Thursday, November 14
DANCE: Nightmares on Wax, an electronica deejay from England, has been spinning since before most of these new EDM artists were born. He’s managed to stay relevant without resorting to dubstep, sticking to chilled-out hip-hop and trippy beats. He’s at U Street Music Hall tonight, playing an early show, so you can still get home before your bedtime. Tickets ($20) are available online. 7 PM.
FILM: The Dunes hosts Asbury Shorts, an annual touring “film concert” produced in New York City. The concert features Academy Award-winning films as well as some that have won Best of Show awards at film festivals such as Sundance, South by Southwest, and Aspen Shorts. Tickets ($12) are available online. 6:30 PM.
Friday, November 15
SPIES: For the past year, the Spy Museum has been obsessed with all James Bond bad guys with its “Exquisitely Evil” exhibit. But the one thing that’s been missing has been a killer party. Celebrate a year with Brightest Young Things’ Sharks and Lasers party featuring Richard Kiel, the dude who played Jaws, perhaps the most recognizable Bond villain of all. The party will also feature Bond villain stand-ins, mechanical shark rides, a confession booth, real-life spies, and plenty of music to keep you dancing. Tickets ($20) are available online. 8 PM.
COMEDY: You don’t need to be hammered to laugh at the comedians behind the Drink Till We’re Funny tour, but it probably won’t hurt. (If you’re not feeling it, you can just grab a drink or two.) The tour features eight Baltimore comedians and will stop by the DC Arts Center. The after-party is at Mellow Mushroom, where you can get $5 small cheese pizzas, $5 Jameson breakfast shooters, and $2 PBRs. Tickets ($15) are available online. 7:30 PM.
DANCE: Are you a control freak, or just sick of deejays who change the song right as it was getting good? The Smithsonian’s got your answer with their party at the S. Dillon Ripley Center. The bash puts some of the best sounds from the Smithsonian archive up online, and guests can remix them into something danceable—that means singing insects and clamoring monkeys mixed with jazz masterworks and sounds recorded by astrophysicists looking at deep-space events. The result is probably going to be unlike anything you’ve ever heard. The sounds are up now for you to remix, and some of the results are astoundingly good. Don’t know how to deejay? You can learn with special sessions at the dance party, which will feature a cash bar. Tickets ($15) are available online. 8 PM.
COMEDY: You know Nick Swardson from Malibu’s Most Wanted, his work with Adam Sandler, and his old show, Nick Swardson’s Pretend Time, but really he’s one of those guys you recognize but you’re not quite sure from where. Cement the image in your mind this weekend at Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse, where he’ll perform standup. He hasn’t released a new special since 2009, so he’ll likely debut some new material.
Tickets ($38) are available online. 7:30 PM. UPDATE 11/15: Tickets are sold out.
Saturday, November 16
BIKE: It sure is getting cold out, which means it’s time to start growing a beard and layering up—plaid and flannel would be ideal, especially for BicycleSpace’s Plaid Ride & Lumberjack Games. Meet at its space on Seventh and L streets, Northwest, decked out in as much plaid as you can find, then head on a ride through the city, ultimately ending up on Kingman Island. There, demonstrate your might by, like, chopping wood, eating a lot, telling tall tales about your time helping to cut trees to lay track for the Transcontinental Railroad, and doing whatever else lumberjacks do. Free. Noon.
LITERATURE: Naked Girls Reading is back, featuring Neil Gaiman. Just kidding, Neil Gaiman won’t be there, but the aforementioned naked girls will be reading from his work. After being shut down about a year ago, the reading series has been relatively smooth sailing since, and is about to celebrate its first anniversary. Tickets ($20) are available online. 7 PM.
DANCE: Following a relatively dull period after DC9 stopped doing Liberation Dance Party, it’s finally starting to throw some must-attend ones again. This week, it’s Peach Pit, featuring all the ’90s rock, hip-hop, and jock jams you could ever hope to hear, spun by Matt Bailer—you know him from the always excellent Mixtape dance night. $5. 10:30 PM.
Sunday, November 17
BEER & WINE: Everyone knows that the best part of these 5K glow-in-the-dark runs and “themed” races is the drinking afterward. The folks behind the Crystal City 1K Beer and Wine Walks decided: to hell with being outside and to hell with the running and to hell with doing five whole Ks. Get to the Shops at Crystal City for the least difficult race of your life, followed by tastings of 22 different domestic and international wines and pours of beers from breweries such as Troeg’s, Starr Hill, Port City, Blue Point, Great Lakes, and Bell’s. Things end with a dance party, where you might accidentally burn some calories. Tickets ($40) are available online. “Heats” start every half hour from 1 to 5 PM.
MUSIC: Even if you’re not into screamy heavy metal bands, and I’m guessing many of you aren’t, Gwar is worth seeing live at least once. It’s more of a theatrical experience than anything, with outrageous costumes, a crazy backstory that dates back centuries and spans several continents, and lots of flying objects. They’re playing at 9:30 Club, so you can cap off your weekend with a nightmarish experience before work Monday. Tickets ($25) are available online. 7:30 PM.
Know of something cool going on around town? E-mail Jason Koebler at firstname.lastname@example.org, or find him on Twitter.