Hello world!

I’m looking out across the I-5 at the San Diego Airport from my office window as I open up this blog today.  Actually, the shade is drawn because it’s so bright outside, so I’m looking at the blank shade and imagining the airport and cars from the sounds that drift in through the open window.  I only pull it up at night to watch the planes land as the cars go flying by, sounding almost like waves crashing on some beach.  The sun bothers me when I’m trying to read the computer screen.  I’m surrounded by books and microphones and other audio electronics since this tiny room doubles as a makeshift recording and broadcasting studio. I almost always write from this spot and I hope you enjoy some insight here as I try to examine things from my own perspective; maybe you’ll gain a perspective on your own world as you peep into mine. You’re welcome to join me and comment as much as you like. I often don’t have the time to reply until 4 in the morning when I’m trying hard to finish up before the sunrise…

Thanks for listening


David Patrone’s Entertainment Manisfesto

To the Benevolent Order of Patrones [BOoP]

I’d like to introduce you to my new company. well actually its not a new company, David Patrone Entertainment opened in 2011 in Stateline (South Lake Tahoe) Nevada when I moved there because of my professional Skiing career at Heavenly and for all of the entertaining I planned to do in Nevada and elsewhere. Midnight Productions, the production company I opened in 2000 in San Diego was just handling California productions because of the vast differences in regulations (and taxes of course). I have a love/hate relationship with California in that I love California and I hate its Government which was the impetus for my radio show “The Speakeasy.” It’s difficult, to say the least, to live or work in a place when you love the location and you hate the people running things. I feel that way about the State of California and the United States in General. I have long been flirting with the idea of leaving the country altogether and expatriating to Chile or New Zealand purely for the protest value since I have never visited either countries. I would expatriate to Israel, Brasil or Japan because I love those places but the skiing sucks in those countries and everyone knows I can’t live where the skiing sucks. I was thinking of Norway or Italy cause i love those places too but since I live on a boat on the West Coast I was thinking of two places that I could actually sail to fairly safely since I’m kinda new at this sailing thing. Anyway, in the meantime, as I contemplate the joys of telling the United States of Corrupt Politicians and Excessive Regulations to go fuck themselves, I’ve decided that it’s time to at least make the two places that I spend the most time more bearable when it comes to entertainment. Now I’m not saying that the entertainment that is in San Diego and South Lake Tahoe is bad necessarily, just that the great entertainers that live in these two places are definitely under utilized or frequently touring outside of San Diego (or both). In fact, the vast number of awesome entertainers in this country tend to be under utilized and remain an untapped resource which I intend to help change. There are many great entertainers who get regular work here in SD and I applaud them especially guys like Gilbert Castellanos who has spent his professional lifetime lifting up the musicians around him and offering a place to showcase and train great talent in San Diego at his famous Jam Sessions. Places like Croce’s Jazz bar, Dizzy’s and 98 Bottles have been instrumental in offering great venues for audiences to truly experience exceptional musicians at the most intimate level. I’ll apologize in advance to guys like Tim Mays, Java Joe and Lou at Lestat’s et al. who have always offered wonderful venues for other types of music like Casbah, Java Joes and Lestat’s but I’m not going to sit here and name every damn live music venue in San Diego because I don’t know them all and nobody wants to read that shit anyway. My posts are long enough as it is.

I digress. The reason for this post was to officially state my intentions over the next year in San Diego and eventually around the country unless I get completely fed up with the assholes in office and decide to throw it all away for a skiing job in Patagonia and a Jazz Sailing tour of the Pacific Rim and I’ll tell you now that I am really on the fence about this one.

David Patrone entertainment has always been interested in providing great entertainers and in general I’ve always tried to make a living doing the things that interest me cause otherwise I get bored and self-destructive, just to be completely honest.

I like to learn and I like to teach. I love to entertain my friends with great food, talented performers and interesting conversation. I like to complain about things that I don’t think are right. I like to help people. I like people who are not “normal” and I like to put people who would not normally mix together and watch them go. I like the energy of a city’s bustle and I like the challenge of remote wilderness. I like getting on a microphone in front of 10,000 people with no idea what I’m about to say (unless I’m introducing someone whose name I can’t remember) and I like extreme sports and dangerous places. I like 70 MPH downhill ski runs and jumping off the cornice at Mammoth. I only say that because a 70MPH run isn’t that big of a deal and jumping off a cornice is pretty easy if you don’t mind 70MPH downhill runs. There’s plenty of stuff that scares the bejeesus out of me like mispronouncing a Bride’s name during the first introductions but that’s only happened once and we’re not going to talk about that right now. If you want to hear some good stories, just ask me about the times I’ve mis-introduced people at an event. It’s only happened twice but they were DOOZIES. When I have those naked nightmares I’m almost always introducing the prime minister of some country, in her own country, I can’t remember her name and my band is wearing dirty t-shirts. I’m actually cringing right now just thinking of that time I was introducing Billy Ray Smith and Kimberly Hunt who I knew were married but not being a San Diegan or a football fan and being kind of new in town, I didn’t know they were married. I had met them both a few times separately and every one just called him “Billy Ray” the event person told me to introduce Billy Ray and Kimberly Hunt, which I did and when the place all broke out in laughter, well, I didn’t realize what I had done at first and then later was mortified and angry at the event person for not specifying what I was supposed to say. Anyway, that was one of the times… Seriously, 15 years later I still cringe at that one.

