Monday, July 23: The Ponys, one of the best straight-ahead rock acts around, hit the Black Cat (1811 14th St., NW; 202-667-7960) tonight. The Chicago quartet plays its blistering show on the back stage. The opening act is worth checking out, too—Josh Reatard plays punky garage rock. $10; 9 PM.
This spectacular weather is a good reason to head to the Mall to take advantage of one of the few nonsweltering evenings when the outdoor film festival Screen on the Green is showing. Tonight’s movie is the sci-fi horror film The Thing (From Another Planet). Never been to Screen on the Green? See our tips to how to maximize your experience here.
Tuesday, July 24: Matt Besser—founder of the Upright Citizens Brigade, one of the most iconic comedy sketch troupes—will be at the Arlington Cinema ’N’ Drafthouse (2903 Columbia Pike; 703-486-2345) tonight at 8. Included with your tickets is a free pass to an advance screening of Hot Rod, a film starring Saturday Night Live guy Andy Samberg, immediately after Besser’s performance. I can’t say whether Hot Rod is any good, but Besser’s show will have you in stitches. Buy tickets ($17) here.
Wednesday, July 25: Hump day should mean happy hours. Try the $3 grilled-cheese night at Toledo Lounge (2435 18th St., NW; 202-986-5416), with happy-hour specials on draft. The grilled cheese is about as close to heaven as a sandwich can get you, and the patio provides perfect Adams Morgan people watching. For more options, search our Happy Hour Finder.
If your tastes run a little bit more high class, try the European Tour of Wine at the Corcoran Gallery of Art (500 17th St., NW; 202-639-1700) this evening at 7. Hosted by Joshua Wesson, cofounder of Best Cellars wine shops, the event will show you how to pair wines and cheeses. Better yet, the event takes place in a museum, so you can feel even more cultured. Buy tickets ($60) here.
Thursday, July 26: The Modernist Society, a monthly event designed to encourage “intelligent lounging,” hosts an evening at Bourbon (2321 18th St., NW; 202-332 0800). The group’s idea of intelligent lounging? A happy hour, a Q&A session with a newsmaker, and then a DJ spinning funky tunes afterward. On tonight’s bill is Josh Rushing, a former Marine who is now a correspondent for the cable network Al Jazeera English. If you get there early enough, you might snag some of the free Absolut Vodka cocktails. 8 pm; free.
Photographers—and people who love photographs—should enjoy a discussion with renowned photojournalist Harry Benson, whose work is featured in “Harry Benson: Being There” at the National Portrait Gallery (Eighth and F sts., NW; 202-633-8300). Benson was a wedding photographer in his native Glasgow until 1964, when he accompanied a little-known foursome called the Beatles to New York and chronicled their adventures. Doubtless he’ll have lots of anecdotes to tell at this free Portrait Gallery event. 7 PM.