Category: writing

Sample September 2017 Newsletter

Welcome to My New Writing/Speaking/Consulting/Tour Guiding Communication Practice

This is a sample of what I hope will be a long line of newsletters from my new communications and learning practice I officially opened here in DC this week. In my practice, I focus on 3 topics – the Baby Boomer Generation, classic rock music, and issues on aging, especially as they affect men.

How You Can Get This Newsletter Sent Directly to Your Inbox 

All you need to do is send an email to with the phrase Dave Price Newsletter in the subject line. It’s just that easy. Then each month (or on special occasions) you will receive a link to our just published newsletter so you can find out all the latest news about what’s going on with my writing, speaking, consulting, and tour guiding.

What’s New

In Writing

I’m currently contributing regularly to 2 online publications

I’m also researching for my 1st book tentatively titled Rock of Agers: How Has Classic Rock Remained So Popular for More Than 50 Years?

Here is a sample of some of the fun stuff I’ve done for the book over the Summer

Eric Burdon

  • Interviewed fans of Jerry Garcia and the Grateful Dead at The Hamilton Live concert series

Jerry Garcia

Air Guitar

In Speaking

I’m meeting later this month with the program director of the Arlington County Library to finalize a series of 9 interactive talks I will be delivering on some major issues of aging.

In Consulting

I’m designing a special inter-generational writing program where senior citizens in nursing homes will correspond with seniors in local high schools.

In Tour Guiding

I’m taking a 5-week course at the Newseum to prepare me to guide tours there.

The Blog Beat

You can keep up with all the latest news about the subjects I’m focused on by following the 4 blogs I’ve created, sometimes write for, curate, and publish.  You can either bookmark or favorite the blog sites and check them when you have time or you can sign up on the individual blog sites and have posts delivered directly to your inbox by email each time there is a new entry. Here are links to the 4 blogs:

Rock of Agers

Talking ‘Bout My Generation

Senior Moments with Older Today Dave

The DC Day Tripper

On Social Media

If you’re on Facebook, you can like and follow our Facebook pages:

If you’re on Twitter, you can like and follow us here:

Special Thanks This Month To …

Keith Berquist, the marketing manager of The Hamilton Live for setting me up to interview Grateful Dead fans at the venue.

Eric Burdon’s wife and agent, Marianna Burdon, for all her help facilitating my contact with Eric and his band.

And to my wife of 44 years, Judy, for proofreading everything I send out. She might be an artist by training, but she has turned into a hellaciously good editor to catch my mistakes and suggest changes.

In Memorium


Obviously, since classic rock is almost 55 years old, we are losing many of its performers. While all represent a loss, some tug at our hearts more than others.

For my former South Jersey English teaching colleague Shirley Giddens, that was the incomparable David Bowie. Here is a link to an article I wrote for Booming Encore about Shirley and “her man” David. And yes, that is Shirley’s license plate pictured above.

For Judy and me, it would be the recent death of Gregg Allman, vocalist and keyboard player for the legendary Allman Brothers Band. We saw Gregg perform on numerous occasions, the most special being on Judy’s 65th birthday when we actually got to chat with him and then see him perform stage-side right in front of his Hammond B-3 organ. Unfortunately (or fortunately), we also got to see him play live for his final concert at his Laidback Festival in Atlanta. Here’s an account of Judy’s 65th birthday on The Rock Legends Cruise IV with Gregg Allman.

JUdy and Greg

It’s My Life

Obviously, I spend a lot of my time researching, reading, writing, and speaking for my communications practice. Of course, I have to do extensive napping from all that exertion. But I do get to do other things and in each issue I’ll let you know about a few of them.

Living in DC (well to be precise just across the Potomac River in Crystal City, which is 3 Metro stops from the district), we’re in the heart of Trumplandia. Recently, while walking around  the area, I spied a fashion faux pas involving Donald Trump and tie-dye. Here’s the Trump-toodian non-tasteful tale.

I spent 18 hours this summer trying to figure out the brilliance that is David Lynch as I watched his Twin Peaks: The Return on Showtime.


light man

I thought maybe a week of reflection might help, but still Lynch’s arresting, disturbing, magnificent aural and pictorial vision of good and evil is beyond my powers of comprehension.

Words like brilliant, genius, unique, simply fail to do it justice. I realize it’s not for everyone, but it certainly is for me. Simply put, I believe David Lynch is the greatest all-around creative artist of my lifetime.

Twin Peaks is to fantastical surrealism what The Wire is to gritty realism. Opposites in most every way, but equally powerful, they are the two best shows ever to air on TV.

