The Poorest of Choices

I’m watching Women’s Olympic Volleyball, and the United States’ star player is named Destinee Hooker. She’s an athletic black woman with a howitzer for a right arm and the lateral quickness to cover ground like tarp on rain delay. She’s our country’s Four-Square All-Squarican in volleyball. Yet despite these accolades, I know I’m not the only one who notices her incredible name.

I, along with presumably many others, am baffled by her parents’ choice of a first name for their daughter. Now, I have no insight into the circumstances of this decision of their’s, but no matter the situation I cannot fathom how they landed where they did.

Let’s imagine that my last name is Hooker. It would be a fine last name, but I would certainly understand that it has a second connotation. If one does a quick search in Urban Dictionary’s thesaurus, one will find the top three synonyms are “whore, slut, and prostitute.” Obviously your name is arbitrary and is no indication of the person you are, but the second meaning is out there.

Now, let’s say I have a daughter, knowing that my last name is Hooker. I would definitely name her something that wouldn’t exacerbate the aforementioned issue. Hermione maybe. Or Gretchen. Those would be terrible stripper names; I imagine Gretchen would break her glasses, and Hermione would annoy the shit out of you talking about Ancient Runes. However, if one does a quick Google search for “most common stripper names,” one finds “Destiny” at #2, trailing Candy and ahead of Star. Even with this in consideration, Destinee would be an acceptable name in most situations (maybe not my cup of tea, but who am I). But not if your last name is Hooker. I mean, if you have to go with a stripper name, at least make it Chastity.

Obviously the Destinee Hooker I’m watching dominate these Turkish scrubs is not a hooker or a prostitute. She’s a successful athlete competing for the US at the highest level, so clearly it didn’t work out too terribly. But if you’re the parents, why run the risk? At the very least, the school playground would have been murder. Destiny Hooker? You’re just asking for it.

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