I’d kinda been waiting around for some confirmation on the rumors, but since no one’s denied them in the last few weeks, I may as well let y’all know that Natalie Portman and her thousand-footed husband, Benjamin Millepied, have named their baby Aleph.
For all you Hebrew school dropouts and never-beens, “Aleph” may sound like “Alex” pronounced with a mouthful of socks. However, “Aleph” is the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet (also known as the aleph-bet—isn’t that fun?)
So basically this is the same thing as naming the child “A”. Which is kind of cool, especially if Nat and Ben actually meant this as a tribute to Fonzie (“Ayyyyyy…”)
Or maybe the motive is more esoteric than that. In the mystical practice of Kabbalah, the letter Aleph also corresponds to the number 1 as well as the primordial number that contains all the rest, so perhaps the proud parents are encouraging leadership qualities in the young one.
In any case, most of you know that I am the last person to judge weirdo kid names. All I know is that a bris has NOT been confirmed. Would it be considered ironically hipster of the Portman-Millepieds to give their kid a Jewish name and not invite a mohel? Or simply confusing?
Chew that one over at the Shabbos table and get back to me. Shabbat Shalom!