It’s easy to come up with a pet name when you haven’t got an actual pet. For instance, you’ll see some white, fluffy Persian and wistfully say, “If that was my cat, I’d name her Cocaine” or whatever other dumb think you think sounds cool.
When I was in my 20s, I had a lot of friends who had pets with cool-sounding names – ones that were designed to show how effortlessly hip or intellectual they were. Hemingway, for instance. Or something stark and awesome, like “X.” I knew a girl back then who had a cat named Bronte for God’s sake.
When I adopted my cat from Animal Care and Control this year, I made a rookie mistake. I let my kid name her.
This is how you wind up with pet names like my co-worker’s old cat, “Moo Moo Corn Fire.” My son named our cat Wonder Woman.
People laugh at this, especially because that’s exactly how we refer to her because there isn’t any way to shorten it. I tried “W” but it reminded me of George W. Bush and I like to avoid politics when it comes to house pets. “Dub” just sounded dumb and “Wondie” sounded like some frat initiation: “Let’s give him a wondie!!” Are there other people out there with pets who have slightly embarrassing or awkward names? I mean, when I walk into the vet and the receptionist says, “Wonder Woman Downs?” she snickers. This probably didn’t happen when Bronte went to the vet.
Somebody give me a suggestion. How do I shorten this cat’s name? Or, really, should I? Wonder Woman IS really awesome after all.
Emma Downs is a Features writer at The Journal Gazette and a new Tall Tails blogger.