Tonight brings two events celebrating the (sometimes crazy) passions and talents of Pacific Northwesterners.

First up: American Collectors, the documentary by local filmmakers Terri Krantz and Bob Ridgley screening tonight as part of STIFF: Seattle's True Independent Film Festival.

As it says above, American Collectors is "a film about people who collect things," and despite the national scope of the title, a bunch of these film-worthy collectors come from right around here. Among the collected/hoarded objects: scary plaster bobbleheads; KISS merchandise (did you know there was a KISS kasket?); gorgeous antique purses; worthless AOL mailer CDs; art guitars; and Duran Duran memorabilia (by the one and only Durandy).

As for the film: It feels like a bit of a rough cut, or a pitch tape for what could be a great reality series, but it had more than enough substance to keep me engaged. A number of collectors are made to conduct their interviews standing outside their homes, due to collections choking every inch of inside space. My favorite "collector"—a sad-seeming nervous woman addicted to plastic jewelry from gum machines—best illustrated the fascinating and tenuous difference between collecting and obsessing: Watching her steady rhythmic twisting of the gum-machine knobs felt eerily like watching a softcore gambler zone-out in front of a slot machine.

Again, the doc's not perfect and occasionally gets repetitious (virtually every character is shown speaking about "the thrill of the hunt"), but profiling people through their objects is a great trick, especially when the objects are as odd and plentiful and occasionally gorgeous as those found in American Collectors. If this sounds like something you'd like, you're right, and you should go see it tonight at 7pm at the Central Cinema.

Meanwhile, I'll be celebrating an entirely different strain of glorious Northwest freakery at the 5th Avenue Theatre's High School Musical Awards, featuring high schools from across the state performing blowout musical numbers and competing for an array of prizes. There are few things I love more than enthusiastic teenagers doing things, and I cannot wait for tonight's show, which I've been promised will be a packed-to-the-rafters howling funhouse of high-school musicality.

Bad for you but good for the students: Tonight's High School Theater Awards is sold out, so please sate all your theater-award-ceremony-watching needs by viewing and reviewing this footage of Bret Michaels getting knocked on his ass by a descending set piece at last night's Tony Awards.