So here’s the new deal on Midnight Productions. I’m taking it to the next level and I’d like to invite everyone to participate cause I can’t be everywhere at every time. If you feel like reading the whole thing, g for it, if not just read the first paragraph and go find me your favorite entertainer or venue so i can get in touch with them.

This new venture will officially launch in the next month.My goal for this company is to help elevate great entertainers and to shape Professional Event Production using those great entertainers. My company has five primary goals, to identify assets, improve assets, utilize those assets, promote those assets and eventually to improve legislation pertaining to the Hospitality industry.

First to identify local and national entertainment assets (incluing front and back of house technicians)
Improve those assets with education and collaboration
Develop locations to showcase those assets
To provide professional services connecting great entertainment to Hospitality and Event professionals as well as private clients.
To improve the climate for entertainment and hospitality by interfacing with legislators and rewriting poorly conceived legislation which hampers the hospitality industry.

This company has my name on it but it’s not just mine. I’m assembling a team of local bad-asses who can run as fast as I can and sleep even less.
1. I have been seeking out professional entertainers and up and coming talent for years from around the country who are interested in honing their craft on the stone of their peers and performing in San Diego and the West Coast in general.
2. David Patrone Entertainment’s team of bad-asses will provide professional development and coordinate ongoing education from Small Business Accounting Practices to Marketing Tools to Masterclass Musician Workshops to expose entertainers to professionals who can make them more effective at running the business of entertainment and becoming better performers. Our team will collaborate with a vast network of experienced pros to lift up entertainers. We will provide audio and video recording services for creating marketing clips and other services. We will provide live radio broadcasts and showcases on the internet to include podcasts, and we will attract customers who are seeking the best in Hospitality services
3. I am also seeking venues who wish to showcase talent where entertainers and performers are being compensated for their dedication to their craft.
4. David Patrone Entertainment will provide a unique service to venues, event professionals and private clients which allows them to use entertainment to shape their events or unique spaces and a place to connect with these entertainers who understand how to provide unique performances catered to specific locations and events.
5. We will collaborate constantly within the entertainment industry and with local and state legislation to streamline the industry and make it more exciting while enabling a safe and effective environment, improving the San Diego Hospitality experience for our customers and our clients.

Additionally I will be teaming up with a local radio and entertainment legend in San Diego to restart up my hospitality radio show. We will publicly discuss the industry and how we can all “Raise the Bar” in San Diego and coordinate and collaborate with everyone from all facets of the hospitality industry right up to the local and state legislators to make San Diego the finest destination city in the United States. I will have a variety of guests from musicians and bartenders to writers and politicians.. and you know me, I ask weird questions 🙂

If you are a professional in this industry and you value where we are going as a city and see a place for you in this opportunity. Now is the time to get in touch.

If you are an investor who thinks this is an opportunity you can’t miss, you’re right. call me at 775.781.9776 this is my personal cell phone and you will be speaking with me directly.
I am seeking private funding for a venue, production services and equipment as well as start up funding for this company which has remained small but successful for almost 20 years. Help me take this to the next level.

Call me anytime,

David Patrone

Jerry Heldman: Good Samaritan, “Jazz Wizard,” My Dad

From: The Desk Of DP

To: Ladies and Gentlemen of the Benevolent Order of Patrones [BOoP]

I come to you, head down and eyes averted, having had the full intention to write a charming and irresistible post today; trainwreckish and gravitational in its universal appeal and debatable existential value…

when I came across this blog post written by the sister of a close friend about her renowned Jazz Bassist of a father (who I regrettably failed to encounter in all the years I’ve known his son). I have only 7000 more things to do before I go to sleep tonight but fortunately I’m on Pacific Standard… Unfortunately, whenever I hear of an artist passing, it creates panic and an almost-tangible pain not unlike gallstones in some vague nook located between the place that I internalize of the accumulated shame from unfinished assignments & unpursuable machinations and just to the left of the “why don’t I have a wife and kids yet?” echo chamber. During a normal year, the following two committees are in charge of any excess guilt:

The Committee for Honesty and Fastidious Documentation
The Consortium for Imaginative Prose and Poetry

These typically assuage any crisis but it appears from my blog that I granted sabbatical indiscriminately around this time last year to be supplanted by an organization that was formed only a decade ago and has lately become the primary department responsible for artistic expression in the Private Biological Symbiotic Assembly of Organic Material known as David Patrone:

The Emergency Cerebral Assets Allocation Committee for the Advancement of Unrecorded, Anti-mnemonical, Spontaneous, Improvisational Musings and Utterances for Amplified Broadcast of Artistic and Intellectual Content within the Implied Rhythmic and Harmonic Framework of the Popular Canon of American Jazz Standards has no known oversight, no requirement for recordkeeping and no apparent fiscal restraint;. Though the documentation is clear that the framework is intended to be relied upon, there are no set requirements which officially require this and the framers of this committee were notorious for the philosophy in which intent, meaning and results were arbitrarily defined in the spirit of creative interpretation.

