Monday, September 10, 2012

Hurricane Names

Where do the names for hurricanes come from?  I know you have wondered the same thing, so I have looked it up for all of us.  Here is an article from the National Weather Service that answers the question. Further information and the list of retired names can be seen here.

My first thought after reading that was, what a waste to use the same names every six years! There are so many names out there, why not bring fresh ones in each year?  My second thought was, what counts as a devastating storm?  I could never put a number on devastation, thus becoming another reason why there shouldn't be any repetition in name usage.  I like the use of the alphabet and that they switch between male and female names (one year the A name will be male and the next year it will be female).  Using the computer to pick random names for each storm would be a much more fun result for me as a name lover than using the same list every six years.

That being said, are there any names on the lists that you love (or not love) for a storm?  I was contemplating which names would make a ferocious storm sound ferocious.  I love Bertha, Earl, Hector, Kirk and Pilar as storm names.  Hurricanes with the names Grace, Henri, Madeline, Nadine, and William may not make me rush for cover as they should.  Although, in looking at the names that have been retired due to the severity of the storm, you may see how the storm could make the name.  I'm not sure I would have been afraid of Katrina or Isabel before they become such horrible hurricanes.  But Hugo definitely has the looming sound of a bad storm.

So, what names would be appropriate for a hurricane?  There can't be a storm-appropriate name for each hurricane due to the amount, but this thought did make me look up names with relevant meanings.  Tempest and Gale are obvious ones.  Thor is a fun one (means thunder).  But besides that, unless you go into foreign languages for names that translate into storm, there isn't much out there.

There is a huge trend to name children after weather or nature-related things.  Sticking with just weather, I took the challenge to think of a weather name for each letter of the alphabet.  Here's what I came up with:

Jet (as in Jet Stream)
Youg (had to reach far for this one, it's a hot wind during an unsettled summer in the Mediterranean)

I encourage you to comment with weather names that you like!  Also, are there any names not on the National Weather Service list that you think would be perfect hurricane names?

On a personal note, notice the names listed under the Eastern North Pacific for the year 2014.  Hurricane Rachel would be followed by Hurricane Simon.  I can vouch for the validity of those two as storm names.  They reek havoc in my house on a daily basis.  :)


1 comment:

  1. I think those weather names sound like characters on My Little Pony. :) Also, have you watched Veep on HBO? There is an episode where the VP finds out her name, Selina, is a hurricane name and has her staff work to have it removed. Too funny.
    I agree that names with sweet/pleasant meanings shouldn't be used. Hurricane Grace or Hope doesn't exactly strike fear or imply dangerous conditions.


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