A Starving contest: Name that boat!

Saturday, February 18: I need an extension!  We’re still agonizing.  Tomorrow …

Friday, February 17:  The last day for names!  Tomorrow, I’ll pick the winner.

Kevin and I don’t have a good track record in the naming department. Our late, lamented cat was named Cat. Most of our chickens don’t have names, and the ones that do named themselves. Our alpha male turkey was Drumstick.

We never got around to naming our first fishing boat, the now-for-sale Eastern, although we referred to it colloquially as the “Ahoy Polloi.” A good name, but stolen from Caddyshack.

Our new boat came with a name: “Dream Catcher.” Which is a perfectly fine name, but it doesn’t quite suit us. Dreams are not what we’re out to catch.

My first thought was to see if I could think of something on the Green Peace model. No, not that Greenpeace, the Green Peace that was a Manhattan storefront bodega on Fifth Avenue somewhere in the twenties, I think. I used to go by it on the bus, and wonder just what happened at the meeting where they decided to call it “Green Peace.”

A while back – could be ten years, could be fifteen – it changed hands. The new owners clearly didn’t think much of the name either. They renamed it, but they were evidently operating on a shoestring budget, so they changed the name to “Green Pea” and painted some stripes over the C and the E on the big green awning over their storefront.

I thought this was genius. They get a groovy new name and an excellent used awning in one fell swoop.  They must have prospered, because the old “Green Pea///” awning disappeared a few years later, replaced by a much classier one with no striped-over letters.

I thought I might be able to try a similar approach with Dream Catcher, whose name is written on the side of the boat in big letters.  

Unfortunately, the best I could come up with is “am cat,” but Kevin and I aren’t morning people and “am cat” would be a crappy name for a boat even if we were.

Back to the drawing board.

Boats are second only to hair salons in their ability to induce their owners to give them silly names with puns. You’d think, having had my hair cut at Shear Glamour my entire childhood, I would have learned a lesson about that, but my fondness for puns clearly trumped my aversion to silly names as Kevin and I tossed out suggestions.

The thing about naming a boat, though, is that there are a few things you have to take into consideration. The reason we never actually named the Eastern the “Ahoy Polloi” was that our friend Linda warned us that we should imagine using the name to call the Coast Guard in an emergency.

It’s also important not to display hubris, so “Nuclear Fishin’ ” was out. Kevin, being a trader, has a soft spot for
“Margin Call,” but you don’t want a name you have to explain. Not everybody knows what it’s like to be “on Margin Call.”

So far, the best we’ve come up with is “Loafs and Fishes,” but I find I’d like to give the boat a name with a little more dignity and, besides, I’m not sure that passes the Coast Guard test.

This is where you come in. Suggest a name. Or two, or seventeen. If we use it, we’ll send you a beautiful jar of our very own hand-made sea salt.

In a way, this is a contest for me, too, because Kevin thinks I won’t be able to bring myself to use a name that we don’t think of ourselves. I’d like to think he’s wrong about that, so please send in names. Lots of names. Good names, bad names, funny names, serious names.

Just do it quick. Kevin has started to call the boat “Dream Catcher,” and I want to nip this thing in the bud.

60 people are having a conversation about “A Starving contest: Name that boat!

  1. Okay- since you have asked for an extension, here’s one more name to consider:
    “CATCHALL” or “CATCH-ALL” – a slight play on words as well as a name incorporating part of “Dream Catcher”
    I certainly don’t envy the position you have gotten yourself into! I’ve been trying to name something for six years with no success yet…

  2. what about ‘edward? Edward is a suitably dignified English name with some nice background, and then at sea you are ‘eadward often looking for the heads.

  3. You should call it “The Laestrygonian” …mainly so people would have to look it up, and then you could be all, “omg, I can’t believe you didn’t know those were the giant cannibals from Homer’s Odyssey! Duh!” I would never get tired of doing that.

  4. If you rename the boat, you have to christen it complete with champagne bottle smashing on the bow. Just sayin’
    That said, a walk around any marina will reveal the number of absolute dimwits who name boats. When I was in Oak Bluffs last year there were no fewer than four boats there named “Bada Bing.” Seriously. Also, “Big Boyz Toyz,” “Sea Saw” and “Irish Buoys.” You really have little to worry about.
    I like the idea of a personal name, or one with meaning. Maybe Kevin could name it after you??? Lady Tamar? Or the Tamar (insert middle name here)? OK you’ll probably hate that.

  5. How about ‘Our Boat’ or ‘Fish Catcher’ – seems in line with all previous naming attempts!! Or could you just scrub out the cher at the end to go down the Sweet Pea route, and just opt for Dream Cat?! x

  6. I’m so bad at names. Lee is too. It took him two weeks after he got his puppy to name her and that was only because I came up with the name.

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