I apologize for the lack of whimsical acronym assignments. Apparently the Assembly of Mnemonic Acronyms has also been on Sabbatical including both Whimsical and Ribald divisions, though the Brain Housing Group, id Division will often attempt to operate in their absence, experience has shown that this organization tends to lose assets and reputational standing when the BHGiD supervises tasks that interface with other organisms…

That being said, the issuance of this memorandum is to inform you of the following:

I have renewed my literary and poetic Licenses and will make a concerted effort to document future spontaneous improvisations and transcribe some original material for my next ALBUM, “Songs for my Brother’s Kids” …

and of course to posthumously introduce you to “The Jazz Wizard” Jerry Heldman.

Dr. Caroline

My father died last Friday. Pneumonia finally took him, and despite two years to intellectually prepare for his death, it hits in emotional ways that are simply not possible to prepare for. Jerome “Jerry” Heldman was born on February 24, 1937, in Fargo, North Dakota, was raised in Seattle, lived in southwest Washington starting in the early 1970s, and died on October 11, 2013, in Yacolt, Washington.

My dad was different from other dads I knew. He was an ill-fitting transplant in rural, isolated Yacolt where he settled down at the foothills of Mt. Saint Helens to raise six kids. He told stories of travelling the globe during his stint in the Air Force (1955 – 1959), playing the drums nearly every night at the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair, hitchhiking the West Coast as a hippie musician, and running the fabled underground Seattle jazz club The Llahngaelhyn (1965- 1968)…

View original post 2,503 more words

Frosty Drive

The drive was rough to say the least.They actually got this truck out!

While packing the night before, I began to get strange pains in my leftern abdomen that made me wonder if I had been poisoned; which somehow didn’t stop me from quaffing Lucky Strike after Lucky Strike on the Lanai as Jeff likes to call it. There have been no shortage of potential culprits for that potentiality lately; especially after writing that song for Mo’vember about Moustache Rides (Video coming soon!); but, that’s a story for another day… I am now convinced that it had to do with the inadvertent ingestion of tingling bronzing solution; although at the time I thought it might have something to do with a brownish banana, acquired from a from a willful four-year-old I’d met earlier in the day in exchange for some Pretzel Crisps, one of those souvenir flattened pennies and the use of a screwdriver; which actually turned out to be an XLR to 1/4″ audio adapter.  If you’ve ever seen an XLR (f) to 1/4″ (m), you can easily understand why a four-year-old would think it was a screwdriver; however, exactly why she was screwing 1/4″ holes in her banana is anybody’s guess, but that as they say, is a story for another day.  A couple of times while packing, I was caught by surprise by a particular breath or movement and doubled over in pain. Maybe not pain as much as surprise, irritation and fear. Apparently I like to exaggerate, Jeff tells me. Not one to pack in advance, I was hurrying and had no time for the pain, thanks you Carly Simon. I had an embarkation order that had to be filled. Paraphrasing Muir: The Mountains were calling and I must go. I stressed about the unusual stabs of whatever was happening in my gut for a while; but, at the time I had bigger problems if you can believe it. After almost finishing, I surrendered, large plastic tubs of mountain gear surrounding my bed as I landed softly upon it. Big Red was mostly packed and I could do the rest in the morning while waiting for the co-pilot to arrive.  Driving to Tahoe in the winter is always a chore but Big Red was without a heating device or a reasonable radio and making the drive alone in an old truck with a questionable maintenance record, dodgy speedometer and a completely inoperable gear indicator would be a trial… to say nothing of the cold… Though the co-pilot was experienced with Big Red and her vagaries in temperate San Diego, I wasn’t sure that this trip would be nearly as pleasant as any that had gone before. Maybe the Co-Pilot knew this. Hmm I’ll have to re-evaluate that profligate salary…

Through the night, the gurgling from my organs was so loud and the pains in my side got so bad at times I was sure I’d be diverting Big Red to the VA Hospital on the crumbly slopes of La Jolla rather than the snowy slopes of South Lake Tahoe. I couldn’t bear the thought of taking my fully loaded truck to the VA Hospital parking lot; however, I could bear the thought of unloading said truck even less.  In the morning the pain was lesser so I slept in a little, assuming the co-pilot would not arrive due to a lack of the customary hundred texts that accompanied normal adventures.  Something was up… So be it. I’d save some dough on the lunches and dinners at the Gentlemen’s Clubs, not to mention the salary.

Well before noon I was ready to roll but some business came up and I had to take care of it. That meant I would travel overnight.

I love to travel at night. As near as I can tell, Big Red loves it too. This particular drive along 395 I recommend on a full moon after it has recently snowed on the Sierras from just south of Mount Whitney, north to Bridgeport  The eerie blue-white light reflected off of the snow and ice of the Sierra Nevadas on your left, the White Mountains on your right and the frosty Owens Valley between is a sight that brings me pure joy. The reflected light is so bright that it seems like daytime on the moon and I, Captain Mr. F. Gentle Spirit in my (t)rusty bucket: Big Red, cruising along, seeking the word of God in pictures and feelings.

