Monday, August 2, 2010

Ptomaine’s House of Beef

When you're writing a story, there are many times when you'll have to come up with a fictitious name for a product or place of business. To me, names are important. Some connote class, others bring to mind frivolity. Still others are descriptive, scary, mundane, exotic, or just plain ridiculous.

I always think hard when I make up names in my books.

If only people in real life took as much care.

Here are a few examples of product/place names that I thought were, uh, interesting:

Stumpy's (a stump removal service)

Prunelax (a laxative, in case you couldn't guess)

Jiffy Lube Live (concert pavilion)

And here's one of the most misguided marketing slogans I've ever seen, from a restaurant touting the freshness of its food:

"Any fresher, and you'd need a restraining order."

Well, sure, what restaurateur wouldn't want potential customers associating their establishment with stalkers and domestic disputes?



Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

I think these folks should hire us to come up with some names for them! :)

Elspeth Futcher said...

I'll meet you for lunch at my favourite restaurant "Sam 'n Ella's".

Alan Orloff said...

Elizabeth - They could use some help, that's for sure. I mean, what were they thinking?

Elspeth - I know that place! Isn't Ecolai the maitre-D?

Patricia Stoltey said...

Elspeth and Alan -- lame...but I laughed out loud anyway.

I'm always curious about people who name places like The Drunken Monkey -- one found here in Northern Colorado. I just found this funny name site


Dorte H said...

Oh, I like Elizabeth´s suggestion.

Like you, I think about names and spend much time selecting perfect names for characters, settings etc. Today I was searcing for the perfect name for a snobbish woman´s horse. My daughter suggested I checked what Queen Elizabeth´s horses were called, and that gave me the idea of ´Balmoral´. What a pity she only has one horse, because ´Windsor´ would be such a perfect partner.

Terry Odell said...

I have to agree with Elspeth. That's one of my favorites.

Jane Kennedy Sutton said...

I think names are important, too. I needed the late night (for me) laugh I got from your examples.