Naming a pet or a person in a comic strip requires about the same amount of thought as naming something or someone for real. I tried to imagine what I would call a hamster – and a name beginning with “H” seemed like a good idea. “Humphrey” appealed to me both because it’s not a name commonly heard, and because I liked the “Humph” sound at the beginning…. it’s sort of a British “snort,” an expression of contempt or dissatisfaction. You never actually hear a “humph,” it is most commonly seen in print. I think in the US one might say, “harrumph!” – but this has a slightly different connotation. Ahhhh… the semantics of sound.