Unicorns Beneath the Sea
July 16, 2019 9:53 AM   Subscribe

A retired teacher found some seahorses off Long Beach. Then he built a secret world for them. Now he works with scientists to answer questions about mating and lifespan, among other questions. His partner Ashley Arnold 'learned to dive as part of a program the Salt Lake City Veterans Affairs hospital offered to female veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder and military sexual trauma.' “All the irritation on the surface disappears when you go under the water,” she says. “It’s like, ‘What was I concerned about?’ You forget about everything else. Nothing else matters.”

"[...] If Hanson wants to show you his underwater world, nothing will stop him. He will hold you firmly by the hand and guide you down to the forest he built at the bottom of the bay.

He will use a plastic tent stake, jabbing it into the bottom to propel himself — and you holding on — across the ocean floor. When he spots a seahorse he will use the stake as a pointer. Through the murky water you strain to see. Then it appears.

Orange and rigid. Thin snout. Bony plates. Stripes down the torso. Totally still.

And if you’ve never seen a seahorse in the wild before, you will feel honored and awed, as if you’ve just seen a unicorn beneath the sea."
posted by stoneweaver (2 comments total) 24 users marked this as a favorite
That’s the first time I’ve seen a diver sporting a skirt (in 40 years of diving). Pretty original. Is dive fashion a coming thing?

I’m thinking of a tuxedo wetsuit with tails ... and spats over my booties. I’ve already got a black BC; not tailored, though.
posted by sudogeek at 12:03 PM on July 16, 2019 [3 favorites]

I feel that the seahorses would appreciate your fashion stylings.
posted by stoneweaver at 12:11 PM on July 16, 2019 [3 favorites]

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