G is for Green as a surname (ABCW)

“a medium light hue of greenish gray similar to asparagus, but lighter”

Mr. Green Jeans, Captain Kangaroo, 1960
When Green is your last name, you have heard every joke there is about it. “Mr. Green Jeans,” a character from the Captain Kangaroo children’s show, played by Hugh “Lumpy” Brannum, when I was growing up. Green tambourine, a song by the Lemon Pipers, a #1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 for one week in early February, 1968. “Green, green jelly bean,” whatever THAT is, and others too mundane to repeat.

Kermit the Frog was right: it’s not that easy bein’ Green. “It seems you blend in with so many other ordinary things.”

So when my wife and I were thinking about first names for our now-teenager, among the MANY rules I had was that it could NOT be a SHADE of Green. And there are quite a few of them.

Hunter Green – “a color that is a representation of the color worn by hunters in the 19th century” – terribly out of date, though in fact that there are at least three prominent people named Hunter Greene

Kelly Green – “the name derives from the fact that the surname Kelly, as well as the color green, are both popular in Ireland” – Besides being gender non-specific, my hangup at the time, the Kelly Song from the TV show Cheers was rattling around in my head

Laurel Green -“a medium light hue of greenish gray similar to asparagus, but lighter” – I’m not that fond of asparagus.

Olive Green – “the shade of dark yellow-green found on green olives. It has been commonly used by militaries around the world as a color for uniforms and equipment.” Give peace a chance. Moreover, Olive Oyl is Popeye’s lanky girlfriend.

Paris Green – ranges from pale and vivid blue green to deeper true green. It comes from the inorganic compound copper (II) acetoarsenite and was once a popular pigment in artists’ paints”

For ABC Wednesday

Author: Roger

I'm a librarian. I hear music, even when it's not being played. I used to work at a comic book store, and it still informs my life. I won once on JEOPARDY! - ditto.

10 thoughts on “G is for Green as a surname (ABCW)”

  1. And then there’s “Nile Green” (a common shade in ladies’ clothing and housewares in the 1930s) and “Eau de Nil” – which, to my consternation, are apparently two DIFFERENT shades (“Eau de Nil” is typically more bluish) despite the names almost being translations of each other.

    I guess Nile Green was also popular in the 50s; I remember my mom telling me about a funny malapropism one of her high-school classmates used – the young woman said she wanted a dress for a formal dance in ‘that ‘vile green’ color”

  2. So many shades of green!
    I know ‘Olive Green’
    There’s also ‘Parrot Green’
    Is there a ‘Grass Green’?

    Grass is ‘greener’ on the other side 🙂
    Have a great week!

  3. I taught school for many years and there were quite a few kids who had unusual name combinations. What were those parents thinking? – Margy

  4. I remember Captain Kangaroo and Mr. Green Jeans!
    A few years ago I joined a book club and I met a Bonnie Green, but she was not the Bonnie Green that I worked with years before. Now I have two friends named Bonnie Green!
    Have a wonderful weekend!

  5. May have made a mistake in my data. Sorry Roger! Never heard of Kelly and Paris Green. The ones I use are Olive, Sap, and Oxide (also called Terre Verte).

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