The Smart Set is a weekly feature, compiled by Lauren Cerand, that appears Mondays and highlights the best of the week to come. Special favor is given to New York’s independent booksellers and venues, and low-cost and free events. Please submit details to firstname.lastname@example.org, with the date of the event in the subject line.
First, a SPECIAL announcement for LA READERS: Mark Sarvas did something extremely cool a while back, and you can experience the results for yourself in person tonight. Noted, “in my first class, when I asked them what sort of things they wanted to write about, more boys than not expressed their interest in examining relationships. And the stories tackled the realities of their lives – of violence, of drugs, of gangs but also of pain and loss and loneliness. As well as the sort of themes that attract any teenage boy – popularity, friendship and, of course, girls.” Of course, girls. Hear the results tonight as Spoken Interludes/Wordsville presents a reading of fiction by at-risk boys from the Rancho San Antonio residential treatment facility. At Borders Westwood, 360 Westwood Blvd in Los Angeles. 7:00pm, free. Highly recommended — no, essential. New Yorkers who are feeling left out this evening: definitely check out Happy Baby if you haven’t yet.
MONDAY, 7.25: Monday morning pop quiz: “Defined by a certain otherworldly worldliness, they cannot fail to charm us with their exceptional wit, creepy nascent adulthood, and uncommon ability to read the hidden intentions of witless grown-ups.” Who is the reviewer describing – authors, editors, agents, critics, or preternaturally intelligent children like the protagonist of Dana Adam Shapiro’s debut novel, The Every Boy? Project away as the Murderball director reads from his latest at The Half King tonight. 7:00pm, no cover.
TUESDAY, 7.26: Wall Street Journal online editor Bill Grueskin, Mediabistro editor-in-chief Elizabeth Spiers, and Blogads analyst Anthony Perry discuss The Revenge of Online Media with media critic Bryan Keefer [full disclosure: Bryan Keefer is my long-suffering boyfriend. As always, I’ll be the one in the front row with the blue handbag and the “acid wit.”] At Makor. 7:30pm, $15. And, if your preference for professional bright young things extends into slightly more risque terrain than bloggers discussing trends in new media, there is always the Belle du Jour & Butterfield 8 double-feature at Symphony Space. 6:00pm, $10.
WEDNESDAY, 7.27: I may not take advantage of every opportunity to really savor it, but I never forget How to Kick People. 7:30pm, $8. Also, The Kettle of Fish reading series presents Elisa Albert, Raina Marie Kelly, and Judy Sheehan. The Kettle of Fish is located at 59 Christopher Street. 7:00pm, no cover [via Living With Legends: The Hotel Chelsea blog].
THURSDAY, 7.28: Given that I abhor crowds, most live music venues, and well, quite a few other things, I probably won’t make it out for this one, but … if I were feeling less Grey Gardens than usual, I’d go see Antony and the Johnsons at Town Hall. For sure.
FRIDAY, 7.29: Mariko Mori performs at The Kitchen. 7:00pm, free. Highly recommended. And, my friend Ana Asensio will be at the New York Latino Film Festival on Friday night, as a short film she starred in called “Julieta and Ramon” screens in the “Sexual Tension” program. At the Lighthouse Theater, 111 East 59th Street. 9:00pm, $10. Also on Friday, the editors of Rode Hard, Put Away Wet, join contributors to read from the “collection of lesbian cowboy erotica,” at Bluestockings. 7:00pm, free.
SUNDAY, 7.31: Sunday Movie Nights in Red Hook sounds divine. And perhaps not divine, per se, but no less important, there is a small but powerful exhibition on at the Neue Galerie that should be considered required viewing — War/Hell: Master Prints by Otto Dix and Max Beckmann. The show is nicely contextualized with highlights from the German Expressionist, New Objectivity, and Bauhaus movements in adjacent galleries. Through September 26.