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Monday, April 18, 2011

Baby Naming Issue: Tucker Rhymes With, Um....

Allyson writes:
I was wondering if you could do a poll on the boy's name Tucker. While I know it obviously rhymes with, um, that word, I know my mind didn't go there. Or if it did, it was more like a quick visit than a long stay. Meanwhile, other people I've mentioned the name to immediately say "it's cute, but it rhymes with *ucker." What are your thoughts? Is a boy named Tucker doomed to endless taunting of "Tucker the *ucker"?

Thanks!

Good question! I've wondered this myself. Not only about The Word, but also about the less-severe word "sucker." Let's have a poll, over to the right. [Poll closed; see results below.]

28 comments:

Ms. Key said...

I've only ever met one little boy named Tucker, and it just felt so much like His Name that I honest to goodness NEVER thought this or made the connection.

Many names rhyme with swears or not nice words... but more often than not, a person doesn't really deal with anyone calling them those names. Or, if someone does call them that, it's childish playground nonsense (AND, if you're worried about the "f" word, most little ones one the playground won't know to go there with it).

For me, I don't think THAT would be enough not to name a child Tucker if it was a name someone liked.

Linda said...

My mind IMMEDIATELY goes to the other word, just like with Cooper-Pooper.

Allison said...

I was in a work situation where I had to write the name Tucker infrequently over a long period of time. What I noticed is that it wasn't unusual for me to "cross the T" just automatically. It was awkward. My mind didn't "go there"---and yet my handwriting did, and there was no fixing it.

kanah said...

I have always liked the name Tucker and have never thought about it in reference to the F word. Honestly, there's a way to make fun of just about every name, and most kids outgrow that phase pretty fast. I vote use it!

MelissaInk Designs said...

Tucker rhyming with the f-word is a deal breaker for me.

Also, I think (at an older age) the drag queen tradition of "tucking" also comes to mind ... as well as -er being easily replaced with -her and going that route. I know a guy with the last name Sacker and Sack Her was a common, umm, compliment during his late teens.

Tucker, IMO, has far worse playground implications than Cooper (after all, everyone poops).

Sarah said...

You know, it's an adorable name. Hands down. And I wouldn't let too many teasing situations dissuade me from a name I loved. BUT. . .

Yeah, unless I really, really loved the name, I'd rule it out since the rhyming association is pretty rude. It's not like "Graham" turning into a cracker reference. It's a little more than that. So, I guess I'd avoid it. Unless it's THE name. Then go for it and devil be damned.

kimma said...

I definitely think its too risky to inflict this name on your son. Growing up is hard enough.

Lauren said...

I always liked the name Tucker, but then began to think of it the same way MelissaInk Deisgns was thinking, in the drag queen way. Are there other names similar to Tucker that maybe don't put bad images into peoples heads?

d e v a n said...

I never even thought of it until I read this.

Tara said...

I would never have thought of that!

I don't think it would become a problem until he was a teenage. I know teenage boys swear at each other jokingly, so someone might happen to say 'Tucker your a f**ker'. That's where the problem would begin!

But now you are thinking about this, maybe it's not worth using. Do you think that once he is born you will think of that word when you say his name?

If you aren't 100% settled on the name, and you think you could choose a new one, I think you should.

Maybe you could even use Tucker for a future pet?

:-)

Erin said...

i know tucker & have always liked the name and have NEVER considered that connection. interesting...

Frondly said...

I've heard people talking about this problem with the name Huck. As someone who grew up with an easily mockable last name, I don't know. . . when I was younger it was humiliating, and when I was older it was irritating. I guess I wouldn't risk it. (But for the record, I DIDN'T instantly think of that when I saw the name Tucker.)

Janelle said...

I'm with Allison on writing the name. Tucker is such a great-sounding name, but oh, the problems that could come when that poor child begins to learn handwriting. Cursive Ts and Fs can look awfully similar (at least when kids are first learning) and to me, that's enough.

christine said...

