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Dave Barry (born July 3, 1947) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning American author and columnist, who wrote a nationally syndicated humor column for the The Miami Herald from 1983 to 2005. He has also written numerous books of humor and parody, as well as comedic novels. Along with Ridley Pearson, he has written the Starcatchers series of books, which are four prequels to Peter and Wendy. They are Peter and the Starcatchers, Peter and the Shadow Thieves, Peter and the Secret of Rundoon, and Peter and the Sword of Mercy. No, he is no relation whatsoever to J. M. Barrie.
Dave Barry was born in Armonk, New York, where his father—also named David Barry was a Presbyterian minister. He was educated at Wampus Elementary School, Harold C. Crittenden Junior High School, (both in Armonk), and Pleasantville High School]] where he was elected "Class Clown" in 1965. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Haverford College in 1969. In his book, Dave Barry's Greatest Hits, he stated that during college he was in a band called "The Federal Duck." As the son of a minister and an alumnus of a Quaker-affiliated college, Barry avoided military service during the Vietnam War by registering as a religious conscientious objector. He considers himself an atheist.
While with the Miami Herald, he created a band with his friends from the Herald, and named it the "Urban Professionals", where he played lead guitar. He currently plays lead guitar in the band The Rock Bottom Remainders, whose other members include Stephen King, Amy Tan, Ridley Pearson, and Mitch Albom. ("Remainder" is a publishing term for leftovers books that don't sell.) Several high-profile musicians including Al Kooper, Warren Zevon, and Roger McGuinn have performed with the band, and Bruce Springsteen sat in at least once. The band's road tour resulted in the book Mid-Life Confidential: The Rock Bottom Remainders Tour America with Three Chords and an Attitude, which is now out of print.
Barry's first novel, Big Trouble, was made into a motion picture; directed by Barry Sonnenfeld, it starred Tim Allen, Rene Russo, and Patrick Warburton, with a cameo by Barry. The movie was originally due for release in September 2001, but was postponed shortly after the September 11, 2001 attacks, because the story involved smuggling a nuclear weapon onto an airplane.
On October 31, 2004, Dave Barry announced that he would be taking an indefinite leave of absence of at least a year from his weekly humor column with the Herald in order to spend more time with his family. He said that he would continue writing humor and children's books and working on filming the screen adaptation of his book, Dave Barry's Complete Guide to Guys, which was released in 2005; it premiered at several film festivals, and is available on DVD, though a theatrical release seems unlikely. On December 28, 2005, Barry said in an interview with Editor and Publisher that he will not resume his weekly column, although he would continue such features such as his yearly gift guide, year in review, his weblog, as well as an occasional article or column.