Several years ago I received a traffic ticket for driving without headlights on just such a night. The days before had seen heavy snowfall from the San Bernardino and San Gabriel Mountains (Near Los Angeles) all the way up to Oregon and everything was covered in snow, even some of the Mojave. I believe I was heading up to Tahoe for my level II PSIA Certification Test. This was before I acquired Big Red and I was still in command of that trusty steed, “Betty” a shiny, black Honda Element that is still the best handling vehicle I have ever driven in snow. Rest In Pieces Dear Betty! She was the victim of a red-light-running pickup truck on a smoky night in Reno while traveling Mt. Rose Highway to a gig at the El Dorado. I’m lucky to be alive after that unfortunate incident but that’s a story for another day. Anyway, I had basically driven from Big Bear all the way to Mammoth with hardly any headlights at all, the moon was blaring across the crystalline landscape and you really had to turn out your headlights to appreciate it.  Whenever I saw other traffic approaching I would turn my lights back on for safety reasons but it was very late at night and there was hardly anyone on the road (at least hardly any people with headlights on). I was really surprised that I had made it so far without any type of incident when I saw the silhouette of a CHP cruiser in the snowbank somewhere before Mono Lake. I knew I was pinched, why fight it? I turned on my headlights and pulled to the side of the road to wait for the cruiser to drive to the turnaround and come back.  It was a female officer. I thought I had it made! I would just tell the truth! It was beautiful! Surely a female officer would appreciate the grandeur and beauty of the Moonlit Majesty before us! I would tell the truth for my salvation!

She began to question me and I gave her my pie-eyed replies; an open and honest testimony of truth and beauty…

Her radio squawked.
She picked up the handset and into it revealed the murderer that she was…
She chortled, “Yeah, Uh, Suspect thought it would be a good idea to turn off his headlights so he could see better…
The radio squawked again.
“Yeah, roger that, unit ### is en route” more chortlingishlykinda.

Which basically meant, you want to get a look at this Moron before I send him on his way with a $400 ticket?

I’d do it again if I had the chance. But you know me… I drove all the way back to fight the ticket months later but that’s a story for another day…

Well, I would have given a months pay to have the luxurious Black Betty with her marvelous heater, silent operation and heavily amplified sound system last night because it was Winter Washoe Zephyr COLD!!! Not only does Big Red have no heater but she’s lacking any upholstery and most of her rubber door seals are rubber-ed away or long gone so the wind whistling through is the only song you’ll hear on that long, tired drive up the gut of California. I progressively donned every piece of gear I could get to in order to buffer from the encroaching frigidity as the night wore on and I incremented more Norther and Altitudinous through the night. The stabbing in my side was still reminiscing and I was tired as hell. The problem with a packed vehicle is that you can’t really sleep anywhere comfortably; and that’s exactly what I did… Sleep uncomfortably and cold. I wasn’t quite cold enough to go digging for more clothes but I was still cold enough not to be able to actually sleep. I tried this twice at different locations. Neither was productive. By the time I got to Bridgeport the sun was on the rise and my clothing count was way up.  I had draped a down jacket and Dale of Norway sweater across my legs, on my body I wore a heavy hoodie, a Patagonia Down Jacket, a Decente Down Jacket and a Descente Vest with a crazy yellow Beanie hat I picked up at Snow Jam last week. I was till freezing and falling asleep all over the road so I pulled out the last resort. I popped a Hydroxycut Hardcore Elite.  Within a half hour I was sweating all over the place and batshit crazy. I stopped in a Shell gas station that was charging almost 5 bucks a gallon and I had just purchased some fifty miles back for $3.72 a gallon. So I bought a bottle of water and used their bathroom and spent forty minutes in the mini-mart on the phone with the Co-Pilot who was supposed to be back in the office wondering where the hell Washoe was…

I made it to the Mountain Headquarters alive though chemically weird, emotionally drained and sleep deprived, so of course I decided to go skiing! Actually I took a nap and went to go buy everything I had forgotten in my haste and pain to pack. The place I’m renting this year is 80’s Chic with angular ceilings that stretch up to the ether and an entire wall that is a mirror, 20 feet high.  It’s only 5 minutes from the spot I’ll be teaching at this year in Heavenly. Call me if you want to take some lessons, I promise not to tell these stories to your kids!

The bed here looked to me like a King size bed but after going to the store and purchasing King Sheets and a fluffy, grand, king comforter, I realized that the bed is actually only a queen. From all of this I have learned one amazing thing. A queen bed looks AMAZING with a King size White comforter on it! Almost as lovely as Mt. Whitney in the winter on a full moon with the lights out…

Lights out! See you in the morning!

Capt. David Patrone of the Good Ship Grande Rojo.


Why you should be skiing the carpet!

