This Week's Day-By-Day Picks

Thursday, September 29

There's no doubt that we fully support sexual health education, family planning and the organizations that promote such programs. However, we are the Dallas Observer, and boy, do we also love a good bit of irony. We couldn't help but chortle just a bit as we sorted through our press releases and noticed Planned Parenthood's Cocktails for a Cause. The fundraiser, Thursday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Dunn and Brown Contemporary, 5020 Tracy St., threw us ever so slightly considering that the name sort of implies that festive consumption of alcohol and family planning go hand in hand. But then we don't get rejoinders of "OK, wiseass" on a daily basis for no reason. Admission is $50 (drinks and hors d'oeuvres included) and raffle tickets are $25, benefiting Planned Parenthood of North Texas Inc. Call 214-363-2004 to purchase by phone.

Friday, September 30

Commercial free: Shots such as 2005's "ClosedEyesOpenDoors TV" address "remote" living in Adam Scott Donald's The Television Series.
Commercial free: Shots such as 2005's "ClosedEyesOpenDoors TV" address "remote" living in Adam Scott Donald's The Television Series.

Johnny? Gene? Gene? Johnny? No, we're not riffing on Letterman's Oprah/Uma bomber, just pondering the positive attributes of either actor as the iconic candy man Willy Wonka. Normally, we're not ones for compromise, but in the style of the age-old "It's a breath mint! It's a candy mint!" debate we can safely say, "Wait! You're both right!" because both Wonkas were pretty fine. For die-hard Roald Dahl fans, Depp pulled through in this year's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, bringing the book's bizarre character to life, an anti-kid manboy with odd twitches and other assorted issues. For those who grew up with Wilder's sing-song in 1971's Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, he embodied a more comedic fantasy of wild-haired sarcasm. We liked both, but favorite is a special honor for which we need more research. Having seen Depp's turn recently, we appreciate the opportunity to give Wilder another go on the big screen. Thanks goes to the Inwood Theatre, 5458 W. Lovers Lane. Get your golden tickets ($7.50) before the show begins at midnight Friday and Saturday. Call 214-764-9106.

Saturday, October 1

The idiot box. The best invention ever. The boob tube. Best friend. Whatever one's take on television, there's no denying that it is one of the most difficult things to escape. Walk into a restaurant, a hospital, even a library, and there you will often find a TV. Adam Scott Donald takes on this irrepressible electronic and its saturation of modern living in his photography exhibition and video installation The Television Series at Photographic Archives, 5117 W. Lovers Lane. Donald kicks off the show with a viewing and discussion of his video Channeling: The Cultivation of Reality from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday, followed by an opening reception from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Both events are open to the public and admission is free. Just don't forget to TiVo your Friends reruns. Kidding. The exhibition continues through October 29. Call 214-352-3167.

Sunday, October 2

Dearest Tom Selleck, my father heard you. In fact, he may have heard you a little too clearly when you said, "Go RVing." Thanks to you, he has now paved over part of his yard to create another driveway just for his disturbingly long beige and burnt sienna recreational vehicle. We haven't yet figured out how he got it down the alley and into (or out of) its new home, but nevermind. The female neighbors are surly about the extra concrete while their husbands continue to berate me with questions. Where did he get his road warrior? How's the mattress work with a bad sciatica? Now, Tom, you're asking why they're asking me, instead of dear Dad? Because he's out doing what you told him to do. Thanks, Tom. Thanks a pant load. As for you, neighbs, get to Dallas Market Hall for the Southwest RV Supershow, Thursday through Sunday. Tickets are $8 for adults and $4 for kids. Check out www.texasrvshows.com/southwest.htm for times and ticket coupons.

Monday, October 3

Answer honestly. How are your math and money management skills? If you had learned about spending, earning, saving, the economy and anti-counterfeit procedures (OK, fine, the anti-counterfeit stuff isn't great on the math promotion front but it is downright cool), would you have a better hold on that green stuff today? The Dallas Museum of Natural History in Fair Park welcomes Moneyville, a traveling exhibition sponsored by Chase bank and the State Fair of Texas. Aiming to inspire kids to get a grasp on those budgetary numbers before they rack up the average $9,000 on those credit cards, Moneyville offers several hands-on demos (kids can put their face on a million dollar bill, run a faux lemonade stand and more) to entice young ones to face the figures and keep those dollars in their pockets. Just one question: Where was Moneyville 30 or so years ago? The exhibition runs through January 8. Call 214-421-3466.

Tuesday, October 4

Running a successful restaurant is a tough business. It's excruciating on the ledger and brutal on the body. Hey, we read Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly, hence word counts and weekly deadlines instead of shady suppliers, grease burns and three-minute turnarounds on julienned balsamic beets. But then again, when we have an anniversary, we aren't deserving of a reward quite like those in the service industry. Spike Global Grill in Mockingbird Station celebrates its second year with a four-course Anniversary Wine Dinner featuring Anne Amie Winery. The cost is $50 per person (exclusive of tax and gratuity) and a portion of the proceeds will go to the Cancer Relief Fund, granting financial assistance to cancer patients. Damn, even when they're celebrating, they're serving others. Reservations are required. Call 214-828-2229.

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