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  • Kate 23:56 on 2013/01/06 Permalink | Reply  

    Interesting list of strange baby names registered in Quebec in 2012.

    • Robert J 01:16 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      Also, Quebec has some of the strictest laws around for name changes. Crazy.

    • Clément 06:45 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      Fascinating how some parents preemptively punish their children with weird names.
      Will Freud have issues? Will Hertz ever be able to rent a car at Avis? Will Innocente ever commit a crime? Will Lazer require eye surgery? What if Cebast doesn’t like fish? Do you think daddy has certain expectations after naming his son Bruce-Willis or Chris-Tough?

      I applauded a few years ago when the registre did not allow parents to name their kid Spatule, but it seems they have relaxed their rules.

    • Ian 07:27 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      Hannibal and Geronimo are legit names, just foreign.

    • Kevin 08:55 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      My only beef is with people who go with deliberately messed up spelling for a name. The-Eau? Olyviah?
      If you’re going to use the name, go with the customary spelling.

      And that’s the only complaint I’m ever allowed to make about this, since my youngest is, so far as I can tell, the only person with her name in the province. (And she will be telling people her whole life that she really does have three syllables in her name, not the two they are used to hearing in the more common variation)

    • Kate 09:24 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      Yeah. As someone with a slight variation on a common enough surname, I’ve spent my whole life stopping people filling out paperwork – “no, it isn’t spelled like the hamburgers” – so I know that the little frisson of spelling a name “Olyviah” will have to be paid for in years of “oh, ell, igrec, v, ee, ah, ash” for the poor kid.

      It’s the teachers I feel for, too, getting rosters of kids with these new names. Of course forename fashions change (où sont les Omer et Sarto d’antan?) but the latest trend is pretty out there.

      Clément: that’s very funny. I especially like Chris-Tough. With a name like that he’ll have to be gay.

    • jeather 09:53 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      For some reason, Steeve is very common (and I know a Steve who has people spell his name Steeve occasionally).

      I just have the angloest name among anglo names, and it’s full of j/g, which is lots of fun. (Although I did once figure out that someone learned French before English because when he was copying my name down from something written he confirmed that it was spelled with a “zhee”.)

    • Tux 10:34 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      My first name is:
      1) Fairly uncommon
      2) Sounds like another, much more common name
      3) Is spelled uncommonly (people who don’t get my name wrong right off the bat usually spell it wrong)
      4) Is apparently impossible to pronounce for francophones (until they’ve heard it about 100 times)

      And my last name is a homonym in both languages… school was hell. Adulthood is a bit better… I’m commonly called by the more common name, even at my workplace where I’ve been for 5 years… I just respond to it now. And now that I’m out of school my last name gets the occasional joke, but I’ve got about a million comebacks now after years of practice.

    • Dmacaul 11:12 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      I’m sure Hungarians will be delighted to hear their spelling of Eszter is considered one of the most bizarre names in Quebec

    • Kate 12:00 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      No offense intended, Dmacaul. But a spelling that’s normal in one place can be a little off-kilter in another.

    • jeather 13:21 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      Given that they didn’t include other names that are weird in English or French but not in other languages, I assume that the writer didn’t know that Eszter is a standard spelling elsewhere.

    • david m 14:08 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      very weird and annoying discussion. i can imagine some calgary blog talking about all these idiots naming their children “pierre” and “francois.” complaining about different names or spellings is like ranting about “why can’t they just our food?” or “why do they have to wear different clothes?” the thinking of cranks and left behinds.

    • RaoulDuke 14:30 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      david m, that analogy doesn’t hold water and you know it. Perhaps the authors showed some cultural insensitivity with Ezster, Geronimo or Hannibal, but as for the rest of the “names” they are an unbridled celebration of ignorance, illiteracy and stupidity. And it’s the kids who will suffer, not the dimwit parents.

    • C_Erb 19:07 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      My name (Chris) was the most common English name of the 1980s. I had to go through 12 years of school surrounded by dozens of other people with my name (it got to the point where I only responded to my last name). Now, I live somewhere where my name is much less common but am now cursed with the fact that my name is now a swear word in Quebecois French.

    • Kate 22:07 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      The Quebec trend just mirrors a general North American trend, that’s partly what’s interesting about it. Du calme, david m.

      C_Erb, that’s very funny.

  • Kate 23:50 on 2013/01/06 Permalink | Reply  

    Odd item about how Saint-Léonard wants residents to chop down their horse chestnut trees.

    • Ian 07:28 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      Ah nature, with its unsightly …chestnuts

    • Kate 09:26 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      I like those trees – they’re not native but we’ve had them here a long time – and the flowers are really pretty in springtime.

