A New York City couple has turned to the internet for help in deciding their son’s name. The dispute has turned into a battle of signatures, as the father-to-be, Nicholas Soukeras, insists on naming the boy Spyridon, after his father.
“I don’t want to call my son something I can’t even pronounce,” the flustered mom-to-be said, who is a native of Belarus.
Countering, dad noted that “(my) wife is a native of the Republic of Belarus and has been exposed to such barbaric names as Arman, Osip, Igor, Rurik, Ruslan, Artem, Vadim and Zoran (to name a few) throughout her Soviet childhood,” according to the tongue in cheek text he wrote in his online petition which he hopes will get 100,000 names.
“(My wife )has not been afforded the time nor opportunity to accept the quite common and well-received name “Spyridon” in not only Greek communities, but in the United States as well. Had President Nixon resigned a mere ten months earlier, in fact, the 38th President of the United States would have been Spyridon Theodoros Agnew, rather than Gerald Rudolph Ford, Jr. Additionally, the current President of Russia, Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin, can claim that his paternal grandfather, Spyridon Ivanovich Putin (1879-1965), was the personal chef to Vladimir Ilyich Lenin himself. The point here being, the name has been held by the highest and most honored officials and patriots of both the U.S. and the former Soviet Union,” the petition statement reads.
Nicholas also argues that his wife’s “Russian ear” is simply not trained “for the sweet, musical sounds of our Greek nomenclature”.
Although the online petition is seen by both as a joke— the naming of their newborn has been a serious matter, according to an interview in The New York Post. “The argument is serious — it’s not a joke,” Kseniya confirmed.
“I’ll settle for 100,000 (signatures) — this is an approximate population of my hometown Maladzyechna,” said Kseniya, who is due in August and who favors the name Michael, to honor her late father.
But Nicholas has two things working against his odds. First, the petition, despite the attention it has received in the local New York media, has less than 2,000 names at the time of this story’s writing. And second issue: the couple don’t even know if their newborn will be a boy.
“But my husband is convinced,” Kseniya said. “He thinks he’s a psychic . . . he thinks he can see through the belly.”
Photo: The New York Post