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Don Rickles is a Big Baby!

{mosimage}FRIDAY, May 25

You don’t have to wear your wetsuit to the Aquarium of the Pacific’s new “Catch a Wave” exhibition, but it would make you look pretty cool. You’ll emerge either eager to hit the waves or vowing never to go near them. Along with a tsunami exhibit, you can have a “Surfing Experience” at a multimedia show and view the evolution of the surfboard. Also, “Surf Culture Film Series” starts in July. The Aquarium of the Pacific, 100 Aquarium Way, Long Beach; May 25-March 31, 2008; $20.95, $17.95 seniors, $11.95 children. (562) 590-3100.

SATURDAY, May 26

Where have all the hippies gone? Topanga Days, one of your hairier three-day, laid-back musical gatherings that’s heavy on the Indian print skirts and Hula-Hoops, has gone... indie rock? Say it ain’t so!

Saturday’s lineup is strictly for a more Silverlakian crowd, with Veruca Salt, Chevy Metal, Mini Bar, Spindrift and others. Things turn more California country on Sunday with John Doe, Pamela Des Barres and the Sin City All Stars. Finally, Monday is more what you expect from Toe-pain-go with Cecilia Noel & the Wild Clams, Venice, the Young Dubliners and bands that feature former members of Little Feat. As always, there’s an expansive kiddie area, belly dancers, Hula-Hoopers and dudes with beards and sunburns. Oh — and a parade on Monday. Topanga Community House Fair Grounds, 1440 N. Topanga Canyon Blvd., Topanga; Sat.-Mon., May 26-28, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; $15, $7 children & seniors, under 5 free. www.TopangaDays.com.

SUNDAY, May 27

If you’ve ever been to the Plaka in Athens, you know that it is packed with all the best in Greek sights, tastes and smells. It can get oppressively crowded, is what I’m trying to say. Keep reminding yourself that at the Valley Greek Festival. It’s held at a way-too-small-for-50,000-people location bursting with booths selling Mediterranean cuisine, plus live music, dancing, shopping and more. No donkey rides, though. St. Nicholas Church, 9501 Balboa Ave., Northridge; Sat.-Mon., May 26-28, 1 p.m.-9 p.m.; free. (818) 886-4040.

MONDAY, May 28

Brave soldiers died so that others could lift heavy objects and make their biceps look like a bag of oranges. Honor them at The Muscle Beach Venice International Classic. God bless America. Venice Beach Recreation Center, 1800 Ocean Front Walk, Venice; Sun.-Mon., May 27-28, noon (finals Mon. at noon); free, $50 to compete. (310) 399-2775.

TUESDAY, May 29

Some things you just have to trust. If the Hammer Museum presents An Evening of Funny Films, as part of its “Video Sphinx” series, with screenings of comedic shorts by such artists as the Yes Men, Ant Farm, Brian Boyce, Susan Mogul and B&T, among many others, you can pretty much bet this will not be a waste of your time. Unless you were planning on going to see Delta Farce, then this will probably be a big waste of your time. The Hammer Museum, 10899 Wilshire Blvd, Wstwd.; Tues., May 29, 7 p.m.; $5, $3 seniors. (310) 443-7000.

WEDNESDAY, May 30

Also from the just-trust-us-and-go dept.: You’re Welcome happens every Wednesday at M Bar. This week, it’s Matt Besser, Todd Womack, Brian Finklestein, Natasha Leggero, Johnny Pemberton, Cynthia Levin, Jacob Siroff and Anthony Jeselnik. Promises: It’ll definitely be better than staying home and watching Dancing With the Stars. M Bar, 1253 N. Vine St., Hlywd.; Wed., May 30, 8 p.m.; $5. (323) 856-0036.

THURSDAY, May 31

Note the perfectly round, smooth bald head, the cherubic, squeezable cheeks, the wide, goofy grin and supple little double chin. What do you bet that Don Rickles today probably doesn’t look much different from Don Rickles the baby (see accompanying photo illustration)? On the first page of Rickles’ new memoir, Rickles’ Book: A Memoir, is this: “I was desperate for any kind of female — a dog, a horse: anything.” The liner blurbs are by Jackie Collins, Bob Newhart and Suzanne Somers. But why didn’t he call it, Buy This Book, You Hockey Puck!? You can ask him when he presents and signs at Book Soup. Book Soup, 8818 Sunset Blvd., W. Hlywd.; Thurs., May 31, 7 p.m.; free, book is $24. (310) 659-3110.


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