Got a light?
Jiao-dai. Judy.
Where the hell is Audrey Horne?
What year is this?
A blood-curdling scream from the Laura-Not Laura-Maybe Laura Palmer.
Black … fade to credits.

So many, many questions as yet unanswered. Perhaps some day, but not yet today.

If you followed the series closely and have any theories about what Twin Peaks: The Return actually meant, send me your thoughts by email to ( and maybe together we can figure out the enignmatic masterpiece. I really would enjoy hearing your thoughts.

I Don’t Know Why You Say Goodbye, I Say Hello

Well, that’s it for this month. And as my Tex-ian Daddy used to say “Lord willin’ and the creek don’t rise” I hope to see all of you back here next newsletter.

A Parting Thought 

A good way to go through life is to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.

Peace, take care, be well, and, most of all, be kind …

Dave Price


The 5th Beatle?


If You Like Hard Listening Music, Then the Rock Bottom Remainders Are for You

While most of Roy Blount Jr.’s public appearances involve his talking about his books or delivering a hilarious lecture on the people and the habits of the South, you can sometimes see him performing with the most literate band in all the land – the not-so-legendary The Rock Bottom Remainders.

The band, which took its self-mocking name from the publishing term “remaindered book” (a work of which the unsold remainder of a publisher’s stock of copies is sold at a reduced price), consists of some of America’s biggest selling authors including Stephen King, Dave Barry, Mitch Albom, Ridley Pearson, and Amy Tan.

At his appearance earlier this week in his home town of Decatur to discuss his new book Save Room for Pie: Food Songs and Chewy Ruminations, Blount briefly talked about the Remainders and his role in the band.

“I really have no idea why I’m there,” he said. “Some of the guys can actually play, but If I even pick up an instrument it goes out of tune”.

Read the complete article

Speaking Blountly, Always Leave Room for Pie

Can a book talk make you hungry?

Well, if it’s the recent food forum featuring noted Atlanta chef and former Top Chef contestant Kevin Gillespie discussing Roy Blount Jr.’s new book Save Room for Pie: Food Songs and Chewy Ruminations with the author, the answer is yes.

If you’re not familiar with Blount or his work, think the regional wit of Mark Twain or a more historical, but none-the less hysterical Dave Barry.

The discussion was held in Blount’s hometown of Decatur, Georgia, where Gillespie operates Revival, one of his two wildly popular Atlanta-area restaurants.

Read the complete article

The Science Behind the Big Bang Theory

When it comes to the image of a southern good ole boy, you couldn’t find one much more opposite than that of Sheldon Cooper, the extremely intelligent, rigidly logical, and completely socially inept breakout character of TV’s long-running, highly rated comedy hit “The Big Bang Theory”.

But in a ironic twist, Cooper, played by multiple Emmy winner Jim Parsons, was supposedly born and raised in Galveston, Texas, has a overly devout southern-drawling Evangelical mother, and a doting grandmother he calls by that most southern of sobriquets “Mee-Maw”.

For those few who aren’t familiar with the show, it revolves around the antics of Cooper and three other brilliant young scientists whose geekiness and intellect are contrasted for laughs with the social skills and common sense of the women they encounter in their lives.

However,  the real co-star of the show, after humor, is the actual science employed on every episode.

Read the complete article

Please Allow Me to Introduce Myself

Hi. I’m Dave Price and welcome to my writers page – Write On with Dave Price.

I hope you like what you find here. I also hope you will visit the 4  blogs I created, curate, write for, and publish. They are:

For 3 Nonfiction Books I’m Working On

  • Senior Moments (w/Older Today Dave) – Ideas and tips about actively aging so your later years can be can be productive, meaningful, and fulfilling.
  • Sprinkling Stardust: A Grandpop Speaks – My thoughts on growing old, grandparenting, and some of the important issues facing all of us, no matter what our age.
  • Talking ‘Bout My Generation – The people, places, things, and ideas of interest to Baby Boomers and those who wish they were.
  • Rock of Agers – A look back at the music and artists from rock and roll’s 2nd Decade (1964-1973) and those who are still carrying on that sound today.

Other Writing Sites

  • Sixty and Me – I’m a featured contributor to this online magazine which reaches about 250.000 women worldwide.

I’m planning on having fun on this journalistic journey and I’ll hope you’ll join me. I’d really like to hear from you. You can make a comment on the Contact page of this web site. You can leave a comment after any post on this page. You can also leave comments on any of my blog posts or the related social media sites I manage.

