Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick recently recalled the discussions they had more than 30 years ago when they were expecting their first child. While trying to choose a name for their soon-to-be-born little boy, they didn’t exactly see things eye-to-eye. And now they have some valuable advice for parents-to-be trying to decide on the perfect baby name.
In a new interview with People, while discussing the launch of his podcast, Six Degrees With Kevin Bacon, Bacon shared the story of a narrowly averted baby-naming fiasco. He’d just watched the 1988 movie The Accidental Tourist (based on the novel by Anne Tyler), and as soon as he heard the name of the main character, played by William Hurt, he was smitten.
When my son was going to be born, I had seen this movie called The Accidental Tourist and read the book, and there was this character in it named Macon,” he said. “I said to Kyra, ‘That’s such a great name, Macon. How about Macon for our son’s name?’ She’s like, ‘Yeah, I like that name.’ “
But after sitting with the name for a bit, Bacon said, Sedgwick had a very different reaction: “ ‘Wait a second. Macon Bacon? Are you out of your mind?’ ”
Once they realized that the name Macon wasn’t going to pair well with Bacon, they went for a more classic boy’s name for their firstborn: Travis.
At the heart of Bacon’s funny recollection is a piece of indispensable advice for parents honing their short list of baby names: It’s essential to say all the potential names (first, middle, last!) aloud a few times — before your baby’s name becomes legal. It goes without saying that you should also scan the initials for unintended acronyms, research baby-name meanings, and cycle through any potential nicknames.
In the end, the only thing that matters in choosing a baby name is to make sure you love it — but it’s still a good idea to think through all the things a name might be quietly carrying into the future.
In the end, because Bacon and Sedgwick still loved the name Macon, they named one of the goats on their farm Macon Bacon (which also happens to be the name of a baseball team in Georgia, whose unique mascot was inspired, in part, by Kevin Bacon himself).