NPR names

Porn actors and drag performers use stage names instead of their real names, and their porn names and drag names are usually chosen for their connotations: porn names in gay porn are hypermasculine, names of drag queens are elaborately feminine. Porn names in gay porn often convey specific personas (preppy, cowboy/country, etc.), and many project toughness or aggression (last names like Stryker and Panther, for example); some details here. Drag queens’ names are very often playful — punning, alliterating, rhyming, alluding to the names of famous people, and so on — and quite often are suggestive (Trixie Dick and Ophelia Dick, for example).

Eventually, people began to devise formulas for generating porn names and drag names, involving your childhood pet’s name (a female pet, for a drag name), your mother’s maiden name, the name of the street you lived on as a child, and similar items, in various combinations. Mother’s maiden name + street name is the formula I’m most familiar with; for me, that produces Rice Highland (not a bad pseudonym), and for a gay couple I know it yields the excellent Chase Palm and Johnson Kincade, but sometimes it leads to laughable names, like Liebowitz 59th and Castro The Alameda de las Pulgas.

Now the blogger Liana Maeby has devised a scheme for generating “NPR names”:

Eric and I recently discovered a shared fascination with the slew of impossibly named NPR hosts we listen to every day: Renee Montagne, Steve Inskeep, Corey Flintoff, Korva Coleman, Kai Ryssdal, Dina Temple-Raston.

In fact, we’ve often wondered what it would be like to be one of them.  A Nina Totenberg or a Renita Jablonski.  A David Kestenbaum or a Lakshmi Singh.  Even (on our most ambitious days) a Cherry Glaser or a Sylvia Poggioli.

So finally, after years of Fresh Air sign-off ambitions, we came up with a system for creating our own NPR Names.  Here’s how it works: You take your middle initial and insert it somewhere into your first name.  Then you add on the smallest foreign town you’ve ever visited.

So I’m Liarna Kassel.  And Eric is Jeric Bath.  I even have a new nickname for my little brother in Dylsan Rosarita.

And I’m Marnold [or Arnmold] Und. Though it’s not easy to decide which place is the smallest foreign town I’ve visited.

(Hat tip to Joe Clark.)

2 Responses to “NPR names”

  1. Pseudonyms « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] 6.  Rice Highland [my drag name] […]

  2. NPR names « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] (Earlier posting on NPR names here.) […]

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