I do have one request. My artist wife Judy, who edits all my work, contends that I’m self-centered, insensitive, juvenile, careless, and verbose in both my talking and my writing. After reading my stuff, even if you agree, please don’t let her know. She doesn’t need any more validation for her views.

Have Story, Will Write

Me as cub reporterWhen I first started as a reporter in newspapers in 1974, my job was relatively simple.

 I was assigned a story and had to write it on my Underwood manual typewriter. Editors read the story, made changes, decided where it was to go in the paper, and sent it to a copy reader for proofing.

It was then transported to the composing room, where it was set into type, read by another proofreader comparing the original copy to the new text, and given to layout guys who pasted it in its proper place on its proper page.

Finally, my story, along with all the others in that day’s paper on page plates, was sent to the back shop, where it would roll off giant printing presses, ready for the circulation department to get it to readers. Meanwhile, salesmen in the advertising department were selling ads so that the publisher would have enough money to pay my salary.

Today, as a freelance writer, my job is much more complex. I (most often) find the stories. I write the stories. I pre-edit the stories; Judy post-edits them. I lay them out and then publish them on my computer. Now all of that I don’t mind. In fact, it’s actually fun when I stop procrastinating and finally get around to doing it.

But then I must be my own circulation department, finding readers for my stories, and my own advertising department, trying to figure out how to get at least some of my articles placed in publications that will pay me so my writing can help pay our bills.

It’s this part of the freelance business that bothers me. I’m much more writer than salesman.

But I am sales savvy enough to know that you should have a slogan (preferably a catchy one) for your business. Here’s mine – Have Story, Will Write. It’s at the top of my business card.

Now, like so many things in this writing business, my slogan is something borrowed, revised, and then used in a new context.

It is takeoff of the title of the western TV show “Have Gun, Will Travel”, which aired from 1957 until 1963. Here is the IMDB plot summary for that show: Professional gunfighter Paladin was a West Point graduate who, after the Civil War, settled into San Francisco’s Hotel Carlton were he awaited responses to his business card: over the picture of a chess knight “Have Gun, Will Travel … Wire Paladin, San Francisco.”

So what does my slogan “Have Story, Will Write” mean for you? 

Well, if you are an editor or publisher of a publication that has a story you would like written, I would like to be that writer. And if you don’t happen to be a publisher, but have a great story that needs to be written, I want to be the guy that does that. If neither is the case, you can follow me and my writings online. Writers always need readers. Lots of readers.

Unlike the Richard Boone character Paladin in “Have Gun Will Travel,” as a freelance writer for hire, I don’t carry a gun strapped low to my thigh. But I do have a pen, and a bunch of notebooks, and an Apple laptop. You know what they say: “The pen is mightier than the sword.

And my pen, like Paladin’s gun, is yours if you need it.

Nouns, Verbs and Me: A Personal History

Good writers write with verbs, but they write about nouns.

Nouns, as you might recall from Mrs. Slabbersmith’s 4th grade class (or Sister Slabbersmith, if you went to Catholic school), are any person, place, thing, or idea in a sentence.

Well, speaking of nouns and we just were, here is an organized recounting of some of the important people, places, things, and ideas in my life, a personal inventory that I hope may give you added insight into me and my writings. Or even better, convince you to hire me to write a story or 2.

A word of warning, however. My Dad was born in Texas and claimed the status of a Texan for all the 65 years of his life, even though he eventually lived in 2 other states. As a Texan, he could tell a long tale that, while invariably entertaining, didn’t always adhere to a strict standard of 100 percent accuracy.

It’s a trait that was genetically and experientially passed on to me. But in this recounting, as I do with all my writing, I promise to always tell the truth. Except when I embellish, exaggerate, prevaricate, or outright lie for the sake of a better story.

For as Dick Beecroft, the 70+-year-old reporter who sat at the desk behind me at my 1st newspaper job used to say “A good newsman writes from facts, but a great writer never lets the facts get in the way of a good story”.

So, without further fanfare,  here is my self-composed accounting of some of the high points of me, my work, and my life.