I don't think Tucker will have problems wit *ucker until his teen years. In fact, a friend and I remembered our elementary music teacher Mrs. Aspray the other day and marveled at how no one made fun of her name. I mean it was rigt there, and somehow we 12 year olds were too busy butchering song lyrics to notice.

Without the association, it is an awfully cute name.

Crafty Beth said...

I wouldn't have thought of it, BUT...my 3-year-old loves to sing the name game, and we've had some giggles when he sings it to his toys--"Duck, duck, bo buck, banana fanna fo..." yeah, you see where I'm going. Do other kids sing this song, or is it just mine?

Patricia said...

Tucker is a cute nickname. I know a young man named Walter (his dad's name too), but always called Tucker. I have no idea why, nor do I know if he was teased with the F-word. I *did* think of that possible teasing when I heard that's what his parents were calling him. I wouldn't take that chance for a son and wouldn't use the name because of that. I just looked up the name and found that "The first name [Tucker] is derived from the surname, itself from the medieval job title for a 'fuller' who spins and works with woolen cloth."

beyond said...

My mind went to the less offensive sucker first. Of course, when I think of it it's clear that Tucker rhymes with %ucker. Most kids will get teased no matter what their name is.
Very cute name, though.

Megan said...

This is my husband's absolute favorite name and I like it too - but have wondered about this . . . interesting to read the comments. I think that we will go ahead and use it. And Allyson, if you love it, go for it. Kids always find a way to tease. I think that if this was a very unusual name it may be a bigger deal but it is a real, used for some time kind of traditional name. So my first thought is 'cute name' not the other words.

Megan said...

Oh! On a similar note, I read Tuck Everlasting as a middle schooler and you would have figured for sure some middle school guy would make that connection, but nobody did.

Allyson said...

Thanks for the comments, everyone! Interesting that some people immediately make the bad word connection and others don't. My fiance loves this name and I really like it as well...and it's SO much better than some of the other names he loves...like Remington. I think the point is kids will make fun of any name, some are just more of a stretch than others.

Frazzled Mom said...

I never made the connection between Tucker and the other two words. Tucker was my cat's name when we adopted her, but we changed it to Pepper. Our decision to change her name had nothing to do with any associated words, but rather because I thought the name was too masculine for a girl cat.

Frazzled Mom said...

Oh - my Father-in-law wanted to name my husband Brentwood, with the nickname Woody. I find Woody a lot more unfortunate name for a boy than Tucker. Luckily, my Mother-in-law won out and my husband's name is Robert.

LFO said...

Hmm, a woman I work with whose last name is Rucker had the unfortunate nickname of "Firstname Rucker, Backseat *ucker" during high school. It wouldn't have immediately come to MY mind, but it may immediately come to the mind a high schooler.

Anonymous said...

Allyson, are we married to the same person? My husband also brought up Remington. Or Hunter. Or Colt. Ummmm . . . . Do we see a theme?

Allyson said...

@Anonymous- maybe! Although I like Colt. Barrett is also on this list. He likes Kimber for a girl. Boys and their guns...See why Tucker is a perfectly lovely option?

Anonymous said...

Tucker in on my top contender if i ever have a little boy. It is so cute!! I had a friend named Tucker in highschool and I never made the association.

Susan said...

I had a cat named Tucker for 18 years and never once thought of that connection. However, if I were considering naming my son Tucker, I'd be more concerned about whether OTHER people made that connection than whether I did. After reading the comments to this post and seeing the poll, I think I'd choose another name.

For one thing, the association -- when it's made -- is a particularly bad one. It's one thing to be Dirk the Jerk ... worse to be Bart the Fart ... but particularly embarrassing to have a name that rhymes with F*****.

Secondly, I don't think it's true at all that ALL names are equally prone to teasing. Of course, if a child is determined to tease, they can think of SOMETHING for any name. But some names are almost a set-up.

Erin said...

I taught 3rd grade for years and had one adorable little student named Tucker. He really was a darling, until the day when he gleefully announced to the class what words his name rhymed with. I was horrified. Nope, couldn't use that name.