Things to Do

Things to Do in Washington, August 17-19

Arts, entertainment, and fun in DC, Maryland, and Virginia right now.

Illustration by Hannah Good.

Hey y’all,

We’ve got a virtual play, revolutionary meditation, trippy cocktails, and more.

Me at restaurant week.

Here’s what you should check out this week:

Yumm: Learn about DC’s Ethiopian food scene with KAMA DC and food advocate/writer Anela Malik (the blogger behind Feed the Malik). Malik will talk to Ethiopian restaurateurs Sileshi Alifom, head of DAS Ethiopian in Georgetown, and Philemon Mastewal, the cofounder of Buna Coffeehouse in Petworth. Monday 8/17 at 6 PM; Free, register here.

Book talk: She was recognized for her writing before she shared her name publicly. Chanel Miller detailed the night of her sexual assault in an anonymous impact statement that went public after the perpetrator, Brock Turner, received a six-month jail sentence. Now, Miller has come forward to share more about her experience in the new book, Know My Name: A Memoir. Miller will speak with author Rebecca Solnit in a virtual Politics and Prose event. Tuesday 8/18 at 8 PM; $22-$27.51 (price includes a signed copy of the book), buy tickets here.

A night at the theater: This month marks the 100-year anniversary of the ratification of the 19th amendment which granted some, not all, women the right to vote. Unfinished Work is a new virtual play that focuses on those who were excluded—the women of color who fought for access to the ballot box long after 1920. Written by Ming Peiffer and directed by Whitney White, the piece highlights five leaders: Mary McLeod Bethune, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, Zitkála-Šá, Mabel Ping-Hua Lee, and Jovita Idár. The play is based on the upcoming New York Times book Finish the Fight!: The Brave and Revolutionary Women Who Fought for the Right to Vote by Veronica Chambers and the newspaper’s staff. Tuesday 8/18 at 7 PM; Free, RSVP here.

For the kids: The DC Public Library is hosting a virtual story time event commemorating the centennial of the 19th Amendment. Hear Mara Rockliff’s Around America to Win the Vote: Two Suffragists, a Kitten and 10,000 Miles and see the illustrations by Hadley Hooper. Wednesday 8/19 at 3 PM; Free, watch in on Facebook live here.

Inhale, exhale: Explore how rest can be revolutionary in a Zoom event with local wellness org Well Read and The Mindfulness Center. There will be a 20-minute guided meditation followed by a discussion of the New York Times story “Rest as Reparations” by Sandra E. Garcia. Wednesday 8/19 at 7 PM, $10 suggested donation (proceeds go to meditation training scholarships), learn more here.

In good news: BABY PANDA ALERT. This is not a drill. The National Zoo is reporting “exciting movements” from panda Mei Xiang’s ultrasound. Read more about the new panda cub here.

Magical drinks: The innovative tech-art gallery Artechouse is known for its motion-sensor light exhibits and augmented reality bar. You can take part of that experience home with you now with to-go cocktail pouches (yes, like an adult Capri Sun) in collaboration with Colada Shop, Maketto, and Thamee. Scan the code on your pouch with your phone to see cool floral graphics tied to the current cherry blossom-focused show, “Hanami: Beyond the Blooms.” Learn more here.

Fauci swag: Throw away your old Anthony Fauci toy and trade up for a new-and-improved bobblehead featuring the famous Fauci facepalm. I’m really not kidding.

Summer restaurant week: Find out what you need to know about this year’s restaurant week, takeout edition, here. Our critic Ann Limpert has her recs for what you should eat here. And, if you’re really just looking for brunch deals, we have suggestions here, too.

A vibe check:

Are you taking care of yourself? Getting enough sleep? Drinking enough water? We’re nearly six months into a pandemic and I don’t think we’re talking about our mental health enough. It’s easy to think that by this point, we could have and should have adjusted. Humans adapt! Right? Once it became clear that this wouldn’t be some sort of temporary moment of hardship and inconvenience, I thought—probably naively—that I could still achieve some sort of equilibrium. Yes, it would be a rough transition and I’d have my challenges, but eventually I will get used to it. Yet here we are in the middle of August and I am still struggling. How are you coping?

Singing is the best part of cooking.

One thing that helps me (even though I do it so infrequently) is cooking. I like the rhythm and order of following a recipe and inhaling the various aromas from fresh herbs like cilantro and recao, which my mother uses to make her amazing rice and beans. I’m trying to get better at chopping (I doubt any prep time estimate because I am that slow) and improvising, which I rarely try with anything that isn’t breakfast. (I am a BIG breakfast person.) Do you have a favorite recipe to make when you’re stressed? I wish I could be as skilled as a stress baker—I know many of them—but my attempts would probably rival the cake fails on Nailed It!

Thanks for reading! Tell me what you’re up to at home by dropping me a line at

Rosa is a senior editor at Bitch Magazine. She’s written for Washingtonian and Smithsonian magazine.