FRIDAY, January 18
Garden Groves finest. See Thursday. (Click to enlarge)
The Raise Hell for Molly Ivins Pots & Pans Protest to End the War in Iraq is a long-titled, multicity event worth breaking out your tinniest Teflon for. Before her death, columnist Ivins wrote, "Raise Hell... Hit the streets." So that's what we should do like giant angry toddlers. Signs and pots and/or pans will be provided if you don't bring your own. West Los Angeles Federal Building, 11000 Wilshire Blvd., L.A.; Fri., Jan. 18, noon-1 p.m.; free. (310) 450-5592.
SATURDAY, January 19
For as long as I've known publicist-about-town Steve Valentine and can you ever truly know a publicist? I had no idea he was once a semiprofessional dancer. Now he's launched Gay Ballroom, a same-sex ballroom-dance class the first of its kind in Los Angeles. International ballroom champion Christopher Beroiz leads beginners and semipros for the glide of their lives. Plummer Park, West Hollywood Community Center, 7377 Santa Monica Blvd., Room 6, W. Hlywd.; every Sat., 3-5 p.m.; $16. (323) 571-8003.
If you're more the hula type, you can take Leela's Hookie-Lau Hula Workshop and hula your way home. CSU San Bernardino Performing Arts Building/Ronald E. Barnes Theater, 5500 University Pkwy., San Bernardino; Sat., Jan. 19, call for resv. & workshop schedule; $25, $20 in advance. (909) 863-9020.
There will be no dancing on Esotouric's Blood & Dumplings Crime Bus Tour, but you will learn all about the Man From Mars bandit and discover the bloody past of El Monte's American Nazi Party members. Also promised: "midcentury trailer parks... a very strange story about ducks" and, yes, dumplings enjoyed picnic-style in Monster Park. Meet at Lincoln Heights/Cypress Park Gold Line Metro station; Sat., Jan. 19, 1-5 p.m.; arrive by 12:30 p.m.; $60, includes food. www.esotouric.com.
SUNDAY, January 20
Who said "It was all luck and it all started with that radio piece. If it wasn't for that, I'd probably still be cleaning apartments as a maid in New York"? If you answered "David Sedaris," you probably already have your tickets to David Sedaris: Black Box Readings. He'll be workshopping new material in a small space, so it's kind of like being at a Bob Dylan rehearsal. Except you can understand what Sedaris is saying and you have to pay for it. Coincidentally, that same night I will be "workshopping" raw blurbs from my upcoming book. Macgowan Little Theater, UCLA, Wstwd.; Sun., Jan. 20, 7 p.m.; $50. Also Tues.-Fri., Jan. 15-18, 8 p.m.; Sat., Jan. 19, 2 & 8 p.m. (310) 825-2101.
MONDAY, January 21
The employees of the Queen Mary have been boning up on their Klingon to prepare for Star Trek: The Tour. We'll let the press release do the talking: "An interactive, action-packed experience, Star Trek: The Tour will feature exhibits from all five TV shows and each of the 10 movies. The Tour will provide a unique opportunity to experience Star Trek up close and personal with sets, props and models, motion-simulator rides, merchandise and more... the chance to sit in Captain Kirk's chair from the Original Series set on the Enterprise bridge. But that's just the beginning. Captain Picard's quarters are also on hand for you to see and experience, as well as the Enterprise-D bridge, and Dr. Crusher's sickbay."Queen Mary, Long Beach; Jan. 18-Feb. 17; Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., 10 a.m.-10 p.m.; $35, $30 weekdays; $17.50 children, $16 weekdays. (213) 480-3232.
TUESDAY, January 22
How to ruin your love of music. Attend Listen Again: Music You Should Change Your Mind About Right Now. Even the title is a turnoff. A gaggle, a herd, a flock (what is the correct term for a group of rock journalists? One colleague suggests a "bitter") of music writers will have five minutes each to talk the audience into reconsidering some forgotten pop. Better idea: Listen to Stella and Reverend Dan on KXLU this Friday playing music that needs no thesaurus-hugging hyperbole. Just kidding, this really sounds great. Some cool people we know will be there. I just wish they had asked me, because I have an entire PowerPoint presentation proving that without Supertramp there would be no Flaming Lips. REDCAT, 631 W. Second St., dwntwn.; Tues., Jan. 22, 8:30 p.m.; $8. (213) 237-2800.
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WEDNESDAY, January 23
"When you savor a Boonville Beer, you can savor the fact that you're drinking a solar-powered beer and helping protect the environment." Thank you, Boonville. And yes, we would love to attend the Anderson Valley Beer Tasting. Whole Foods, 760 S. Sepulveda Blvd., El Segundo; Wed., Jan. 23, 5-7 p.m.; $5. (310) 333-1900.
THURSDAY, January 24
What's the best thing to come out of Garden Grove? No, it's not the Crystal Cathedral, or even Sublime. That honor goes to Steve Martin. Ladies and gentlemen, Steve Martin and Carol Burnett discuss comedy for the Writers Bloc series. Wilshire Theatre Beverly Hills, 8440 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills; Thurs., Jan. 24, 7:30 p.m.; $20. (213) 628-8141.