Cheryl offers: I’m currently working in Hong Kong. It’s my first trip here and I’m really enjoying the experience. One of the things I’ve noticed in my short stay so far is the naming conventions of the local population. Almost everyone I’ve met has a Western or truly American name. I’ve met young men named Rick, Alan, and Tommy. I’ve met young women named Louise, Maud, and Shirley. I must admit you don’t meet too many young people in the US with those first names any more. The last names are all traditional Chinese like Chen, Wu, or Ming. What I’ve also learned is that almost any English noun or adjective can be a first name. I met a young woman named Milk and another named Purple! These are considered normal names here. So far, I haven’t seen one Courtney, Taylor, or Alyssa. This reminds me of Thomas Freidman’s book; The World Is Flat where he discusses the forces moving us towards a more integrated world. Maybe Gwyneth Paltrow naming her daughter Apple or Nicole Richey naming her son Sparrow weren’t so weird after all. If these children were to visit other parts of the world, like Hong Kong, they would fit right in. Because these celebrities have had the chance to frequently visit outside the US, they likely have a very different view of the world. Maybe… it’s a view we could all learn from.