Wednesday, June 8

What's in a name?

I was looking back through our old posts, and I realized that about a year ago, I promised to explain how we chose "Sea Change" for our name - but then I never did. Just in case anyone thinks we're trying to make a clever reference to money (not at all), I want to clarify the meaning of Sea Change. Be forewarned, I'm about to geek out. What else do you expect from a girl who dates a Navy nerd?

Anyway, Sea Change is the name of a book by Sylvia Earle. Earle is one of the best, and best-known, female marine biologists in the world. I first read Sea Change at the age of 12, just after taking a trip to Sea World. That book, along with the trip to Sea World, pretty much sealed the deal for me: I was going to be a marine biologist.

The book isn't what we named the boat after, though. It's just what made me familiar with the term "sea change:"

sea change
  1. A change caused by the sea: “Nothing of him that doth fade,/But doth suffer a sea change” (Shakespeare).
  2. A marked or profound transformation: “The script suffered considerable sea changes, particularly in structure” (Harold Pinter).
In her book, Earle explains that a sea change is needed in terms of the health of the world's oceans, and that these changes can't be made without also changing the world-view about aquatic conservation issues. In other words, Earle believes that ignorance is a major threat to the sea and the future of mankind. So go buy the book and educate yourself!

And now I'll step down off my soap box and get back to the name of the boat. For us, the boat is a sea change in several ways: First of all, moving on to the boat was our first time moving in together. (Crazy, aren't we? That's why we have a 48' boat! Anything smaller might have been relationship suicide!:) So moving in together in itself was a marked transformation in our lives.

"Making the break" from land to sea was also a big change. Although living on a boat seems normal now, I remember how frustratingly different everything was at the beginning (What do you mean we have to fill up the water tanks to run laundry? What's that smell? And what the hell is dripping on my head?... Did I say in the beginning? OK, it can still be frustratingly different at times.). Not only was moving aboard a boat a profound lifestyle change, but in a way it was also a change brought about by the sea. Perfect!

And finally, we'd like to think that the boat itself is undergoing a transformation. No, we have not completely restored it. But, we are making changes one step at a time. In a few years, we hope it will look dramatically different.

So there you have it: the story behind the name.

But I can't end this entry without mentioning one more reference to "sea change" that is also quoted in the definition above. From Shakespeare:

"Full fathom five thy father lies;
Of his bones are coral made:
Those pearls that were his eyes;
Nothing of him that doth fade,
But doth suffer a sea-change
Into something rich and strange."



At 1:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


I didn't know that's how you got interested in marine biology. Always wondered just exactly how that happened to a Midwestern Girl.

And what's that about your father?


P.S. Humankind

At 8:59 AM, Blogger porchwise said...

I would imagine (being ex-navy myself) that your boat has all kinds of room for your husband.
I like the way you write so make sure you blog when you finally get around to making your AK trip. My wife and I had the same idea about fifteen years ago except we were going to buy a houseboat and just navigate all the waterways of the States. Too much happened to get in the way (accident, stroke, etc.) so be sure you maintain your course. Good Luck!

At 10:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tom and Jesse,

I have to congratulate you on your success and tell you, you are truly an inspiration to all young people out there.

Counting Blessings:
1. you were a new couple starting this adventure, the stress of the loans and surveys and money out plus careers.. and you didn't kill each other. Bravo!!!!

2. Moving in together is a big move for any couple and your buying and fixing up your home. That's allot of stress and you managed to get through it. Bravo Again.

the things the two of you have accomplished and will continue to do is an inspiration to all young couples out there. The two of you have been through allot and your still smiling. Don't forget that.

The fact is your new home is OLDER(and beautiful) and let's face it, everything at some point will need to be replaced. keeping that in mind, when things wear out or break down maybe it won't be so stressful.

But whatever you do, keep counting your blessings and always keep this thought in mind:
"We've got through everything else, we will get through this too."

Your new friend


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