It's no secret San Diego has the best weather. Each month we ask one of our favorite San Diegans:
What else makes this city great?
Live: Ocean Beach
Work: San Diego comedy circuit
How Long: 18 years
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Arlington, VA — a town about five minutes from Washington DC. It’s a spectacular city, dense and compact with museums and a metro train system that can take you everywhere. In a lot of ways D.C. is the opposite of San Diego. It’s not a relaxed beach town by any means, and weather wise it’s tropical jungle heat wave in the summer and frozen tundra ice age in winter.
What brought you to San Diego?
When we were kids, my best friend Anthony and I loved to explore. Growing up, we’d talked about going to California, and after graduating high school, to get away from the summer heat, we decided to go on a major road trip, going all over the country. He loved to drive, and we made a second cross country trek the next summer, to see San Diego, which we’d read had the best weather in the continental United States — the opposite of the steam room climate we’d grown tired of in DC. So we drove to San Diego, eventually moving to Ocean Beach, where I’ve lived ever since.
Besides the weather, why do you continue to call San Diego home?
I’ve had a fun journey in San Diego, and as long as this adventure continues I will continue to call it home. When I moved to SD, I worked a lot of jobs. I started out as a dishwasher, then bus boy, waiter, bar back, and bartender. In 2000 I started tending bar at Winston’s in OB and eventually became the GM. In 2006 we started a comedy open mic night Ocean Beach Comedy, and I started going up on stage. I did a joke about moving to San Diego to be a weatherman because it’s such an easy job. “Today in San Diego it is going to be… freaking sweet! Do you need me to even check the map? OK, you see this entire region here? It’s going to kick ass! That’s the extended forecast — write it down, it’s gonna be the same tomorrow! Uh-oh looks like we do have a warning, there’s a front moving in, of jealousy from the rest of the country. Enjoy your weekend San Diego!”
I did move here for the perfect weather, I love living OB near the ocean, the people are friendly, and it’s beautiful and relaxing. But I also came for an adventure and that adventure has continued. I work at Winstons, which is a really fun live music club where I’ve met some of the best people in my life. The crew there is like a family, some of whom have worked together for twenty plus years. Winstons is also where I started performing stand up comedy, which became a real passion that would replace my late nights of bartending with late nights of doing open mics. After a couple years I was accepted as a member of the Best of San Diego at the Comedy Store in La Jolla, and then in 2014 I won San Diego’s Funniest Person contest at the Mad House.
A lot of my comic peers have since moved to LA, I’ve stayed here partly because stand-up led me to working on Tonight in San Diego, a late night TV talk show in the style of Conan or Colbert. I started on the show as a guest performing stand up, then later joined the crew as a joke writer, served as the co-host for a season and now I’m the full-time host.
The show is filmed live in downtown San Diego at The Geoffrey Theatre off Broadway and first started airing on KSDY 50, a local cable access channel. Just this year we were picked up by San Diego CW6 TV and now the show airs Saturday nights at 11pm. It’s is really special to me and a big reason I stay in San Diego, because it’s come so far in three years and has been a labor of love, a team effort of all volunteers putting in an incredible amount of time and energy.
What keeps me here besides the heavenly weather is everything that we highlight on Tonight in San Diego: the talented personalities, the music, comedy, improv, sports, surf, culture, art, food, beer, of this beautiful place. And my girlfriend is here. I’m excited to continue the adventure, exploring & showcasing even more of what makes San Diego so special. I’m proud to call San Diego my home and it’s definitely not just for the weather. Wait, is that rain outside? I didn’t move here for this!