This Week's Day-By-Day Picks

Thursday, June 23

You have your Dick Heads, your Ben Dovers, your Willie Bangers, your Buster Hymens. But these days, it's quite possible the most unfortunate name to have is none other than George Bush. We're not sure if Martha Boone Mattia would necessarily agree, but she did interview George Bushes from across the states for her book Conversations With George Bush. On Thursday, Mattia will sign copies of her new release and discuss her findings from her search across America. What did the real Bushes have to say? You know, the ones who don't have speech writers. The signing and presentation begins at 7:30 p.m. at Barnes & Noble, 7700 W. Northwest Highway. Call 214-739-1124.

Friday, June 24

When we think of romantic experiments involving food, it's usually some dessert-oriented thing. You know, baking brownies together, eating strawberries at a picnic, whipped cream on...well, uh, whatever. Anyway, the point is that we rarely think, "Ooooh, Date Night: Beat the Heat With Entrée Salads!" Sur La Table's Molly Fowler has thought of it, though, and she's teaching couples the ways of shrimp and crab salad with basil dressing, marinated summer vegetable salad, gazpacho with tiny croutons and chocolate angel mousse pie. The romantic hands-on salad tossing can be done for $125 per pair Friday at 6 p.m. And, ladies, just tell him if he goes with you, you'll keep up the high-class cooking. (Don't worry. Central Market take-home fools 'em every time.) Sur La Table is located at 4527 Travis St. Call 214-219-4404.

Saturday, June 25

If there's a season to prove how much you love your pets, it's summer. The blistering heat demands that we shave coats, give ice water and report people who leave dogs in cars. Not to mention the heartworm-carrying skeeters requiring us to keep the pups and kits indoors and apply flea/mosquito preventatives. But the SPCA of Texasand Seed of Hope Community Outreach are helping make some measures a lot more affordable by providing a vaccination clinic with core vaccines plus rabies vaccine for only $17. Get microchipping for $20, free registration and a 10 percent discount on Heartguard heartworm preventative and Frontline flea preventative. For the cost of a dinner out, we can keep our furry best friends healthy. Please have dogs on leashes and cats in carriers when heading out to First Christian Church, 9100 Diceman St., from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. Call 1-888-ANIMALS and check out www.spca.org, where you can also find info on the SPCA of Texas and the Humane Society of the United States teaming up to provide free spay/neuter surgeries for select ZIP codes.

Sunday, June 26

Take all the Southern cuisine away, and we could deal. We might miss pecan pie at holidays, but we'd get over it. What we couldn't get over is if someone took away our beloved iced tea. We grew up on the sweet nectar, and we're not letting go. The Cultured Cup, 5346 Belt Line Road, celebrates National Iced Tea Month (seriously) with the Fourth Annual Iced Tea Contest on Sunday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Teas will be judged by a panel of food experts for a Judges Prize, and guests who purchase a raffle ticket are eligible to vote for the People's Choice Prize. Hmm, we love our iced tea, but now we're thinking that we've been missing out if there are enough variations to require voting. Apparently there's more to iced tea than Luzianne. Proceeds benefit Senior Adult Services. Call 972-960-1521.

Monday, June 27

You say, "Public speaking?" and we say, "No, thank you." The idea is nauseating. But man, if we could only rap. Then we could turn to our alter ego, MC Pants, and get all 8 Mile up in that piece for our certainly supportive audience. Right. Problem is we can't freestyle. So, for the Monday Nite Fight at Caribbean Bar and Grill, we'll watch the competition for Freestyle Sultan (we know, we didn't think they ranked such exotic titles, but we'll flow with it) for five bucks and steer clear of the mike checkin'. The MC with the most wins from the year's MNFs is the Freestyle King and will battle the previous champ. The show is hosted by 97.9 FM The Beat's Headkrack and is open to all...you just gotta get up to King status before you go head-to-head for Sultan-ship. It may be a little confusing in print, but the show is really just fun for a good cause. MNF aims to educate and empower hip-hop artists through programs such as the MNF Literacy Campaign. The showdown begins at about 10:30 p.m. Caribbean Bar and Grill is located at 3068 Forest Lane, Suite 111, in Farmers Branch. Call 972-241-9113.

Tuesday, June 28

In the late '80s, we discovered the world's greatest fashion tool--the Bedazzler. We Bedazzled jean pockets, felt purses, a few unfortunate neckties for Dad and other various garments. Coupled with slick paint and foil iron-ons, the Bedazzler helped us rule the DIY circuit of our school, humbled only by one girl who was successful at multiple-color tie-dye. Still, our fashions never looked as cool as Manuel's. The Mexican-born designer has paid homage to the country that became home for him by hand-crafting a jacket representative of each of the 50 United States. Some are decked out with state birds, flowers or icons, but all of them trump our jeans with "Dallas" on one back pocket and an outline of Reunion Tower on the other. See the patriotic fashions (and three numbers worn by Trio mavens Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris and Linda Ronstadt) in Manuel: Star-Spangled Couture at the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame, 1720 Gendy St. in Fort Worth. The exhibit continues through November 6. Call 817-336-4475 or click on www.cowgirl.net.

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