chocolate is a verb

colors, flavors, whims and other growing things

Tag Archives: scuba

getting inspired…

moving the big basketI’ve never been to Anne Arundel County, Maryland, but Melanie, who blogs at Beyond Back Creek, takes us there in her reflections on life, craft, cooking, design, chicken coops and much more. Melanie also visits chocolate is a verb and has found these posts worthy of the Very Inspiring Blogger Award, for which I am hugely appreciative.

Acceptance requires the nominee to reveal seven bits of information and then suggest other bloggers for the award. So, herewith:

I’m an only child, but perhaps you guessed that.

As a former scuba instructor and a maker of baskets, I am among the select few who proudly wear the epithet “underwater basket weaver.”

When my big basket (yes, that big basket) was displayed at the Seattle Art Museum, I was surprised and delighted to discover that visitors dropped notes into it, like pennies into a well.

My musical tastes are far-flung and eclectic, but if I had to narrow it down, I’d take the blues. Hmmm, that doesn’t narrow it down much, does it?

I have had two birthdays graced by a total eclipse of the sun that I was able to see in person: February 26, 1979 and February 26, 1998.

I don’t own a television.

Many years ago, I was commissioned to collaborate with a needlepoint expert in the decoration of a 40th-birthday gift: a jockstrap. She stitched the waistband with the words “40 and still growing” and my part consisted of crocheting many dozens of life-size purple grapes, which decorated the business portion of the, ahem, garment.

In addition to chocolate is a verb, I blog daily about poetry and less frequently for Other Mind Press. (I also blog for clients, but that’s another matter.) Your Comments, Likes and subscriptions are very, very meaningful. Thank you.

I visit many blogs. Here are some that I find consistently Very Inspiring:

Alphabet Roadtrip

Talking to Strangers: An Introvert Hits the Streets

Riva Berkovitz

Ranch Notes: stories from this life in the country

The Dad Poet

Very Inspiring Blogger Award


garibaldiThe compass has me thinking about diving. In the usually less-than-stellar visibility of the Channel Islands, we would kick along near the bottom, looking for small surprises hiding in the reef — tiny scuttling crabs, colorful nudibranchs, eels, lobsters, a little octopus pouring itself out of an abalone shell into a darkened crack in the rocky crust. We would slip through the kelp forest, glance up, perhaps catch sight of a salad-plate-size deep orange Garibaldi or a charcoal-dark bat ray, fluttering along the sand, but mostly it was a small-scale world of subtle color and elaborate disguise that rewarded patience and close inspection. It was a place I could get lost, holding the compass uselessly in front of me, as often as not surfacing to spot the shore, or the boat, taking a straight-line bearing, then descending once more for the return.

I look again at the compass, write the word: compass. I am surprised to see that it is almost compassion. Almost compassion. How did the compass squeeze itself into compassion?

In its spot on the corner of my desk, this object of mysterious compassion is not my familiar, though I am drawn to the idea of it, the usefulness of it, the language of it that I have not yet learned to speak.
garibaldi photo by Jim Haw

night dive…

Ocean Day 2011 - bat ray…dropping over the side of the boat on a rainy summer night, clutching my flashlight, clutching the weighted line, descending through the inky cold, and there in the light’s first sweep discovering, perhaps 8 or 10 feet below, a bat ray, in slow and stately flight, with three baby rays clinging to her wide winged back.
photo: 560 students celebrate Ocean Day 2011