The following is an article that was originally written for Edge Magazine, a publication that goes out to every certified professional ski & snowboard instructor in the Western Division and was written from the standpoint of an instructor but if you have any interest in improving your technique or introducing a child or a significant other to snow-sports this article is for you, especially if you live in Southern California. For those of you who only know me as an entertainer,  I am also a nationally certified alpine ski instructor and I teach every winter in South Lake Tahoe at Heavenly. If you live near San Diego, you may not know that one of the best tools for skiing and snowboarding is right here in Encinitas…

I only have one problem with the revolving carpet, alpine snow-sports simulator, carpet conveyor whatchamacallit…:

Adventure Ski School

One of the largest carpet ski decks in the world

What DO I call it?

In fact, most of my internal debate while writing this article has been about just that: what is the official name of this thing? The rest is a no-brainer. If you have the opportunity, you should be using this unique instructional tool.  If you would like to introduce your children or your significant other to this sport, and you live in Southern California, you’d be a fool not to use this before you go up to the mountain and if you want to refine your technique and condition specific muscle groups before the snow flies… keep reading.

The alpine snowsports-simulating, inclined, carpet conveyor belt is without a doubt the #1 training aid I have had access to in my skiing career. In my personal development as a skier and snowboarder and as a certified snowsports instructor, I can say unequivocally that having access to this machine has improved my technique and hones specific muscle groups more than any other single tool in this sport. For its ability to help me pinpoint errors in my skiing and enable learning in the best possible environment, there is nothing that can compare to it. For instructors, the value of this machine is unmatched on the mountain.

I’m not surprised when I hear resistance from some of my colleagues: that they either haven’t tried it or they can see no benefit from this strange contraption. I myself thought it nothing more than a novelty to enjoy on some sunny afternoon in Southern California when I first caught a glimpse of the mobile deck at a ski expo in Del Mar many years ago. Obviously I’ve changed my mind and all it took was about 5 minutes and a hell of an instructor by the name of Kent Bry.

A few years ago, after completing my PSIA L2 Alpine cert and Children L2 and Senior L2 certs I decided I would like to try out the simulator at Adventure Ski School in Encinitas (near San Diego) and asked the director, Kent Bry if he could use an extra instructor. I enrolled in his instructor training program and was blown away. I figured it couldn’t be very much like “real” skiing but it might be fun when I couldn’t get to the “actual” snow. I couldn’t have been more mistaken about the level of training I was about to get.

After a frustratingly slow introduction to the apparatus (Kent is nothing if not thorough and safe), I was immediately treated to the hideous sight of a hundred of my most hideous flaws, magnified in a huge mirror located conveniently in front of me. I was uncomfortable and clumsy on this moving surface and found that I had to focus intently on my edging, pressuring and steering if I was to remain upright. Conversely, children seem to pick it up right away on the carpet, newcomers to the sport do quite well on the ski deck.  Lazy habits I’ve developed that snow forgives are highlighted by the feedback from the synthetic surface. I had to get my weight completely in the front of my boots if I wanted the skis to engage the carpet properly and to maintain proper stance. My legs were burning in minutes and they became chiseled rocks by the end of instructor training. The carpet allows you to ride continuously without stopping; without waiting in a lift line, riding a lift or running into traffic. I took me about 15 hours of training on this carpet to be able to accomplish a true parallel turn, something I’ve been doing for many years on snow. There is no momentum or centrifugal force to help me match my skis. I HAD to flex and extend, I HAD to keep my hands up, I had to pole plant and I had to rotate my legs independently in my hip sockets! If I rotated my hips or upper body, the carpet took me for a ride! This was sort of like learning to ride a bike on a treadmill. Balance was essential! In two weeks I was able to achieve an understanding of feeling of my skis, boots and the fundamentals of skiing like I had never felt before. I began to REALLY UNDERSTAND!

Besides the obvious benefits to my own skiing and personal development, the simulator opened up unique ideas for teaching. I taught children and adults in Big Bear for 8 years and this will be my 3rd year as an instructor at Heavenly in South Lake Tahoe. At a resort, there are many obstacles to teaching that I had simply taken for granted, things I hadn’t even noticed as impediments because they were completely unavoidable, especially for beginners. For instance:

Students often come unprepared for the mountain environment (Clothing, altitude issues, cold, sun, etc)
It is very difficult to communicate to a student while they are focused on a new movement. (edge noise, wind, distance, ear coverings and freak out factor (FOF))
Ski Lifts are hard to use for a beginner (Beginning students must exert themselves ambulating up the mountain until they are proficient enough to take the lifts)
Bulky, cumbersome clothing (hard for them to move and hard for me to see their bio-mechanics)
Weather factors…
Difficulty providing useful demonstrations due to distance, noise, distractions, small ski area, chaotic environment, other beginners’ unpredictable movements etc.
Inability of the student to see their own body movements or the instructor for any useful comparison.
Poorly fitted, improper or outdated equipment.
Safety issues on crowded slopes or the environment in general.
Interruptions and constant monitoring for class management make service to the individual difficult.

