About Me

Hello, my name’s Peter (my friends call me “Pete”).  Here’s a little of my background:

I was born in 1958 in Montclair, New Jersey, U.S.A., but grew up in north-central Ohio. I lived there from 1963 to 1982, except for two fabulous years in “Motown” (Detroit) at the end of the Sixties.  I attended Lexington High School (two years), Kiski Prep School (three years), Wittenberg University (one year), and Ohio University (three years), where in 1981 I got a B.S. in journalism.

After college, I drifted for a few years: beachcombed in Florida; haunted the blues clubs of Chicago; backpacked in the Rockies; then arrived in Cincinnati, Ohio in early 1984.  I’ve worked as a disc jockey, landscaper, proofreader, technical writer, and freelance writer.  I married a special woman, the former Lynn Stanley, in 1986, and I’ve been stuck in Cincinnati ever since.  We have two fantastic, grown kids, Holly and Nick, who never cease to amaze us with their brilliance, humor, and bad taste.  Oh yes, we also have a new granddaughter: stunning Aviana Rose!

Some of my hobbies are running marathons, mountain backpacking, vinyl record collecting (mainly ’60s and ’70s rock), reading history and classic literature, watching old movies, travel, organic vegetable gardening, and watching Lawrence Welk on Saturday night.  I hope you like my blog.  If you’d like to find out what longitudes is about, please check out my Welcome post.  Thanks!

Mildred Oswalt’s 3rd grade class,
Mansfield, Ohio

34 thoughts on “About Me

  1. Peter, What a great surprise to hear from you!!! I am so thrilled that you remembered me after all these years. I am glad you remembered the essay questions, notes on the board and realize that past history can help to understand the present and help the future. I have not had time to read your book, but when I finish it, I will write to you.

    I hope your son is enjoying college at UCF.

    Thanks again.
    Dave Oswalt

    • A belated thank you, Mr. Oswalt!! I will definitely contact you if I am in Naples. Are you related to my 3rd grade teacher, Mildred Oswalt?? Thanks for your comment, and for being such a great history teacher!

  2. After spending on a day and a half on the AT with my husband and two of my kids, 12 and 16, (we wanted to give backpacking a trial run), I thoroughly enjoyed reading your blog on your “week in the woods.” We spent the night on Wolf Laurel Summit – which was a mini-adventure for us considering I’m not in the best shape for climbing … but the solitude you described was spot on … thanks for the enjoyable read!

    • Thanks Lisa! You chose a great experience for your kids. Hopefully, like me, they’ll always remember their time on the AT. I’m hoping to do a piece of the Continental Divide this summer. Thanks again for reading…I really appreciate your feedback!

  3. Thanks for following The Immortal Jukebox Pete. I hope you have found lots to entertain you and perhaps made some discoveries. If you haven’t visited for some time check it out again! Good luck with your fascinating blog. Regards Thom.

  4. Pete, this is great! I don’t know why it took me so long to discover your blog, but I Intend to read everything on here. Perhaps when I retire from the day job (another year or 2 at most), I’ll have time to stay in better touch.

    • Cool, thanks so much, Robert! You’re often an inspiration when I write these stories. For the reggae post, I was thinking “I wonder if Robert likes reggae.” And I was thinking of you when I mentioned J.Q. Adams, since I know you’re a fan. Hey, thanks again, and drop in for coffee any time!

      (P.S. Let me know when you retire, as I want to join you!)

  5. Hi Peter – would you mind emailing me? I wanted to communicate with you (about the Phil Ochs/Donald Trump) but don’t seem to be able to find an email address here. I can explain in my reply.
    with very best wishes and thanks, Wes.

  6. Hello Sir Pete! wow! your blog is full of words and wisdom! i followed you already here on wordpress site. hope you’ll follow back me too 🙂 more powers to you and to your blogging life, Sire Pete! hope to keep in touch with you even just here thru blogging.

    • Thank you very much, but not sure how much wisdom is in my words! (and no need to call me “sir” :).) I look forward to visiting your own blog, and maybe hearing your thoughts on jazz music. Take care!

  7. OK fella. Chili, an owl and Woody’s guitar. You have my attention. I’ll be spending some time checking things out. Seriously (which I try to stay away from) the piece on ‘Blood On The Marias’ will be the first thing I look at. I’ve been immersed in similar stories and issues for a while so I’ll add to my research. Later.

  8. Pingback: XTC “Dear God” | Forgotten Rock Classics

    • Hi. Are you the guy from Neil’s blog that lives in little McArthur? I drive through there on my way to my alma mater (OU). I’m hoping my next marathon will be next spring. Maybe New Jersey. But it’s been a few years (I had a vertebrae issue), so I’ll have to see how the training goes. Best of luck in Columbus… nice, flat course. (And thanks for visiting!).

  9. Hi Pete – I enjoyed reading your interview with David Palmer (which David’s son posted on FB recently.) My brother was Rick Philp (the guitarist in The Myddle Class, referenced by DP in his interview.) David and Rick were the writers in The Myddle Class. I have been pursing the idea of writing a piece (or book) on the Myddle Class for years. I’d like to correspond with you and share some more about the MC. The memory of the MC at the uptown disco in NYC posted by Thom Lynch is one of the greatest stories of the legend of the MC. You can reach me at sgphilp@comcast.net.
    Steve Philp

  10. Great article/interview re David Palmer. Check out my reply to Thom Lynch post. Nice job by you. Stay interested in the past – it was the best of times

    • Thanks, Kathy. I read your reply to Thom’s post. I’ll always be interested in the past, since there are so many avenues and mysteries to explore. Judging by the enormous response to my interview with David, I’m not alone, and a lot of young people are fascinated by the ’60s and early ’70s music scene that he was a part of.

  11. Wow, your drifting log and hobbies list sound a lot like mine. Except the backpacking. I lived in Boulder and hiked the Rockies quite a bit but all of my (successful) backpacking and overnight camping has been in the urban centers of Europe — where most cities provide summer campgrounds for backpackers walking distance to the bars. Oh, and Lawrence Welk. I haven’t watched Lawrence Welk since you (and I) were in junior high 🙂

    • Thanks for the likes. Just started following your blog, and sounds like we have common thoughts and interests. I lived in Boulder, too, for a few months in ’83. Also, L. Welk is now on PBS, so you should check it out. While I’m a rock ‘n’ roller at heart, his show is a real hoot, and always brings a smile. Thanks again!

      • In ’83, I was still in Austin, seeing Stevie Ray Vaughan in the little blues clubs before he went big. And here you have me seriously considering Lawrence Welk 🙂

  12. Possibly. I’m looking for a school yearbook or 4th grade class photo from Ranchwood Elementary, ’67-’68 (we moved halfway through the year and I never got one). Let me know if you have something, I’ll pay top dollar!

  13. Hello Peter,
    I am the editor of the Sterling North Society newsletter, The Rascal, and I would like to use a portion of your blog post (and the photo) about growing up with a pet raccoon in our next issue. A wonderful story.

    Best wishes,

    James P. Roberts

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