Patricia Gannon: What’s in a name? Plenty

Just in time for the new hurricane season, the National Academy of Sciences recently brought to light that female-named storms are the real killers because society takes fewer precautions. Somehow people believe the female of the species isn’t as deadly as the male.

Really.

Although the implied sexism underlying people’s reactions is subtle as vapor, the study concluded that changing an Edward to a Dolly causes triple the casualties. In other words, society makes subconscious decisions about hurricanes — with deadly consequences. That people got the hell off the beach in the path of Irene and Sandy was not addressed.

Interestingly, feminists also insisted it was sexism that caused the naming of storms in the first place and overturned the decades-old practice of female namesakes in 1978. That’s when not only masculine names, but some Spanish and French names were added for politically correct weather. This is a shame, because hurricanes were the one thing women could claim as their own, powerful and raging, a force to be reckoned with. Mother Nature at her most destructive reminded men to be mindful of female fury as well as who was really in charge. It’s the Tropical Storm Teddy or the Hurricane Kyle, Arthur, and Isaiah — Old Testament vengeance not withstanding — that makes one think nothing much is going to happen. Men will let you down.

The study deduced that since death tolls rose during female storms, it must be because victims took fewer measures, not because Nature doesn’t like it when you call her Ernesto. By way of disclosure, Katrina, the storm of the century, shares a variation of my daughter’s name.

Why am I not surprised.

Krewe of Bonaparte observes birthday

Space is always at a premium at La Fonda on a Friday night, but the Krewe of Bonaparte was squeezed tighter than two coats of paint into a private room, celebrating the anniversary of its namesake’s birth. This group keeps next season’s royalty under wraps, but not shy at all about their aristocratic past were Josephine XVI Colleen McDaniel, Josephine XIX Judge Marilyn Castle, Josephine VI Joan Damores, and Josephine III Barbara Black, who trumped them all. Hospitable and charming as always — Jack Castle, Elizabeth Abdalla, Marty Audiffred, and Dan Hare, who said, “Any excuse for a party.”

‘Seminar’ opens to acclaim

No need to tell this group to break a leg. They don’t need luck, they have talent. Presented by the Lauren-Reilly Eliot Company, “Seminar” by Theresa Rebeck opened at Cité des Arts and celebrated with a cast party afterward. No one cared about intermission as the Broadway comedy about struggling writers rolled on and spectators laughed aloud at the antics of Abigail Deger, Travis Guillory, André Trahan, Michelle Colón and dissolute writing coach Cooper Helm. Our favorite line? “Writers in their natural state are about as civilized as feral cats.” Gathering for champagne following a well-deserved standing ovation were all of the above, director Scott Gremillion, Ryan Buxton, Casey Harmon, Sally Herpin, Gerry O’Day, Phyllis Ledet, Dr. Frank Del Favero and wife Christa, and a proud Emily Kean, who said even as a little boy, her son Cooper was a scene-stealer. The play will run from Aug. 15 through Aug. 31.