This blog has been remiss in not covering the latest baby name data from the Social Security Administration. This blog has been remiss somewhat out of laziness but also somewhat out of shame and anger. The name Patrick, you see, has resumed its fall.
My first name has declined or held even in popularity every year since 1994, the end of a glorious decades in 30s or 40s on the baby-name list. After holding about even the past couple years, at a sad 129, the name has begun falling anew — down to 143 in 2011.
The last time Patrick was this unpopular as a first name was 1925. Calvin Coolidge was president. The Scopes Monkey Trial occurred. The New Yorker published its first issue. Pittsburgh beat Washington in the World Series, proving most definitively just how long ago 1925 was.
The 143rd spot is not the lowest Patrick has been. His worst showing came in 1919 at position 166. The teens and early 1920s were by far Patrick’s worst time. Googling, I wasn’t able to figure out why Patrick might have fared particularly poorly during this era. But some Patrick probably did something.
Fifteen names just above Patrick on the popularity list these days: Victor, Jesse, Jaxson, Elias, Damian, Preston, Caden, Brady, Maxwell, Joel, Axel, Santiago, Alejandro, Jake, Ivan.
The one that annoys me most is Axel.
Some good news from the new report? Cooper as a first name has finally stopped rising. It’s dropped from 75 to 82 in the last year. It’s still ahead of Patrick, instead of in last-name territory, where it rightfully belongs. But change comes slowly. Patrick is waiting, plotting, readying for its return.