Cosby, Grossology, Writers in the Schools, Vera Project Auction, Zines, and Kate Simko

ComedyBill CosbyConsidered one of the greatest stand-up comedians of all time, Bill Cosby has spent the last several years making headlines for being decidedly unfunny. In short, he thinks black culture in America needs to clean up its own backyard—not the sort of message most blacks in America warm to very quickly. It's a testament to Cosby's godlike status in the community that wading into such racially charged waters hasn't screwed with his entertainment career. But the real reason to see the Jell-O man in action is to see what awesomely gaudy "Cosby sweater" he'll pluck from his wardrobe before each show. Will it be the pink, purple, and silver cable knit with a lion on the front? The lavender and black checkerboard number with the random lightning bolt pattern down the left side? Or the tan wool standby featuring a fox hunter in tall black boots astride a buffalo? Do they take wagers on this sort of thing in Vegas? Bill Cosby will perform two shows tonight. Benaroya Hall, Third Avenue and Union Street, 215-4747, $25–$70. 4 and 8 p.m. MIKE SEELYScienceGrossologyIf everyone in your office is sniffling, consider taking a Tour du Nose at the Pacific Science Center's new exhibit, "Grossology," which illustrates how your immune system works—via snot and mucus—to get you healthy. Called the most complex machine ever designed, the human body, in all its impolite glory, is the subject of this show. Interactive exhibits explain how your body functions—to put it simply, why you burp, fart, and sneeze. A pinball bounces between bumpers illustrated with gas-causing foods (high score: fart?), kids ride down a slide representing the gastrointestinal tract, and there's an outsize model of human skin to climb. You'll encounter a "burp machine" that, given the right stimulus, actually belches. A collaboration with teacher and microbiologist Sylvia Branzei, author of Grossology, this exhibit flouts our squeamishness to teach kids (and accompanying adults) what our bodies are doing when (pardon me) they do what we'd rather they didn't.Pacific Science Center, Seattle Center, 200 Second Ave. N., 443-2001, www.pacific $7–$10. 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Mon.–Fri., 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Sat.–Sun. Ends May 6. ADRIANA GRANTReadingWriters in the SchoolsThis Seattle Arts and Lectures program plants writers in residence in 21 public schools. Today's reading showcases what has grown during the fall semester among the students in Seattle, Renton, and Tukwila. The program produces beauties such as this piece, Hope, by Jaydn Brown of Maple Elementary: "Hope. Hope is something in you, not something you buy at a grocery store on 21st Ave. Hope is something you have from birth, not something you find on the streets. Hope looks like a dog prancing around with pride. Hope grows strong when times go bad. Hope is happy, not bad. Everyone has it. Don't try to hide it." Go see what else the students have done. Elliott Bay Book Co., 101 S. Main St., 624-6600, 2 p.m. JOANNE GARRETTMusic/CommunityViva Vera Auction Attention high-rolling patrons of the all-ages music community! The Vera Project's Viva Vera fund-raising campaign is coming to a quick close, having raised $1,255,119 of its aimed-for $1.8 million, for the venue/community space's new home (including 300-capacity venue, art gallery, recording studio, and screen printing studio) at Seattle Center. Tonight's gala is a chance to throw a few major bills, if you've got 'em, to the org in exchange for dinner, drinks, a performance from the Long Winters' John Roderick, and, of course, the auction. The wildly disparate items up for bid include a private party at the War Room, skydiving packages, an African safari for two, studio time, vegan catering by Vera members Joshua Powell and Josh Ayala, and a week of job-shadowing with Sub Pop GM Megan Jasper. That, as they say, is priceless. Seattle Center, Fisher Pavilion, 305 Harrison St., 684-7200, $100–$1,000. 5:30 p.m. RACHEL SHIMP Literary Zine Symposium Whether you've made them, read them, or just seen them in the racks at Sonic Boom or on a band's merch table, if you're a culture vulture in the Northwest, you've likely seen a zine. If not, that's a homemade take on "magazine" which has innumerable stylistic forms. Our creatively rich section of the world has long been a hub for this kind of independently produced media, with the Portland Zine Symposium (now in its seventh year) and an immense collection at the Hugo House's Zine Archive and Publishing Project (ZAPP). A volunteer librarian at ZAPP, Abby Bass, proposed bringing zines to Seattle's Central Library last year. Teen services librarian Jennifer Bisson says that along with gathering community donations, Bass worked with a distro in Portland—which also supplied the Multnomah Public Library—to amass a seed collection for our downtown branch. They'll be available for checking out, but not in the catalog. "We'll see how it functions and if it's really a circulating collection. If it is, we'll put it in our budget next year and get more," said Bisson. Although ZAPP undoubtedly provides Seattle's largest selection of zines in its Capitol Hill library, the downtown library will serve a different, and much wider, audience. It opens for perusal today with a workshop called "Zines 101," an open mike where people can discuss their work, and a panel discussion that includes local zine-maker Lucy Morehouse (Ong Ong), Brad Beshaw (Confounded Books), Ellery Russian (zine buyer for Left Bank Books), and others who exemplify the spirit of DIY. Seattle Central Library, 100 Fourth Ave., 386-4636, Free. 2 p.m. RACHEL SHIMP Music Kate SimkoSub Pop, Barsuk, Suicide Squeeze, Dirtbag, Light in the Attic, Orac, Fourthcity: Seattle has its share of record labels both major and boutique. The latter is where its latest, Kupei Musika, fits in. Founded by Rafael Anton Irisarri last year, and offering up the minimal techno and tech- and microhouse sounds that have become popular in the local scene, Kupei's first full-length release is Detalles' Micros Mornings. Chicago's Kate Simko is one half of Detalles, along with Chilean producer Andres Bucci (they previously released an album together on the high-quality minimal imprint Traum). Micros opens with muffled, shuffled beats and the lazy energy of a rainy Sunday, followed with glistening, underwater melodies that will inspire dreamlike dancing. Quietly ecstatic (to borrow from Björk) and never boring, it sets a high standard for minimal (local and otherwise) in 2007. The release party features Simko live, with rowdier techno sets from Kristina Childs and Portland's SciFiSoul. The VIP Room (below Neumo's), 925 E. Pike St., 709-9467, $5. 9 p.m. RACHEL SHIMP

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