Origin of Rumkin.com

Over the years, I have been asked why I selected "rumkin.com" as my site's name. I repeatedly answer them with a fragment here and a sentence there. This page is a collection of everything rumkin-esque.

The Hunt

Before I registered my own domain name, I had a few rules in mind. I wanted it short, pronounceable, a word, non-offensive, and hard to screw up. I did not want anything with a number, symbol, nor anything that could be spelled multiple ways if I were to say the site name to someone. Things like "4ever.com" and "be-good.com" were instantly removed from consideration. I also wanted it to be 6 letters or fewer and I wanted a "dot com" ending because that's the fad at that time.

I wrote a program that took a wordlist and checked with DNS servers and various WHOIS servers in order to see if that domain was currently registered. This generated a list of possible domain names.

At that time (February 22, 2001), I was able to find a single 4 letter domain name: rynt.com. It did not satisfy my requirement of being pronounceable, and if I were to say "rynt.com" to people, they might try to type rint.com.

The search continued and 778 entries with 5 letters and 3791 with 6 letters. I painstakingly went through each entry by hand and proposed only the very best to my fianceé (who later became my wife). We settled on rumkin.com because when someone tells you the site name and you try to spell it, you usually get it right. Well, there are those that add a "p" in there, but there will always be someone that gets it wrong.

Other Rumkins

I did not select this site's name because of Teddy Ruxpin, the Nickelodeon character Harold Rumkin, or even because of the definition. Sorry folks.

By the way, here's the definition in case you didn't already know it.

  • rumkin ( rum"kin ) A popular or jocular name for a drinking vessel. source

A Russian-speaking person emailed me and mentioned that ...

Rumkin is a family name, formed from the word "rumka"
RUMKa (рюмка) is a small glass for strong drinks, like vodka

If you really want to add 'rumkin' to your vocabulary and not refer to this website, you probably would find an easier time using "rummer," which also refers to the small glass. For example, "Hey Bob! Fill me another rummer!" sounds way better than "Hey Bob! Fill me another rumkin.com!"