Hard Rock-A-Bye Baby

4 comments April 3rd, 2007at 05:51pm Posted by Eli

I’m not entirely sure how to react to this…

Metallica may work as a name for a heavy metal band, but a Swedish couple is struggling to convince authorities it’s also suitable for a baby girl.

Sweden’s tax agency rejected Michael and Karolina Tomaro’s application to name their 6-month-old daughter after the legendary rock band.

”It suits her,” Karolina Tomaro, 27, said Tuesday of the name. ”She’s decisive and she knows what she wants.”

Although little Metallica has already been baptized, the Swedish National Tax Board refused to register the name, saying it was associated with both the rock group and the word ”metal.”

In Sweden, parents must get the names of their children approved by the tax authority, which is in charge of the population registry and issues personal identification numbers, similar to Social Security numbers in the United States.

Tomaro, who has appealed the decision, said the official handling the case also called the name ”ugly.”

The couple was backed by the County Administrative Court in Goteborg, which ruled on March 13 that there was no reason to block the name. It also noted that there already is a woman in Sweden with Metallica as a middle name.

On the one hand, I think they should have the right to name their kid whatever they want, as long as it’s not offensive.

On the other hand, it always makes me uneasy when parents use their kid’s name to make some kind of statement about themselves (no, I do not believe that a six-month-old baby is likely to be demonstrating any specifically Metallica-like personality traits other than loudness). It’s the height of vanity, and it’s unfair to the kid. I would also note that considering their fiercely overprotective litigiousness, Metallica is probably the last band you would want to name your kid after, unless you’re a gazillionaire who really likes getting sued.

Perhaps as a compromise, the parents could promise to pay any expenses incurred if the unimaginable occurs, and “Metallica” decides that she wants to change her name…

Entry Filed under: Weirdness


  • 1. kyklops  |  April 3rd, 2007 at 9:28 pm

    Eli, please keep us posted on this one. If the name is accepted by the authorities I want to be the first one to download her and share her with my friends!

  • 2. Eli  |  April 3rd, 2007 at 9:37 pm

    Dude, that is just not right.

  • 3. Interrobang  |  April 3rd, 2007 at 10:23 pm

    You just know things like this are happening all over the United States and Canada (in fact, drop in on one of those websites devoted to future mothers and eavesdrop on one of the threads devoted to baby naming, or, if you’re like me and overt tools of the patriarchy give you the hives, check out someplace like this), but since we don’t have naming authorities, it seldom makes the news.

    I still think the best piece of advice Ann Landers ever gave was, if you’re considering naming a kid something, go to the back door and yell it several times at the top of your lungs. If you get embarrassed, don’t name the kid that. On the other hand, if you’re 27 and you have cotton candy between your ears such that naming your artifact child after a has-been heavy metal band seems like a good idea at the time to you, there’s probably no hope.

  • 4. Eli  |  April 3rd, 2007 at 10:31 pm

    I keep thinking of the SNL sketch with Nicolas Cage, where his wife is suggesting baby names, and he keeps shooting each one down with possible ways that other kids might make fun of it – even mundane names like “Bob” or “John”.

    Then the doorbell rings, and it’s a delivery guy with a package for “Asswipe Johnson.”

    Cage angrily replies, “It’s pronounced ‘Azz-WEE-pay’!”

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