San Diego Icon To Be Honored For 80th Birthday During Slomo Day On Saturday, April 8

March 25, 2023

San Diegans are invited to come out to the beach for Slomo Day on Saturday, April 8, in honor of local icon Dr. John "Slomo" Kitchin on his 80th birthday. 

In honor of Dr. John "Slomo" Kitchin's 80th birthday, the San Diego community is invited to dress up in their best Slomo-style attire and gather for a joint skate, bike, walk, etc., down Ocean Front Walk between Pacific Beach and Mission Beach on Saturday, April 8, 2023. This all day celebration is open to anyone and everyone, just head out to the beach and participate, and when you see Slomo, be sure to wish him a happy birthday.

In San Diego, CA, Slomo is an iconic figure, as he spends his days skating down beach-side Ocean Front Walk doing a form of Tai Chi on roller blades, in slow motion, and to a soundtrack. Usually, he is wearing a bucket hat, blue tanktop, Bermuda shorts, his safety pads, roller blades, and of course his music. The young locals yell out his moniker "Slomo!" as he wistfully glides by blaring music (mostly classical) from his on-person speakers. In a beach town filled with characters, Slomo is the king of them all.

"Slomo" is actually the alter ego of Dr. John S. Kitchin, M.D., a retired San Diego neurologist trained in psychiatry. Before he was Slomo, John Kitchin was a neurologist and psychiatrist. He even owned a 30 acre ranch at one point with a petting zoo, and started a nonprofit foundation to bring children to visit the animals. The foundation of his rollerblade skills was a longtime affinity for downhill skiing. Kitchin suffers from prosopagnosia, an affliction that makes it difficult to recognize faces. He believes his uncanny balance might be a compensation for his visual disorder. 
In 1998, Kitchin retired from medicine. He already had taken to skating with headphones at Dana Junior High School in Point Loma. He began to see slow-motion gliding to music as a portal to religious ecstasy.  He moved into a "monastic" studio a half-block from the boardwalk and took to skating the length of the boardwalk seven days a week. Naturally, his family worried about him.

Kitchin wondered if his obsession with oceanfront skating might be the manifestation of a psychological breakdown, fueled by the heady essence of the boardwalk.   Years later, those fears have dissipated into the morning mist. He spends his days writing, creating art, mixing music and, of course, dressing in the Slomo outfit and skating for hours into the cosmos.  Kitchin uses the Slomo character as a sort of meditation device/social experiment.   Kitchin's philosophy of "the Zone," is where Slomo lives and where he meditates on eternal questions. 

Kitchin has embraced the stardom of his Slomo alter ego.  His Slomo T-shirts, bumper stickers, postcards and self-published books – "The Trial of Slomo," "Slomo and the New World," and "Portraits in Slomovision" – sell briskly at the Swings n' Things at the Crystal Pier in Pacific Beach (as well as on  He is the loved mascot of the beach community although most people do not know anything about him. 

For more information on Slomo Day, visit