Some of my PSIA colleagues would say, “That’s what it takes to be a good instructor, you have to be able to surmount those obstacles! You have to have a progression for each situation! You have to be adept at dealing with all of those factors!” and I wholeheartedly agree; however, what if we didn’t have to deal with those issues? Would that allow me to help the student learn more quickly and efficiently? Of course it would! As an instructor I’m not just trying to be efficient and effective in my teaching technique, I’m trying to help the student have fun! A great coach can do this in any environment. I’m not trying to supplant the resort instructor. Imagine being able to prep a private lesson months before the snow flies. Imagine being able to condition your students’ legs so that they are not sore on Day 2 or 3 of their expensive vacation (and don’t miss their second, full-day private lesson). Imagine establishing report with your clients (especially children) in a comfortable, non-threatening environment so that when you get to the slopes, you can move quickly into detailed, personalized instruction. Imagine taking video from a fixed position and providing a crisp picture of movement analysis with cogent audio that they can watch (and share with friends) from their computer or phone. For the price of one lift ticket your student gets to a competent ability level without driving hours to the resort in inclement weather, paying for gas, lodging, installing chains or dealing with frustrated kids (or adults) AND you get to create a continuing relationship for future lessons. You are able to completely prepare your students to be very successful when they get in the mountains and to love this sport like you do. I can’t think of any better way to do this!

I got back on the carpet again this year and worked out all the kinks in my skiing and boarding long before the snow fell. At Adventure Ski the guys are already giving lessons for a month before the resorts are scheduled to open. The students often come back from their vacation and say that they completely skipped the beginner lessons and were put in intermediate classes. These are adults and children who had never been on snow when they came to the carpet! Advanced skiers are coming back and reporting that they can feel what they’ve been missing all these years! Some of us instruct on the simulator AND at the resorts so we’re able to offer students many levels of service that other instructors simply can’t match!

I’m sort of embarrassed to tell this story but it really demonstrates another point. In my own skiing I saw phenomenal improvement, not only in my technique but in my understanding and feeling of how the skis are supposed to work. A couple of years ago I bought a really nice pair of used skis that were in great condition from an amazing instructor and racer in Big Bear. I skied them every day of that season. The next year, after training on the alpine simulator with their fully-adjustable skis, I knew the moment I got on my skis on real snow that there was something wrong! I took a look and it turns out that the bindings were installed almost four centimeters behind the center point! I’d been skiing them for two years and I never noticed because I never knew what it was supposed to FEEL like! Suddenly my skiing was coming together like it never had before and I am so grateful I’ve found such an amazing tool and machine that I can use year-round to refine my technique and keep up my fitness levels for specific muscle groups to skiing and snowboarding.

One last thing: The efficiency of training is unmatched due to the nature of the conveyor. 30 minutes on the conveyor is equivalent to 20 1.5 minute runs on a regular mountain minus lift lines, chair rides or human obstacles! Turn after turn is analyzed by your instructor and yourself in the mirror without ever having to stop. You can hear the instructions and they can demonstrate meaningful demos in a controlled environment. You never have to stop for a lift line so you ski or ride until your legs are burning and quivering!

In short, you’re missing out on your best year ever if you don’t try this machine out! If you want more information, call Kent Bry at Adventure Ski in Encinitas and schedule a training session at 760.942.2188 or check out http://www.adventureski.com and get the jump on everyone else!

Oh and one more thing, if you’re in Tahoe during the week, give me a call or email and I’d be jazzed to take some turns with you and show you around the mountain if I’m not coaching; or, I am available for private lessons through Heavenly Ski School’s website or call 1-800-HEAVENLY or (530) 542-5131 and tell them you want David Patrone to be your coach. Like my ski instruction facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/Learn2Ski

Your Personal Mountain Consultant,

The New Steadies and Gaslamp Ramblin’

David Patrone goes Crazy

Like me on Facebook or I’ll Bite you!

From: The Desk of David Patrone
Overlooking the San Diego International Airport
To: The Benevolent Order of Patrones [BOoP]:

For those of you who remember the nights spent dancing on the bar at the old Martini Ranch downtown and the endless debauchery that stemmed from that unholy union of Patrone and the Martini dynasty, I offer you the comparison of Bootlegger and those dusky days of relentless pursuits and heedful debauch. Bootlegger has the square center bar like the old M.R. adding a stage, lights and marvelous fixtures.  Take a look at the intricate woodwork surrounding the bar when you get a chance. It’s slightly off-Gaslamp location means we avoid the frivolous amateur influx and are enjoying the company of tremendous excellence. The experienced staff know all the tricks and the players so you never know who you’ll meet but I guarantee it will be interesting. The menu is post-modern, continental fusion with a tickle of humor and a slap of delicious. The Decor is pre Frankline Delanoire and you may even find yourself sitting in. There’s even a hostel upstairs so… who knows and who cares?

