FRIDAY, December 2
Fab-u-luss! It’s that all-too-short time of year known as Divine Design, the remarkable fashion and interior design charity event benefiting Project Angel Food, which features huge discounts on a hangar’s worth of fashion and accessories by well-known designers, a bigger-than-ever Home Marketplace, plus an opening-night gala featuring dinner, “a live fantasy auction” and, of course, celebrity presenters. Barker Hangar, Santa Monica Air Center, 3021 Airport Ave.; Fri.-Mon., Dec. 2-5, 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; $25 ($15 in advance). (323) 851-9933 orwww.angelfood.org.
Why do certain civilizations disintegrate? And where can I meet people fascinated by evolutionary science who also like a good beat? Jared Diamond explored the issue in Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed, which inspired the Natural History Museum’s “COLLAPSE?” exhibition. For the museum’s NHM First Fridays: Different Lands, Global Issues, Diamond gives a talk, along with John Merson, Peter Gleick and Peter Sellars. Somehow, the discussion period will get you all hot and ready for some throbbing dance-floor action with Dublab DJs Carlos Nino and Hoseh, plus performances by Kinnera Taiko, Rocky Dawuni and the Rebirth. The Mammal Halls of the Natural History Museum, 900 Exposition Blvd.; Fri., Dec. 2, 7 p.m.-1 a.m.; $15, includes admission to “COLLAPSE?” (213) 763-DINO orwww.nhm.org.
SATURDAY, December 3 When I heard that Chris Farley had died, my first thought was, “Why, God, why? Why not take Adam Sandler instead?” Farley’s former Saturday Night Live castmate Tim Meadows is among the super-secret talent (read: they have no idea who else will be there) taking part in a Chris Farley Tribute. This we do know: Comics will tell Farley stories, and improv groups will perform sketches based on the content of the stories. It’s all to benefit the Chris Farley Foundation, which teaches kids about the dangers of drug and alcohol addiction. There will also be a short ceremony at Farley’s star outside the theater. IO West, 6366 Hollywood Blvd.; Hollywood; Sat., Dec. 3, 8 p.m.; $10. (323) 962-7560.
SUNDAY, December 4 It’s pronounced Khan-ay, which, if you went to film school, you already know. If you didn’t go to film school, you have probably never used “mise-en-scène” in a sentence, either, so good for you. American Cinematheque presents a rare screening ofMondo Cane that “enters a hundred incredible worlds where the camera has never gone before!” It’s a freak show of documentary, with scenes of odd customs and rituals. Examples: Rudolph Valentino impersonators; people making dog soup and eating bugs; naked bodies as paintbrushes, and, of course, Japanese farmers giving cows massages and beer. Egyptian Theater, 6712 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; Sun., Dec. 4, 6 p.m.; $9. (323) 466-FILM.
MONDAY, December 5 Not everything Dorothy Parker wrote was so damn witty or urbane. Like this: “Men seldom make passes/At girls who wear glasses.” Anyway, Angela Lansbury heads a staged reading of This is on Me: An Evening of Dorothy Parker, along with Victor Garber, Frances Conroy, Lisa Banes and Harriet Harris. It’s a benefit for the Acting Company and makes for a perfect evening for you and the droll, alcoholic thespian in your life. Brentwood Theater, 11301 Wilshire Blvd.; Mon., Dec. 5, 7 p.m.; $25-$500. (213) 365-3500.
TUESDAY, December 6 Actresses who play ditzy rarely are. Teri Garr, whose credits date back to guest starring on Dr. Kildare in 1965, has had one of the more fascinating careers in Hollywood, dancing in nine Elvis Presley movies and going on to star in Tootsie, Close Encounters of the Third Kind and — applause, please — Young Frankenstein. She was even in Head, the psychedelic freakout with the Monkees. On Tuesday she’ll read from and sign her new book, Teri Garr: Speedbumps, all about her career and her current battle with MS. Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd.; Tues., Dec. 6, 7:30 p.m.; $15, $8 students. (866) 468-3399.
WEDNESDAY, December 7 It must be jam ’cause jelly don’t groove like dat! Or something. Ex-Phish man Trey Anastasio fills your noggin’ with noodlin’ and everyone goes home happier than they should be. The Wiltern LG, 3790 Wilshire Blvd.; Wed., Dec. 7, 8 p.m.; $38. (213) 480-3232.
THURSDAY, December 8 On Thursday, the Good Lord said, “Laugh and be simultaneously hip.” And so he created The Underground Lounge wherein the streets around The Improv are suddenly inundated with crappy old cars and people who smell like a thrift shop. This Underground Lounge is a doozy, and at only 5 bucks, it comes out to about nine cents a laugh (or maybe $2 per laugh if you count the two-drink minimum). Enjoy possible comic genius Maria Bamford (see The Comedians of Comedy), Paul F. Tompkins, Hard ’n’ Phirm and Sari Karplus. The Improv, 8162 Melrose Ave.; Thurs., Dec. 8, 10:30 p.m.; $5. (323) 651-2583.