Sunday, January 29, 2017

What's In a Name?

With the purchase of the new boat came the discussion about what to name her.  The old name was "Pursuit," which I was OK with but the other half of the purchase thought the name too intense and serious, not to mention how much she enjoys playing with the boat lettering tool on the BoatUS Boat Graphics site.

Picking a boat name is tough.  Let's go back to my last boat to see how that name came about.  My daughter is ever the reluctant boater.  For a teenage girl, spending the night on a small boat in tight quarters with her parents is akin to cruel and unusual punishment.

In order to get her to join us with as little guff as possible we made an agreement to play the Pokemon card game on the boat with her.  After playing the game and learning about various "water-type" Pokemon with cute names, my wife thought it would be fun to name the boat after a water-type Pokemon, and thus Poliwhirl was born.

With the new boat, I did not want to go down the Pokemon route and decided instead to scroll through the countless boat name suggestions on the Internet.  After looking at few thousand names, I started leaning toward boat names that were related to music, the occupation of both my wife and I (education), or ancient Indonesian gods and goddesses.

The short list I started creating ended up like this:

Hall Pass
Job Site
Maybe Later
Forty-Two
Sun Dog
Summer School
School Skipper
School's Out
Recess
Homework
Semara
Ramble On
Rain Song
Black Dog
Tangerine

After much deliberation, we settled on the name "Ramble On," one of my all-time favorite Led Zeppelin songs that I thought fit a boat very well with its notion of travel and adventure.

So there you have it, Ramble On was born.  Alas, as these things go, Ramble On is not a truly unique name.  In fact, soon after deciding on the name, I found a boat of the exact model as ours with the same name, also in the Chesapeake Bay.  I was somewhat dejected by the discovery but ultimately I really like the name, the song, and the band, enough that I'm not going to pick another name.

After picking the name and while peeling the old name off our boat, I saw another boat (pictured above) with the name "The Dave" and a picture of a dog.  This was truly one of the coolest boat names and picture combinations I've seen in a while.  I almost considered copying the idea and using my dog, Rutus as the inspiration.  But the graphic was already ordered and as my daughter said, Rutus, a pug, would make for an ugly picture on the transom.

Pictures of the new boat with lettering attached will be forthcoming.  I plan to go down to the boat again in February to put the lettering on before she is launched.