The Smart Set: Lauren Cerand’s Weekly Events

MONDAY, 8.30: Which magazine editor would you most like to tell you a story? Bum you a cigarette? Harper’s head Lewis Lapham might well do both when he joins the Moth for a special event, entitled “Listen Up: Stories of Squeaky Wheels,” as part of the Imagine ’04 festival of “arts, issues, and ideas” — three things that New Yorkers have plenty of these days. 7:30pm, $10.

TUESDAY, 8.31: Remember when you moved to New York because the direct action was just so much, well, wittier here? Celebrate our surplus cleverness with an afternoon of hellraising and break out the best of your all-black wardrobe to defend Johnny Cash from The Man & Co. at Sotheby’s. Other options include telling everyone in your midtown office that you’re stepping out for a half-caf bone-dry raspberry no-whip moccachino and instead swinging by the Fox News Shut-Up-A-Thon, or joining the Billionaires for Bush for a little grandstanding, er, flashmobbing around town. Times vary.

WEDNESDAY, 9.1: Start your day off right and mingle with other single protesters – single file, that is – when you join the Unemployment Line, a real skinny (and legal) demonstration that will stretch across the city to represent the millions of people who have lost their jobs due to the current administration’s seriously whacked economic policies. My good friend Adam is volunteering for one of the affiliated organizations, Downtown for Democracy, and he’s responsible for bringing 50 people to the party, which takes place from 8:13 to 8:31am. Be a doll (for peace! and justice!) and RSVP for details to Evening-wise, it’s all about the [insert a word here that means, “downtown literary celebrity” — DoLiCe, in broker’s parlance?] star-studded Demo at The Poetry Project. 8:00pm, FREE.

THURSDAY, 9.2: Take part in a minor revolution as teenage poets speak out about the issues that affect them, thereby deposing Paris Hilton and Britney Spears as the MTV spokes-bots of a generation. “Young Voices of Protest” (also Imagine ’04-affiliated) is presented by Def Jam Poetry co-founder Danny Simmons at Dance Theater Workshop. 6:00pm, FREE. If you can’t lose the suit (or are over 21, or both), head over to the louche library that is Lexington Bar & Books or other suitable environs. the National Arts Club, where it will come in handy (as jackets are requested). Ben Marcus, editor of the muchadored Anchor Book of New American Short Stories, will introduce contributing writers, including A.M. Homes, Mary Caponegro, and Gary Lutz. 15 Gramercy Park South, 8:00pm, FREE. Update: the National Arts Club event is next Thursday, 9.9.

FRIDAY, 9.3: Some hippie playwright has adapted some dusty old Bertolt Brecht play about being a patriot or something. Whatever the story is, going to see it is still better than being a Republican (sorry, Dad!). “This Jungle of Cities” is presented by The UnConvention, “a festival of theater for political change.” 7:00pm, $12.

SATURDAY, 9.4: Stop by the Cornelia Street Cafe to enjoy the many splendored pleasures of the oud and an evening of new poetry at Ziryab, an open mike series dedicated to Arab-American writers. Hosted by Ramsey Moufarej and Nada Taib, with Tarik Benbrahim on the oud. 6:00pm, $6 (first drink is included in the cover charge) [first spotted at].

SUNDAY, 9.5: Park Slopers, defy the stroller mafia and support your local “only full-time punk metal deathrock alternative bar,” Lucky 13, and its Atomic Reading Series. Sunday night, the cat drags in curator Cheryl B, erotica editor Rachel Kramer Bussel, poet Elena Georgiou, Konundrum Engine Literary Review poetry editor KC Trommer, and writer Kathleen Warnock. 7:00pm, FREE.

The Smart Set appears Mondays and highlights the best of the week to come, with special favor given to New York’s independent booksellers and venues, and low-cost and free events. Please submit details to by the Thursday before publication for consideration.

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