I’m getting involved in several venues downtown right now so keep your eyes and ears handy. You might catch a pair of each on the flop…

The Gaslamp has been interesting lately…

Walking downtown tonight I was struck with the realization that the Gaslamp is evolving yet again. Maybe it takes me being away for a year or so to see it but the clubs are different now. Sure, the youthful ignorants have been cycled and replaced by new youths with the same faces, the same legs, the same revealing rags and drunken staggers.  The shops and the cafes are specific and targeted to demographics, the old places are iconic; (Croce’s, Patrick’s II, Lou and Mickey’s, Italian Row is what I call the western side of 5th between F and Market: Panevino, Bella Luna et al. Jimmy Love’s, Greystone, George’s, Henry’s Pub); the old-new places have settled in (Donovan’s, Stingaree, Sidebar, Palm, Double Deuce, Tipsy Crow, Voyeur, Whiskey Girl, Gaslamp Tavern, Marble Room, Fluxx, Stage etc) and new-new places are being opened each month by people that really know what they are doing: Seersucker, Bootlegger, Barleymash, Analog, Lincoln Room, McFadden’s, Cremolose, Block 16 etc…  Gaslamp is really coming back into it’s own and I got to watch the whole thing. When the ballpark came to San Diego, the Gaslamp was surging like this too but the ballpark ruined everything.  It congested traffic, drove regulars out and flooded the Gaslamp with a bunch of drunk sports fans who already had their fill of ballpark food and ballpark beer. It really sucked for a couple of years. Petco helped to destroy the Gaslamp District as we knew it pre-Petco; but, things have settled down and although traffic and the spillover crowd is horrible around Padres events, the downtown has evolved into something interesting again. If you haven’t been downtown in a while, it’s time for you to check out what’s new. East Village is growing and there are many excellent boutiques, salons and cafes. Check out the new Hat Shop by Ghirardelli on 5th and “A Style Concierge” next door.  I’m glad to be back and I’m thinking seriously of getting a crash pad in the Gaslamp and starting up the Speakeasy Radio Show yet again…

My suggestion is always to get there early and park at ”Park It On Market” or in the lot off of 8th and Market. That way it’s easier to get out of the downtown. Because of the expansion downtown I’m currently investigating the best places to park and other techniques for avoiding the hassle. Suggestions are welcome and I’ll be passing them along to the BOoP crew…

Here are the current steady gigs.

Every Thursday at Bootlegger 6-9pm, Pasta Mafia Thursdays at Bootlegger includes $12 endless pasta bowls from 6-10 and endless David Patrone from 6-9. This is excellent pasta too, endorsed by Mama Patrone herself! Join us EVERY Thursday as we provide live Jazz, $12 endless pasta bowls and a prohibition-themed spot at 8th and Market with interesting menu items, all of which are delicious. The bartenders, servers and customers are all beautiful and the launching pad from which I will be re-establishing my Gaslamp Presence.

I can also be found regularly at The Marble Room

Track Season in Del Mar at Jimmy O’s
Wednesday nights we’ll be putting on a great post-track show.  we Kick it off the night before Opening Day so get ready to be spending some great times in Del Mar We need your help though and here are three things to do that can help us to help you make San Diego a more entertaining place

3 things to do: 1. Download my app on your phone (link below) 2. Recommend our FB page to a friend (link also below) 3. Recommend this blog https://davidpatrone.wordpress.com David Patrone’s Official Blog which I’ll keep updated so as to keep you entertained even when I’m not entertaining 🙂

The 20 Year Storm

It was raining pretty hard in San Diego the other day and I even looked out for a moment and saw hail, a rare occurence in these parts of the country. It reminded me of a piece I wrote years ago when we were expecting a huge storm in San Diego so I revisited it, editied a little, and here she is.

September 21, 2007 0200 Thinking about the 20 year storm

I love the rain; yet, we rarely get it here in Southern California. I used to live in the Carolinas and I had a red, soft-top Jeep named “Lucille.” She was the first vehicle I had ever purchased, the first big purchase I ever made really; with my Marine Corps signing bonus and $1000 off for Gulf War veterans, I had a trusty steed to roam the low-country, as they call the coastal Carolinas; and a fitting name it is with swamps, sounds, bays and inlets fingering through everything, making a vehicle with a tight, turning radius and four-wheel-drive a must.

I worked the night shift, fixing A6-E Intruders, an aging aircraft which was being decommissioned from service. I was “boot” which means “newbie” as in “fresh from boot camp,” and being a “boot” in a squadron that had just returned from the First Gulf War, myself  and my fellow “boot” companions got the short end of all sticks while the saltier Marines prepared for their exit from “The Suck” as they had become fond of calling the Corps. Over the next six months I did all manner of things to those 12 aircraft from scraping rust and re-painting each entire aircraft to disassembling engines and repairing electronics in order to comply with the Marine Corps policy of returning things in better condition than when they received them (20 years ago).

During the days I would go to the beach in Lucille and surf or swing or tan or volley or chase fortune between the dunes in one way or another… It rained often.

It became one of my favorite things to drive on to the beach when it was raining and grab something to eat and let the rain just splatter all over the canvas roof of the Jeep while I watched the waves and ate and smoked unfiltered cigarettes in melancholy reverie of nothing in particular. I was a little too young to have much to melancholily reverize about anyway. There was something about sitting there, tugging on a Lucky Strike with nowhere to go, hardly any money, no one to talk to and just the World to watch.

