The reading and performance series Literary Death Match is at the Black Cat. Four writers perform one of their own works, and judges decide on two finalists, who then engage in a physical duel (think laser tag or a sack race) for eternal glory. Tonight’s installment features a performance poet, a nonfiction author, and more. 8 PM; get tickets ($10) at Ticket Alternative.
Celebrate the birthday of the man responsible for so much confusion in English class. Guapo’s (4515 Wisconsin Ave., NW) is celebrating James Joyce with readings of his works, including Ulysses and Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man, followed by a happy hour. Readings begin at 5:30; free.
Crystal Couture gives local boutiques and consignment stores a chance to showcase their fashions with runway shows, where they also have a chance to sell their stuff. The event includes a cash bar, DJ, body painting, and an appearance by Bianca Chardei, a former contestant on America’s Next Top Model. At the Crystal City Food Court (1750 Crystal Dr., Arlington) through February 5, it features different stores each night; visit the Crystal City BID site for a complete list. Free.