This week, Kat wants to know “the first name you were almost given before your parents decided on the one you have.”
My mother wanted to name each of us William, and my father was adamant that he didn’t want a junior. Actually, I doubt any of us would have had his middle name, Krieger, because there are no Kriegers on either side of the family. The Kriegers were friends of Grandma and Grandpa Holton in Cincinnati. Mr. Krieger died around the time Grandma was expecting Dad, and Mrs. Krieger asked her if she would name him Oscar after her husband. Grandma compromised and made his middle name Krieger. Dad really didn’t like his middle name. In fact, in his high school yearbook, he’s listed as “William Joseph Holton,” much to Grandma’s chagrin.
Mom wanted to name me William, but Dad said no, so I’m named John after my maternal grandfather. She wanted to name my next brother William, but Dad put his foot down, so he’s James, after Mom’s great-grandfather. (He took William as his confirmation name, and his first son’s middle name is William.) My next brother after Jim was the one who came closest to being named William: Dad wasn’t at the hospital when Mom filled out the birth certificate. When Dad got to the hospital and learned what Mom had done, he got hold of the birth certificate and tore it up before it went to City Hall. Instead, he’s Christopher, because Mom liked the name. We call him Kip (among other things), because that’s a pretty standard nickname for Christopher, and evidently either Jim or I called him “Kiptopher” when he came home.
Interesting that none of us were named after Grandpa Holton, Thomas. Both Grandpa and Grandma’s father were John, so I guess that’s why. Grandma had a brother Sylvester who was either stillborn or died very shortly after birth. That might have been interesting…
All of this makes me think of a couple of songs. You know me, everything makes me think of a couple of songs.