Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A House by any name...

I live in an older neighborhood and it's not uncommon to see a National Historic Register plaque on a home with the year it was built....and I'll admit it, I'm always a little envious of the NHR plaques.  I could get one, but you have to jump through hoops that The Man established, and I'm not much into The Man. I also dislike the DMV for the same reasons, cause The Man works there, usually in the form of an angry state employee named Bertha.

Anyway, those NHR plaques make me a little green with envy--until this morning.  I walked past two houses that were named.  One was called "Maison Soleil" (Sun House) and the other was called, "Plum Cottage."

Now I've always felt that houses with names not only reeked with pretension, but are usually owned by people who are the movers and shakers of the world.  Case in point:  The White House.  Buckingham Palace.  Falling Water (designed and named by Frank Lloyd Wright,) Monticello (Thomas Jefferson,)  Turkey Hill (Martha Stewart.)

However, after seeing these houses, I've changed my mind.  Clearly these were just two little homes with loving owners who wanted to give their dwellings some character instead of a street address.

The problem is--how does one go about naming a house? Is there a tutorial? Maybe it's not much different than naming a child. However, I don't usually sound like a snob when I introduce my kids.  Conversely, when you say in a clipped accent, "Oh DO come round to Maison Soleil, won't you?"  All of the sudden life seems like an episode of Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.

Champagne wishes/caviar dreams, anyone?

On the other hand, why not name my house?  I have a name--a few of them in fact, not including the aliases I use while robbing banks--I call my car, "Stupid." My garage, "Le Shack."  My bathroom sink even has a name, it's called, "This Piece Of Crap."

I think my house is feeling left out.

It's been called "345" for far too long.

Instead of  "Plum Cottage" I could call it "Plum Crazy." Or "Maison de la Lune" for the mooning I always get from the small one running from the bathroom to his room after a shower.  Slightly less interesting would be, "Mountain Man Camp" or, "Villa Square Tooth."

Or maybe...I'll just call it Todd.

Does your house have a name?  Do you have suggestions  for my house?  Should I hold a house naming contest?  
The winner could get taped recording of me imitating Robin Leech, the host of Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.  That's a cool prize, right?? 


  1. I totally think you should name your house! Most of the houses that I've seen with names are just really cute homes. I don't think it's pretentious. That prize is AWESOME.

  2. Melissa, you make me laugh!!! It's like that NPR show that gives away Carl Castle recording your answering machine message... :)

  3. I like the name Todd, and I think it would suit any house well. Oh, maybe Stanley...

  4. Matthew aka Scott--that's "Chez Husk" to you.

  5. I laughed when you called your sink, "this piece of crap". That what I call the stained stock carpet in my house.

  6. Definitely name your house. I might have to come up with one for mine ... a home by any other name is still filled with crazy people who love you, right?

  7. My house is called the Bungalow, my parents-the cottage, and the Townhouse respectively, my brother's-the shack and the Ranch... I call my sister's the Plaza and my other sister's place the Box. It really does look like just a box from the outside front. Not very creative, I admit, but it started with naming the 'shack' and just followed that line for the rest. Yours, I'm thinking 'House of Many Pillars' or 'Shtëpia e Shtyllat Shumë' in Albanian.

  8. Jennifer--cool "Shtepia e Shtyllat Shume"...I like that!
    Cathy, yes, a home by any other name is still filled with crazy people who love me...hmmm...there may be something there. :)