    • Stefan 09:53 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      The chestnut tree gives the best shade of all trees (at least of the ones in moderate climate) because it has so many layers of large leaves. Here in Austria every self-respecting beer garden has at least one (usually >100 years old).
      As children we used to collect the chestnuts (also to construct little animals with tooth-picks).

      Apparently, it can also be seen as waste, which needs to be removed at once (and at great cost) to re-expose the beauty of crewcut residential lawns and asphalted sidewalks. I guess it is a question of trying to fight nature vs. adaptation.

    • Ian 10:58 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      For sure they’re very attractive trees, and besides maples there’s not a lot of trees in the city that get that big and provide that kind of foliage. Sure, the chestnuts get everywhere, but so what? Are we going to tear out all the fruit trees because their fruit falls on the ground? This is absurd.

    • Chris 20:21 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      But the nuts can fall and damage cars! That’s more important!!

    • Kevin 08:12 on 2013/01/08 Permalink

      Bah! Chestnuts are padded and won’t cause any damage to anything hard they hit.

    • David 16:13 on 2013/01/11 Permalink

      I feel that not enough citizens are making a big deal out of this. I am a resident in the area and I find the city’s policy absolutely appalling. I really wish the Gazette would cover this…

  • admin 17:17 on 2013/01/06 Permalink | Reply  

    Urgences-santé workers held a demo Sunday to put pressure on the health ministry for negotiations.

    • Bert 19:16 on 2013/01/06 Permalink

      SRC also said that they were not calling ahead to hospitals before showing up. This causes delays in admitting them, slowing both U.S. operations as well as the hospitals.

  • admin 17:16 on 2013/01/06 Permalink | Reply  

    Snow clearance from the big storm on the 27th is nearly complete but is on pause while more snow falls.

  • Kate 13:55 on 2013/01/06 Permalink | Reply  

    Regular reader Ian has a blog feature showing the variety of Montreal graffiti with some comments, plus a link to an extensive Google Plus gallery.

    • denpanosekai 14:18 on 2013/01/06 Permalink

      Most of that stuff is cool art. However there’s been a rash of residential property vandalism in the Concordia Ghetto / Chinatown 2, especially from this guy Noser. Seeing new tags pop up daily on my favourite restaurants and historical buildings fucking pisses me off. Betcha many owners don’t bother with the city’s free removal service because they know they’re just gonna get hit harder. Broken Windows Theory in full effect.

    • Ian 15:12 on 2013/01/06 Permalink

      Thanks for the shout-out, Kate. I’m not really all that interested in the art vs. vandalism debate; suffice to say that I take pictures of the work I find visually compelling. While I recognize that homeowners and small businesses shouldn’t get hit, it’s all part of the urban visual texture and broken windows theory aside, a city without graffiti has an antiseptic soullessness that I fail to see the charm of.

    • Stefan 16:56 on 2013/01/06 Permalink

      what an exceptional documentation of the continually changing outdoor exhibition montreal’s graffiti forms. with this, not all will be lost in time. the location metadata in the photos (if present) could even serve to view the history of graffitis when walking by a wall through a smartphone app.

  • Kate 10:24 on 2013/01/06 Permalink | Reply  

    The NHL lockout may be reaching its end with a tentative deal between the league and the players. Bar owners at least may be relieved if it holds.

    • Faiz Imam 12:11 on 2013/01/06 Permalink

      No game tickets or merch for me, but I intend to spend as many nights out watching the game at bars as possible.

    • jeather 12:13 on 2013/01/06 Permalink

      I sort of enjoyed the lack of hockey.

    • Kate 13:23 on 2013/01/06 Permalink

      So did I. I didn’t miss the manufactured drama.

    • Ian 15:14 on 2013/01/06 Permalink

      I bet you guys would miss it more if you worked in bars. ‘Sayin. There’s a lot of peripheral workers in this city that suffer from a lack of hockey, and manufactured drama aside it’s part of our cultural identity.

    • Kate 15:17 on 2013/01/06 Permalink

      True about bar work, I wouldn’t doubt it. I just found myself not missing it, and whenever I’d see things about failed negotiations I’d be like “Oh yeah, there used to be hockey, didn’t there.”

      I admit one evening I was walking down Ste-Catherine on a Saturday and it crossed my mind that there might’ve been more buzz in the street had a game been about to start down at the Bell Centre.

    • jeather 16:04 on 2013/01/06 Permalink

      I’m not saying that other people don’t miss it. I’m not saying they shouldn’t miss it, whether it is because it increases their pay or because they just like it. I agree that it’s part of our identity. I just didn’t miss it, and was possibly relieved not to have it. But a 48 game season sounds like a nice length.

    • Kevin 08:58 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      I’m just going to kick back and laugh at all the addicts.

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