I can sleep like a baby to the sound of the rain, even thunder. When I was a kid in Philly, our Mother used to take me and my little brother out on the porch to watch summer thunderstorms as though it were fireworks or something. I still feel the excitement when the storm is coming in, when the wind starts kicking up and I haven’t been paying attention. All of a sudden it reaches my consciousness that something is different. All of a sudden I realize, “It feels like rain!” and my Inner Indian Shaman rejoices in the discovery and the prediction. I’m suddenly a value to my tribe!  I’ve connected to the Mystic… I’m going to be OK because I have The Skill …

I remember the first time that happened, what a Boy Scout Moment that was. I was SAFE, valiant even!

I like to think that it happened to every boy. You’d be out playing in the fields or the woods and would feel the change; or, it had gotten so apparent that you’d finally notice… you look up as the leaves are turning, whitish, backwards in the wind and you feel the low crackle from the first thunderclap a couple of miles away.

“How many?” you wonder instantly.

You wait for the next flash to do the counting thing. You’re trying to remember what your Dad told you: was it five seconds per mile? seven seconds? We didn’t have Wiki back then, you had to go find someone’s Grandpa, but it was too late for that. The rain hadn’t started yet but it was close, you could feel the temperature dropping. Close… so close… you know you won’t get back to the house across the field/parlk/lot in time so you just stand and submit, arching your back and opening your mouth, searching for the first drop with your tongue as you hear drops slapping the leaves or patting on windshields around you until you’re in a full-on summer downpour.  You taste the rain. It tastes just like normal only somehow special/mystic/divine because it’s fresh and new and nothing has ever tasted this but you. You taste unity with the Earth, that other Mother, through this inert yet magic potion. Brain Scientists call it an “Alpha State.” The you is gone and the You-niverse is tangible around you while you are in it… You ARE it: a single drop of rain in a storm, being swallowed by a young boy in the summer.

“This is how heaven must taste,” you think… “just like normal, only somehow special.”


The Lame Winter

This has been a really crazy winter.  First of all, there has been almost no snow up in the mountains of Tahoe and it’s especially painful in contrast to last year’s record snowfall. I have been spending a lot of time in the Reno/Tahoe area this year since I arrived there off of the Pacific Crest Trail in July.  With so little snow I decided to take up a new sport: Hockey.

I’ve loved Hockey since I was a young boy. My father would have me taking slapshots in the kitchen with street hockey equipment and a net he had set up under the kitchen window. Many times my mother would be washing the dishes after dinner in our little rowhome in Northeast Philadelphia and one of my slapshots would bang off the window and she’d shoot daggers with her eyes across the tiny kitchen and our game would be terminated.

I was never much of a skater but I’ve taken to it recently and gotten quite adequate in the last few months. I’ve been playing in some pickup games and doing OK for a guy who only really started skating back in December. The training may have saved me some serious injury

A few weeks ago I was involved in a rather bad car accident while driving to Reno one night. There was a rather severe fire in the Washoe Valley and 395 was closed so I had to take an alternate route.  Little did I know, the power was out in South Reno and as I came down the mountain I had no way of knowing that all of the traffic lights were out. As I crossed over the intersection of Mt. Rose Highway and Wedge Parkway, a pickup truck appeared in front of me and I plowed into it to a dead stop from 50 MPH.  In retrospect I realize that there were about a hundred ways I could have died or been permanently maimed in that accident and only one way I could have survived intact which is exactly what happened. At the last millisecond I turned the wheel and that may have saved my life because it sent my car into a spin at impact, redirecting the force of the collision,  instead of sending my entire sound system, hockey equipment, bowling ball, speaker stands and skis from going through the back of my skull.

I sustained a few bruises from the seatbelt to my ribs and collarbone, whiplash and a separated shoulder but for the most part I was fine. The adrenaline kicked in and I forced open my door, jumped out of the car (which was dangerously located in the middle of the intersection) and running over to the other one in a few seconds to see if that driver was OK. He seemed alright and so I began cleaning up the street and wondering what the hell happened.

After a few days I felt moderately healed up and went back to hockey like a good Marine.

Bad idea.

I must have injured my ab muscles as well but didn’t’ know about it. I felt some issues in there but ignored them and ended up pulling something between my serratus and my external obliques on a slapshot and was reduced to a quivering little boy on the ice again. I can’t believe how much that hurt. I thought maybe I had dislocated a floating rib or something. I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t drive, I couldn’t… well, let’s just say that going to the bathroom was going to have to wait until it was absolutely necessary.  I’m still having issues a week later but it has definitely improved and I don’t think singing will be too bad.

I’m wondering what this means for the rest of my winter. I probably am done skiing in any serious way, which means no more training for my level 3 PSIA certification. There are hardly any customers on the mountain so I probably won’t have any classes to teach for the rest of the year. If I don’t get my L3 I won’t be going to teach in Chile; so, it hardly seems like staying in Tahoe is a good idea since things are heating up in San Diego and I have a bunch of gigs coming up in SoCal…

I’m not sure what’s going to happen but there are a few things in the works including a new radio show with my buddy Jeff and a new burlesque project that I’m trying to make happen. I’m putting together some interesting stuff for Burning Man this year and I’ll be in Vegas in a couple of weeks for a special Burning Man event there.

Either way, I just wanted to let you guys know that I’m OK and I’ll be back in San Diego on a more permanent performing basis soon.