Personal Life & Family History 

  1. I was born in Jefferson Hospital in Philadelphia. Pennsylvania on March 26, 1952, the only child of Alvin Owen and Mary Louise Ivins Price.
  2. I was raised and lived for the 1st 59 years of my life in Upper Deerfield Township, a rural/suburban community adjacent to Bridgeton, NJ and the home of the once-thriving frozen food empire of C. F. Seabrook.
  3. In my childhood, Bridgeton was a bustling, one-factory town of 20,000. But when the Owens-Illinois glass plant,  once the largest glass manufacturing site in the world, closed in the 70s, the city began an economic downslide from which it has never really recovered.
  4. Even though no one who meets me ever believes it, I really did attend Bridgeton Christian School from Kindergarten until 6th grade.
  5. I went to Seabrook School for 7th and 8th grade. This is where I met Judy Lynn Snyder, whom I will be mentioning later. I also lived for a time on 4th Street in Seabrook Village, where my family was the only family on our block that spoke English, for the true melting pot community was home to many Japanese Americans who had been forced in west coast relocation camps during World War II, as well as war-displaced European families from such places as Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Germany, Poland, and Communist Russia.
  6. Because my father and mother operated a large dry cleaning plant in nearby Salem, I spent most of my Saturdays and Summers in that predominantly black city, where I honed my meager skills in baseball, basketball, and playground football. While I never became the great athlete I hoped to be as a youngster, I did help establish the career of Lydell Mitchell, an All-American running back from Penn State University who went on to star for the Baltimore Colts in the NFL. If Lydell were to tell the tale honestly, he developed much of his ability by running around, over, and sometimes even under me in the constant pickup football games we played in the Fall. Lydell also hit a baseball off me in the Summer of 1962 that NASA scientists are still tracking as it makes its way across the Universe.
  7. In 1969, I graduated with 679 other seniors from Bridgeton High School where I still hold 2 records: (1) most times sent to the principal’s office for violating my school newspaper pass without being suspended and (2) the only sports editor of the Echo, the school student newspaper, ever threatened not once, but twice with long-term suspension for actions undertaken as part of my journalistic duties (A) Writing the headline “Girls Lust After Upper Berths” for a tennis story and (B) improperly touching my short-skirt wearing girlfriend of the time under a long table at the local radio station while both of us were participating in an on-air radio news show.
  8. In the Fall of that year, I started Villanova University, where I would be a graduate in the Wildcat Class of ’73. I entered college intending to become a lawyer, but left instead with a BA in English, a life-long mentor in English Department Chairman Dr. Robert Wilkinson, and memories that I wouldn’t trade for a seat on the Supreme Court.
  9. In January of 1973, I married the aforementioned Judy Lynn Snyder at my Mother’s church on a dark, rainy winter night, which was brightened considerably by the candles at our service and the smiles of our family and friends. And what a service it was: Some of my friends spent time in the bathroom smoking illegal substances; others were passing around bottles of Boone’s Farm in brown paper bags; and still others were lasciviously eyeing Judy’s attractive Trenton State roommates, their love ardor fueled not by the Holy Spirit of the Methodist faith, but by spirits of a much more worldly nature.
  10. Judy and I survived that raucous night, and 6 months later, our only child Michael Keith Price was born. It was, quite simply, the best product our union, which is now in its 44th year, ever produced
  11. After years as a perpetual student, Michael obtained a PhD in Economics from the University of Maryland. He married Shannon Sullivan from Boston, a Duke graduate and Maryland Master’s of Economics recipient. That union eventually produced the 2 greatest gifts Judy and I have ever received – our granddaughter Audrey and her 17-month-younger brother, Owen, who is named after my father. 
  12. After stays at the University of Nevada Reno (where Audrey was born) and the University of Tennessee in Knoxville (where Owen entered the world), Michael and Shannon moved to Atlanta, where Michael taught he Fall Semester at the Andrew Young Policy Center at Georgia State University and the Spring Semester at the University of Chicago. In March of 2017, Michael was named a full professor at the University of Alabama (Roll Tide) where he continues to split his time between that campus and the University of Chicago.

