There’s an entertaining thread on the Mark Radcliffe show at the moment. He’s playing that game that we’ve all done where you create a name from certain elements, and the name is then your porn star name or somesuch. My porn star name (my first pet plus the street name of my first address) is pretty good – Sandy Belding – but ‘er indoors has a perfect one: Mitzi Nansen. On the Radcliffe show they’ve invented your West Indian cricketer name, which is the surname of the US president in the year of your birth plus the last seaside town you visited. This would yield Eisenhower St Annes in my case, but St Annes is a cheat because I live there, so I’m going for Eisenhower Formby, a tricky left arm spinner methinks. Someone on the show had Nixon Whitby, which is perfect – a classic fast bowler name – and there are going to be lots of youngsters who could have names like Clinton Scarborough and Reagan Cromer. Radcliffe also suggested your Star Wars name, which would be the first car you owned followed by the name of any medication you’re on, which yields not much in my case as I’m not on medication – yet – but I could cheat and go for Austin Optrex. I can’t compete, however with the fabulous example on the show – Wartburg Anusol!

CC BY-SA 4.0 What’s in a name? by Dr Rob Spence is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.