David Roper

Dave Roper is a regular columnist for Points East. Next to sailing, telling and writing stories is Dave’s favorite pastime.  His most recent book, Watching for Mermaids was a three-time Boston Globe bestseller www.watchingformermaids.net. His writing has been published in eighteen languages.  Dave has been a yacht delivery skipper, captain of a 135’ Mississippi River stern wheel cruise ship, and life-long cruiser along the coast of Maine aboard his 31’ Independence sloop, Elsa Marie.  Dave is the founder of A-Script, a career advisory and resume writing firm in Marblehead, MA.  davidroper00@gmail.com

Chang Ho’s most romantic evening

July 1, 2016 at 12:42 pm

This month’s column was tight on deadline because I had to wait until June 5 for the release of critical information regarding Chang Ho’s mystery evening abduction in 1999. I have now obtained that information, which reinforces the phrase “the truth is stranger than fiction.” The names will be changedRead More

A sneak preview of Roper’s new book!

June 1, 2016 at 12:44 pm

Since the announcement of the upcoming publication of “Being Big Red,” a bunch of Points East readers have asked me, “How about a taste of what’s to come?” So why not a sneak preview? Here’s a piece from the middle of the book. “Big Red” is based on a six-foot,Read More

Being in two places at once

April 1, 2016 at 12:49 pm

A good friend who is editor of a particular magazine I write for sent me a nice note a couple years back when I said I had a real conflict and couldn’t make it to an important event. “Well, Dave, I’ve yet to meet anyone who can be in twoRead More

Grace and dignity: The beauty within

Grace and dignity: The beauty within

February 1, 2016 at 12:22 pm

“It’s not what you look at that matters; it’s what you see,” Henry David Thoreau wrote. He might have been thinking about this vessel. I know I was. And I knew I was looking at something beautiful. Something still beautiful. Others strolled by, seeing nothing, or stopped, looking surreptitiously, maybeRead More

October 1, 2010 at 9:44 am

October 2010 By David Roper Faith, fear and fateThe strong southeast winds had not dropped with the sun as they usually did that time of year, and the threatening black ledges 30 yards from Elsa’s stern off barren Smuttynose Island were close enough to show their barnacles as each waveRead More

A cautionary tale of 1959

A cautionary tale of 1959

September 1, 2010 at 9:39 am

September 2010 By David Roper As they rounded the point, the fog came right back. Just then, the young boy caught the first smell of spruce and felt the warmth of the land. Despite the fog, he looked for the entrance to the cove, eager to end that day’s foggyRead More

In search of simplicity

In search of simplicity

August 1, 2010 at 10:08 am

August 2010 By David Roper The thousands of items of marine gear on the market today supposedly exist to allow us a myriad of choices to facilitate our ability to get away, go boating, relax and be happy. I wonder, though. Robert Bellah, one of today’s most influential sociologists andRead More

Toto, we’re not in Kansas anymore

Toto, we’re not in Kansas anymore

July 1, 2010 at 10:02 am

July 2010 By David Roper It’s 3:22 a.m. on a Friday in June and I’m sitting on Elsa’s starboard berth looking across at a small oil painting of Marblehead Harbor that highlights a handful of gaff-rigged sloops and schooners from another century. The painting has a wonderful patina, and now,Read More

Finding the light

Finding the light

June 1, 2010 at 10:00 am

June 2010 By David Roper Eight or nine miles out, in plain sight, Boon Island lifts its solitary shaft aloft like an ‘eternal exclamation mark’ to the temerity of its builders. There is no comfortable dwelling on that lonely rock, over which storms sweep unchecked. The tower is itself bothRead More

May 1, 2010 at 9:57 am

May 2010 By David Roper Why I’ve never sailed around the worldMany years ago – at age 16, in fact – I decided to run away to sea. I had been reading of Robin Lee Graham’s adventures as a globe-circling, solo sailing teenager. Seemed like a cool thing to do.Read More