The Weekly Wire: The Week's Recommended Events

WEDNESDAY 2/9 Books & Booze: Cabin Boy Magnolia writer Sam Howe Verhovek has worked as a correspondent for both The New York Times and Los Angeles Times, was an early Glee devotee, and recently authored Jet Age: The Comet, the 707, and the Race to Shrink the World (Avery, $27), about the dawn of commercial jet aviation. Verhovek's not one to hog good fortune, however; he's agreed to donate to Richard Hugo House a portion of the proceeds from every book he sells after tonight's happy-hour reading. Grim's, a Pb Elemental-designed marvel of rugged reclaimed materials, will also donate a portion of the proceeds from every Comet Cocktail it concocts. What's a Comet Cocktail? As detailed in Jet Age, it was the signature drink on de Havilland's Comet, the pioneering British passenger jet. It consists of brandy, yellow grapefruit juice, Van Der Hum (a tangerine-flavored South African liqueur), a dash of Angostura bitters, and a sliver of lemon peel. Hopefully, Verhovek will don an ascot while he reads so as to outclass Peter O'Toole, who's sure to fly in for the occasion. Grim's, 1512 11th Ave, 324-7467, Free. 5 p.m. MIKE SEELY THURSDAY 2/10 Sex: The Hot Side of 40 Blogger Pamela Madsen shares a lot—perhaps overshares—in the title of her new memoir, Shameless: How I Ditched the Diet, Got Naked, Found True Pleasure . . . and Somehow Got Home in Time to Cook Dinner (Rodale, $24.99). At first glance, the story of an unsatisfied professional woman realizing she has the desire to be desired again sounds like just another tome on the long shelf of women's sexcapades, like an NC-17 version of Elizabeth Gilbert. However, Madsen's story is different. First, she's a certified sex and fertility educator; second, she doesn't go running off to Asia to find herself, she stays home with her husband and kids. (As a result, thank God, we'll be spared the Julia Roberts movie version.) Madsen's is a humorous, plus-size story of a woman learning to love herself. And her body. And of course sex—which you don't have to be young and skinny to enjoy. Babeland, 707 E. Pike St., 328-2914, Free. 6 p.m. LAURA EASLEY Music: Behind the Hits Rodney Crowell has lived a Nashville dream life. He was a member of Emmylou Harris' Hot Band in the '70s, wrote Grammy-winning songs covered by Willie Nelson and others, and was even married to Johnny Cash's daughter, Rosanne, all while maintaining his reputation as a creator of smart country songs fusing pop sensibilities with a reverence for tradition. Most recently, Crowell set aside his guitar and composed a memoir, Chinaberry Sidewalks (Knopf, $24.95), focusing not on his long career but on his Texas upbringing. In straightforward, wry, and sometimes colloquial language, Crowell wrestles with memories of his religious, epileptic mother and musical, self-destructive father. As a portrait of poverty and broken dreams in the South, Crowell's book ranks alongside Rick Bragg's All Over but the Shoutin' and Harry Crews' A Childhood: The Biography of a Place for its clarity and honesty. For his one-man show tonight, expect Crowell to play #1 songs like "'Til I Gain Control Again" and "Long Hard Road" between recollections from his masterful book. The Triple Door, 216 Union St., 838-4333, $23.50-$25. 7:30 p.m. BRIAN J. BARR FRIDAY 2/11 Film: The Wrong Man Visiting film scholar Eddie Muller will introduce nightly double features in SIFF's Noir City series. First up is High Wall (Robert Taylor is mistakenly sent to the nuthouse), followed by Stranger on the Third Floor. This 1940 picture starts like a standard wrong-man thriller: A young journalist's testimony sends a guy to jail, but his girlfriend has doubts about the supposed murderer. Then a neighbor has his throat slit just like the first victim. And who's that silent, creepy fellow with "big, protruding eyes" hanging around the neighborhood? Why, say hello to Peter Lorre, the said stranger whose presence haunts the journalist's conscience. In the film's centerpiece, a long German Expressionist dream sequence, this newspaperman imagines how he might be wrongfully convicted of murder, victim of an unjust court, lax judge, and snoozing jury. The criminal justice system becomes a nightmare; and only the elusive Lorre—that serene little goblin—has the power to restore things to right. (Through Thurs.) SIFF Cinema, 321 Mercer St. (McCaw Hall), 448-2186, $12. 