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
The truth about mermaids

The truth about mermaids

February 1, 2009 at 5:19 pm

Midwinter 2009 By David Roper June 15, 1608: In 1608, the English navigator Henry Hudson was skirting the polar ice off the Arctic coast of Russia in his second attempt to find a northeast route to the spice markets of China. Near the coast of Novaya Zemlya, Hudson made hisRead More

Peeling back the layers: The Roper Boats

Peeling back the layers: The Roper Boats

December 1, 2008 at 3:52 pm

December 2008 By David Roper On May 5, 1994, my now 92-year-old dad (aka, “Grampy” to Points East readers) self-published a book called “Roper Boats.” The book contained both pictures and narrative, done in his inimitable style, describing about 40 Roper boats owned either by his father, himself, or byRead More

Watch out when you think you know a lot

Watch out when you think you know a lot

October 1, 2008 at 3:42 pm

October 2008 By David Roper I have eaten lunch in the Driftwood restaurant on Marblehead’s waterfront with the same three guys (a group known locally as “the boys“) once a week, 52 weeks a year, every year for the past decade. Over these 500-plus lunches, many conversations have been aboutRead More

Why are we here? Are we going to be OK?

Why are we here? Are we going to be OK?

September 1, 2008 at 3:40 pm

September 2008 By David Roper For the last three days and nights there’s been just two of us in here. Two boats. Two people. He’s about a hundred yards away, aboard a tired 21-foot low-end cabin sailboat. One spreader droops down forlornly like the broken wing of a bird. HeRead More

What if whales weren’t big?

What if whales weren’t big?

August 1, 2008 at 3:54 pm

August 2008 By David Roper The four of us were sitting around a mesquite-wood campfire at the base of a canyon amid the hills way outside of Tucson, near the old Tucson to Tombstone stagecoach road. We had spent all day in the saddle, my horse and I following JoeRead More

The rewards of uncertainty

The rewards of uncertainty

July 1, 2008 at 3:49 pm

July 2008 By David Roper Remember responding to that “double dare” as a kid? Remember looking down off that ledge or that railroad bridge on that hot summer’s day and feeling pressure from your peers overcoming your basic survival instincts? Many of us jumped. Stupid. I remember responding to suchRead More

Moving Forward in Reverse

Moving Forward in Reverse

June 1, 2008 at 3:47 pm

June 2008 By David Roper A Points East reader fortunate enough to keep his lunch down while getting through my column about my holding-tank surgical removal struggle and the resulting effluent assault asked a legitimate question: So what did you put in that big space where the holding tank onceRead More

When no one else is watching. . . .

When no one else is watching. . . .

May 1, 2008 at 3:46 pm

May 2008 By David Roper “Hope for the best, but Plan for the Worst.” A famous round-the-world sailor had this imprinted on his companionway bulkhead. I guess he did it as a constant reminder. Makes sense. Those of us with a few miles under our keels know that things canRead More

Waste not, want not

Waste not, want not

April 1, 2008 at 3:56 pm

April 2008 By David Roper Thousands, maybe millions, of seagulls, geese, cormorants, ducks and fish poop into the water all around me 24 hours a day when I go cruising. But my waste is human waste, which apparently is a special excrement and needs a holding tank. I don’t thinkRead More

Coming of age on the starboard side

Coming of age on the starboard side

February 1, 2008 at 3:44 pm

Midwinter 2008 By David Roper My age of innocence ended around midnight one Saturday in the summer of 1969. It happened alongside a cruising yawl named Seaduction. What I inadvertently caused to happen, and what I experienced in a few short minutes, gave me my first real look at theRead More