This Week's Day-By-Day Picks

 Thursday, May 6

Spanish television, especially the telenovela, has always held a certain magic for us, from the zany, over-the-top, stick-on-moustaches of late-night love follies to the dazzlingly tragic Te Amare En Silencio, starring the multitalented former Miss Brazil USA Ana Carolina. American soaps just aren't for us. We desire the crazed passion, the saucy language (even if we can't understand it) and extensive use of exotic-flower hair adornments found in the dramas of Univision and Telemundo. Carolina just might transfer her Sao Paulo flair into her small role in John Travolta's latest, The Punisher, but, before checking out the movie, fans of Silencio's Celeste can meet the classically trained dancer and actress at Blue (let's call it Azul, eh?), 1933 Elm St., on Thursday night. Call 214-880-0888.

Friday, May 7

Combo meal #1: Brave Combo plays the first tune of the Out to Lunch concert series.
Combo meal #1: Brave Combo plays the first tune of the Out to Lunch concert series.

We have an immense amount of self-pity as we sit in our high-walled cube with its scant view of a city with blissfully moderate temperatures capped off with blue skies and cottony tufts of cloud. Various excuses--something forgotten in the car, nic fits, placing a quick bet on the next wreck at Commerce Street and Central Expressway--keep us running out to grab a quick shot of vitamin D and a respite from an office of ringing phones. Starbucks and the Downtown Improvement District feel us. Thanks to them, this Friday kicks off the Out to Lunch Concert Series (free live music and an excellent picnic opportunity) at 1 p.m. This week, headliners of our own Dallas Observer Music Awards and recent guests on The Simpsons, Brave Combo, bring on the polka at the WFAA Plaza (Jackson at Market) for a brown bag lunch in the sun. Future acts at various locations include Janie Fricke, Café Noir and Vince Vance & the Valiants. Visit www.dowtowndallas.org or call 214-744-4819.

Saturday, May 8

If there's one group of people we loathe, it's those who shit on unconditional love. If this were our dream world, there'd be no need for animal rescue groups as the aforementioned defecation would never occur. There'd be no abandonment, no abuse, no lazy pet care and every pet would be spayed or neutered just like Bob Barker says they should. But it's not a perfect world, so thankfully we have groups like the North Texas Scottie Rescue to help provide medical treatment, altering, socialization and more for abandoned and homeless Scotties. Since they are completely reliant upon donations and adoption fees, the NTSR hosts on Saturday the Fourth Annual Fala Day, honoring FDR's beloved and presidential Scottie dog, to raise funds for its efforts. Dog day festivities are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Vandergriff Park, 2801 Matlock Road in Arlington, and feature a parade of rescues, a Fala look-alike contest, tallest ears contest, a raffle and more. Admission is $5, and lunch combos and raffle tickets are $2 each. Log on to www.northtexasscottierescue.com/faladay.html.

Sunday, May 9

If you forget, you're toast. And you'll have a mother of a guilt trip on the horizon. We'll be plain: Sunday is Mother's Day. Remember: Mom, the woman who reared, Mama, Mommy, Mother? Payday this week or no, you'd better have a thoughtful gift in hand (or a finger on the dial for long-distance madres). Seeing as how we usually have an average of negative $3 at the end of our two-week pay period, we've done the research to find a sincere gift that leaves the bank account fairly happy. It's Whole Food's Whole Body Mother's Day Celebration at the Preston and Park location in Plano. Take Mom to the cafe for a treat, then head over from noon to 4 p.m. for free consultations and makeovers by reps for the natural cosmetics lines featured in the Whole Body department. Make sure the woman gets pampered, has some free samples in hand and perhaps a fresh flower in the other. Do that and you're golden. Now we just have to find what the hell to do for Pops in June. Call 972-612-6729.

Monday, May 10

When we were 17, we got jobs at coffee shops and record stores, but, apparently for aspiring writers and musicians, we had the wrong idea. If we were smart, we would have gotten a well-paying job writing for adult publications as did the hero/bagboy of Dear Pillow, the first feature after a string of short films by University of Texas grads Bryan Poyser and Jacob Vaughan. Thanks to successful screenings at the 2004 Slamdance International Film Festival and at the SXSW Film Festival, the Video Association of Dallas picks up this native gem for show in the Texas Filmmakers' Series on Monday at the Angelika Film Center at Mockingbird Station. Show time for the tale of teenage ambition is 7 p.m., and tickets are $8 ($5.50 for students and seniors). This film is not yet rated. Call 214-841-4700.

Tuesday, May 11

About 50 years after starting a publishing empire tinged with a hint of blue, Hugh Hefner can still keep it up...literally. The man's got professional and personal stamina the men of the world envy. Of course, it could also be his multitude of Playmate girlfriends. To celebrate five decades of centerfold success, Chivas Regal and Michelob Light present Playboy's 50th Anniversary Club Tour. A replica of Hef's round bed, Playboy memorabilia and, yes, even a few Bunnies are on a cross-country tour hitting the D on Tuesday. Take a photo with past and present Playmates and enjoy a live performance (details are top secret and definitely for those 21 and up). VIPs get a special pre-party with the mag's girls and free beverages. Now if only Hef would show up and offer these Dallas boys some tips on their post-party technique. (But that's as likely as Playboy doing a "Ladies of Alternative News Weeklies" issue. We're not holding our breath.) Debauchery ensues at 7 p.m. for VIPs and 8 p.m. for general admission at Blue (how appropriate), 1933 Elm St. Tickets are $65 and $146. Call 1-800-919-6272 or check out www.tickets.com.

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