Playing The Name Game

Published in the July 2018 Issue July 2018 Feature By Brady L. Kay

If you see me walking around my neighborhood it’s a safe bet my truck must have broken down because I’ve never been much of what you might call a “recreational walker.” However, I’ve actually refused a golf cart ride on a scorching hot day at a marina because I enjoy walking the docks. What’s the difference? I love to look at houseboats of all shapes, sizes, ages, etc. Blame it on my day job but marinas have always intrigued me and one of my favorite things to look for on these dock strolls are creative and clever boat names. Seas the Day, AquaholicHappy Ours and Serenity are quite popular and have been regulars on top of boat name lists for years, but it’s the ones that make me laugh – or make me extremely curious about their owners – that I enjoy most.

For example, would you ever name your houseboat Bow Movement or Helmroid? Whoa, those offer a lot more information than I care to know. How about the message the captain of Eat, Drink and Re-marry sends. If he’s single (or about to be) I would think prospective female first mates wouldn’t find this boat name nearly as amusing as he does.

There are some names that I would call more realistic. LackamoolahA-Loan Again, Dual Income and What College Fund? are some good examples. Names like Kid’s Inheritance III could go either way. It’s up for debate whether their kids are in line to inherit a houseboat that is nicer than the previous two or the parents are letting it be known that if there was any money leftover for an inheritance it’s clearly gone now.

One of my favorites that I admit is not very original, but still kind of fun is The Office. I just always thought it would be fun to tell people that I “Have to go to The Office this weekend,” but it’s probably one of those boat names that would feel less and less amusing as the years go by.

I don’t know if there’s a right or wrong way to go about coming up with a name for your houseboat. My suggestion is to develop a list of possibilities with those closest to you and see what they have to say. Some people think it’s best to solicit input from everyone, but from experience that typically leads to longer lists and probably more opinions than you really want. It’s your boat so pick a name that has a special meaning to you and don’t try to please everyone. I’ve heard many owners admit they had a harder time coming up with a boat name than a name for their child so don’t rush it. We featured a family who took years to agree on a name but in the long run it was worth the wait because it’s a name they all love with a story behind it. Keep your eye out for The Great Debate when you’re boating in Texas.  

I like creativity, but I also have an appreciation for reality. The name of the boat, type of boat and captain all ought to mesh. You wouldn’t name a cockapoo puppy Duke or Brutus, so you probably shouldn’t name your $900K houseboat The Poverty Hut.

At the end of the day, the name you pick will be the name you have to live with so choose wisely. Post your houseboat name on our Facebook page so we can help others who might need a little help selecting a good one.

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