitude. It takes a lot of attitude and thinking outside the box to become famous… er, maybe it’s sometimes luck, but I think they might just not think inside the same conventional rules the rest of us boring normals do, who stick to a narrow field of safety and don’t want our neighbors to laugh at us - for what car we drive, how we dress, what kind of coffee we drink. So if the celebrity likes a name, poof, they’re probably going to see no good reason why they shouldn’t use it - it goes against their whole way of being and doing and succeeding. They have the means to send their children to private school, and keep them in elite circles, so they really aren’t going to be teased as much, or have trouble finding a job when they’re older. They will be raised with the same kind of attitude their parents have. [name]Even[/name] if they are naming their children [name]Violet[/name] or [name]Ava[/name], nobody else is doing it, feeling at ease making an unpopular choice because they just love the name, rather than feel they are taking a big risk nobody will like it. And of course once they’ve done it, we [name]LOVE[/name] it.
Where this boils down into the rest of us - the stars really are some people many of us look up to, how to dress, how to be, what music do they like, what else do they endorse? If they can name their kid Lovelypants McJohnzen, they are just too cool to care! I want to be too cool to care! At least some of the time, you see direct copies of the name, as if its use has somehow legitimized this as a name. In other cases, regular people might just get ideas from it. A lot of what celebrities do is because of their attitude, which is different from a conservative population of regular people. There’s a reason the phrase is “regular Joes”. Middle class people try to boost themselves or their children up a little by copying names chosen by higher class folks, “in the know,” and these choices sometimes seem weird to their peers, and sometimes they just absorb the lesson - we’re all doing this now. Keeping up with the Joneses. Not all names go down from the top elite among us, but in the demographic for the celebrity who just named their child something odd, you might get ideas, you might take that as permission.
I don’t think it has anything to do with looking better than the rest of us, because honestly, a lot of them look sort of average - like the Willises for example. I am trying to think hard about whether celebrities really did too much to break barriers before [name]Rumer[/name] [name]Willis[/name] was born, unless one was a rock star, like [name]Frank[/name] Zappa in particular, or [name]Bob[/name] Geldof. I think all the Beatles’ children had normal names. [name]Zak[/name] is kind of new-fangled but not too crazy. [name]Stella[/name]. ? Someone may have better examples that predate [name]Rumer[/name].
Good topic. I love thinking about this stuff.