Me and the World of Work

  1. My1st job was helping out at my parents’ cleaning plants. I hated it. But I did learn a valuable lesson – my Dad worked way too hard and I decided I never wanted to own my own business. I would always be satisfied to let someone else hand me a paycheck. 
  2. In high school, I discovered what I thought was the greatest way to make money ever invented – playing keyboard in a rock and roll band.
  3. In college, I continued to play in bands. I also came up with a 2nd way to get some extra spending money. I would write short papers for my friends who asked me to. It was my 1st paid job as a writer. After my sophomore year, when I wasn’t attending classes or playing music in East Coast bars or clubs, I substitute taught in my old high school. 
  4. After graduating Villanova in 1973 and then taking 2 extra education classes and a semester-long student teaching experience at what was then Glassboro State College (now Rowan University), I sought English teaching work anywhere in South Jersey. In the spring of 1974, I received a callback for an interview for an English position at Woodstown High School. It’s been more than 4 decades and I’m still waiting for their answer, so I guess I have to assume they are not going to hire me. 
  5. In the summer of ’74, tired of Judy rightfully pointing out every hour on the hour that it was next to impossible to raise a family on the meager money from my part-time liquor store clerking and band playing, I should – no make that must – find a full-time job. Angered, I threw a pillow at her and stormed out of the house, only to realize that Judy had the only car and the only set of keys. Undaunted, I set out on foot to find full-time employment. I don’t remember everywhere I went in the city of Bridgeton that day, but I do remember stopping in a hardware store and a small grocery establishment. Finally, I ended up at the Bridgeton Evening News. Since the paper had by then been printed, the Managing Editor Joe Garwood kindly agreed to grant me a few minutes. He asked me 3 questions: (1) Do you have any experience? (2) Do you have a journalism degree? (3) Can you type. Since my answer was no to all 3, I was immediately given the job. No, of course, I wasn’t. Garwood patiently explained to me that while he liked to hire locally, I really had nothing to offer. I left and headed back home. That night, shortly after 7 p.m, Garwood called and said a reporter had just suffered a stroke and he would hire me on a trial basis for a 2-week probationary period, paying me $80 a week. At the end of that successful trial, I was given a permanent reporting position and a $20-a-week raise.
  6. With that as a beginning, I spent more than 10 years in newspapers. I worked as a police reporter, then an investigative reporter for the Evening News. I was hired by The Press of Atlantic City, where I served at different times as a political reporter, a features writer, and finally Bureau Chief of the Press’ Cumberland County Bureau. I spent a year with The Philadelphia Bulletin covering South Jersey. After Joe Garwood’s successor left the Evening News, I returned as managing editor. At the time of my hiring, I was the youngest managing editor of a daily newspaper in the state of New Jersey.
  7. Now, while at 1st glance, that managing editor post might seem impressive, my family life, after more than a decade of the crazy style and long hours of 70s/80s journalism, was falling apart. Plus, I had years ago developed an addiction to both drugs and alcohol, a condition that while not affecting my rise in journalism, was playing havoc with my role as a husband and father. I resigned my position as managing editor and entered the Seabrook House Alcohol and Drug Treatment Center. After a 34-day stay there, I emerged with no job, but equipped with the skills to keep sober in my recovery. As I type this, I still recall the last day of a drink or smoking, snorting, or swallowing a drug. It was the October Friday prior to Columbus Day. And it was 1984. 
  8. With my contacts in the Bridgeton School system, I relatively quickly obtained a job as a teacher/career counselor for adults in the adult High School program there. After a few months, I interviewed for and obtained a similar position working for high schools in 3 South Jersey counties. During this time, I was again writing, but my focus was on creating proposals and seeking grants for educational programs, including the one that would keep me and my office funded. 
  9. Since every 6 months my job was in funding jeopardy, when offered an English teaching position at my old Bridgeton high school, I took it. For the next 20 years, I taught English to all types of students in all types of programs. I placed my writing skills on hold, but put my proofreading, editing, revising, and, most of all, my writing guidance skills in high overdrive by working with my students and their writing
  10. After 20 years in that role, I was offered and took a position as Language Arts Instructional Coach/Academic Curriculum and Program Designer with the Talent Development Program out of Johns Hopkins University. Since Bridgeton was a model Talent Development High School, I was able to keep my Bridgeton base, but was also able to work with schools in Philadelphia, Baltimore, and New York City. One of my duties in that position was to create awareness for all that was going, so I resumed my active writing career by creating a series of educational blogs and articles.
  11. After 5 years with Talent Development, I had put in 25 years with the state of New Jersey Education system and was eligible for retirement. In 2011, I retired as an educator and my wife retired as the manager of an art gallery and custom frame shop. We decided to move to Crystal City in Arlington, Virginia, just 3 Metro stops from Washington DC and all that city has to offer. I didn’t expert to work again, but former colleagues of mine from Johns Hopkins who had left the university and formed an educational consulting company of their own, asked me to join them. I declined a full-time position, but did agree to be an independent, part-time consultant. For the next 4 years, I worked in the DC school system, helping teachers, counselors and administrators of highly at-risk students with management, instructional, and curricular issues. For a brief time, I also shuttled back and forth from National Airport to Syracuse, NY, helping the district there set up special programs for their ask-risk students.
  12. In February of 2017, after residing for 14 months in Atlanta, Georgia to spend time with our grandchildren,  we returned to Crystal City. I began establishing a writing/speaking/consulting/tour guiding practice, which I opened in September. So there it is. That’s my personal story, and as they say, I’m sticking to it. And all of it is true. Except, of course, for the parts I made up.