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. BRIAN MILLER Dance: Mix and Meet The Lowdown is all about the mashup—a dance party masquerading as a dance performance, with multiple styles recombined under new identities. Onstage, choreographer Amy O'Neal first brings her signature combination of hip-hop and modern dance to a new work called Again, No Excuses, performed by her Amy O/tinyrage ensemble. Also on the bill: the Soulshifters (featuring members of the renowned Circle of Fire break-dance crew) and the Can Can Castaways, who blend the wink and nod of burlesque with contemporary dance forms. Altogether, the evening is a big mix of genres and influences. It concludes in the lobby with a dance party featuring DJs WD4D and PotatoFinger, a cash bar, and eats from Tom Douglas. Moore Theatre, 1932 Second Ave., 877-784-4849, $24 and up. 8 p.m. SANDRA KURTZ SATURDAY 2/12 Dance: Steps Across the Lake Eva Stone admits to being obsessed with modern dance, and the artist roster for her Chop Shop programs reflects that intensity—she gets an amazing collection of dancers and choreographers onstage in these shows. The original intent was to bring modern dance to Eastside audiences who don't want to cross the lake, but she's inspired a significant reverse commute for Seattle dance-watchers thrilled to see so many different artists on a single program. This year's buffet, Bodies of Work, includes her own Stone Dance Collective as well as Spectrum Dance Theater, Wade Madsen, Michael Rioux, Sonia Dawkins, Catherine Cabeen, and Zoe Scofield, among others. The Theatre at Meydenbauer Center, 11100 N.E. Sixth St. (Bellevue), 800-838-3006, $20–$25. 7:30 p.m. (Also: 3 p.m. Sun.) SANDRA KURTZ Art: Chains of Love It's all about love at this month's Georgetown Art Attack. At Fantagraphics, the Lovesick exhibit opens to feature the poison pens—and possibly poisoned hearts—of the Bureau of Drawers cartoonist collective. Those nursing broken hearts can drown their sorrows at 9 Lb. Hammer while listening to the Rat City Brass ensemble. If you want a reprieve from dating and romance, sit down and relax at the Seattle Design Center, where local artists address the problem of seating in The Chair Project. (Maybe something in plush red velvet?) And if you should meet a special someone while wandering among the other featured galleries, studios, bars, and something called the "Freakfest" (at the Mix, with life music, DJs, and burlesque), there's a way to hold onto them forever. Just head over to the Firelight Forge (in the Equinox building), where metal artist Andy Blakney will be demonstrating his blacksmithing skills. If you want to secure your new love, he'll be happy to link you together, permanently. Downtown Georgetown, Free. 6–9 p.m. BRIAN MILLER MONDAY 2/14 Valentine's Day: Tears for Ava If it weren't for those nettlesome public-health laws, the Benny would be filled tonight with cigarette smoke, bourbon fumes, and vintage perfume. Imagine the Stork Club or 21 during the mid-'50s. That's the era Michael Feinstein is celebrating with The Sinatra Project, a Valentine's Day concert of standards from Hoboken's prince of heartache. Because love, really, is inseparable from broken hearts. No matter how good you've got it, you'll eventually lose it—to death, dissatisfaction, or divorce. Take Ava Gardner, for instance. She and Frank dallied for years, cheated on their spouses, then finally married in 1951—soon after he co-wrote and sang "I'm a Fool to Want You," one of the rawest expressions of longing ever recorded on vinyl. But once together, Ava and Frank fought constantly, and their careers also pulled them apart. They separated by '53, divorced in '57. Accordingly, Feinstein will parse the Sinatra songbook from times both good and bad, singing standards like "I've Got a Crush on You," "I Remember You," "Fools Rush In," and "Time After Time," with introductory remarks before each number. Count your blessings if you've got a date. Benaroya Hall, 200 University St., 215-4747, $20–$86. 7:30 p.m. BRIAN MILLER

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