Dad Life 1 – Yoshifusa
Posted On 01/04/2021
I’m not very good at picking names. Whenever I play games and have to name my characters or teams, I just come up with the least clever, most boring ideas.
So you can imagine how much fun I must’ve had spending hours and hours trying to come up with names for our little baby Yoshi.
Naming that elf mage might be difficult, but we’re talking about naming a human being here!
On top of that, Kokoro and I needed to establish a couple of rules before choosing a name, so it was even more added pressure.
Since our families come from completely different backgrounds, we wanted to try to make everyone happy since this was going to be both of our parents’ first grandchild.
Oof, no pressure, right?
Make sure everyone can pronounce the name, make sure everyone can spell it…one of after another we kept adding more and more criteria.
HOW TO PICK? I remembered way back in middle school learning about the art movement called ‘dadaism’. I absolutely HATED art class (because I was oh so terrible at it), but I somehow still remember this story – maybe because it has more to do with history than me drawing or painting something.
Anyway, the reason I bring this up is because according to one version of the story, the origin of the name ‘dadaism’ comes from one of the artists opening the dictionary at random and picking the first word that came up – ‘dada’ in this case.
Should we also google a random name generator and just pick one of the options? Well, I’m kidding, but sure enough it wouldn’t be the first time that someone did that.
Joking aside, we actually wanted the baby name to be meaningful and not some random name that we think ‘sounds cool’ or ‘looks cool’.
Also, since I love history so much (see my random memory about arts class) my first thought was obviously: ‘Hey, let’s go with a historical name!’
A couple of summers ago I was reading a book on Japanese history and I remember coming across a name that stuck with me ever since – oof is this like that arts class all over again? Anyway, the name? Yoshifusa. He was one of the early influential members of the famous Fujiwara clan in Japan and I can’t explain it why, but there was just something about that name that sounded so great.
But ugh, I just said we wouldn’t pick a name just because we might think it ‘sounds cool’. Well, I did still try to lobby for it – for several weeks even! But eventually I had to listen to reason, since Kokoro was completely against it and would have none of my nonsense. Apparently the name was ‘too old-fashioned’, pfft my own name is even older than that.
Well, at the end of the day I still won a small victory since you can now guess why he is baby Yoshi in Tabunkazoku. Also, one final fun fact: remember all those criteria I mentioned earlier about picking a name? One of them was to make sure that the baby’s name can also be spelled in Kanji. Why? Kokoro’s name is spelled out in Hiragana, mine in Katakana, and our baby’s in Kanji, a trifecta of Japanese writing systems!