To the assholes out there who are visibly disappointed when they hear my daughter’s “boring” name: I’m sorry that my wife and I care enough about her that we didn’t name her after an obscure 1920’s comic strip character. I’m sorry we didn’t name her after a doe-eyed indie-film starlet or the character in my wife’s favorite fantasy novel from her childhood. I’m sorry we didn’t give her a name that would preclude her from every career path except prostitution and/or MMA. I’m sorry we didn’t want to saddle nearly every interaction she has for the rest of her life with her dad’s art school quirk or her mom’s obsession with Welsh mythology. I’m sorry her name can’t be twisted into “Dot” or “Pip” or “Miz.”

Here’s the thing: We actually recognize that our daughter is a living, breathing human being—not a toy that we get to play with for 18 years. My wife and I have boring names, so why the fuck would we suddenly name our kid fucking Azreal or Boise? Our thinking is that if she has a simple, pretty name, she can grow into being whoever she wants—she won’t be tattooed with our crushing hipster expectations from the moment she first draws a breath.

Kids aren’t garage bands or funny blog posts or pets. Life is mostly kind of boring and unfair. A kid’s name isn’t going to change that. The rest of you can go on naming your offspring like its some kind of competition. We’ll be taking our daughter to the playground and calling out her boring name with pride.