See Bio Box. Kane Hall 220, UW Campus, 634-3400, 7 pm, free (tickets required).
"AN EVENING OF THOREAU AND WAGONER"
David Wagoner, UW poet, has written a play about Thoreau; tonight you can see an advance reading of it, as performed by local actor (oops: "theater artist") Todd Jefferson Moore, whose three names lend to the event a whole new element of gravitas. Afterward, David Wagoner will read some of his poetry. A Contemporary Theater, Seventh & Union, 760-1527, 7 pm, free.
Brooklyn poet D. Nurske, with music in his abbreviated name, visits to share his newest collection, Leaving Xaia. D. Nurske has won awards for his shadow-mouthing. Wessel & Lieberman Booksellers, 121 First Ave S, 682-3545, 7 pm, free.
Cinco de Mayo takes on new meaning with this reading centered around La Vida Loca -- literally, the crazy life; figuratively, a state of mind in which life careers out of control. Los Norteños is a coalition of Puget Sound-based Latino writers, artists, theater artists, and musicians, whose interpretations of Latino-oriented themes are always memorable. Expected to read tonight: Kathleen Alcala, Flor Fernandez Barrios, Olga Sanchez, and others. Elliott Bay Book Company, 101 S Main St, 624-6600, 7 pm, free.
*NORA OKJA KELLER & FRIENDS
Nora Okja Keller's intense and amazing book, Comfort Woman, gained her a reputation as a forceful, engaging storyteller; she makes this visit on behalf of a new anthology she co-edited: Intersecting Circles: The Voices of Hapa Women in Poetry and Prose. Contributors will read. Elliott Bay Book Company, 101 S Main St, 624-6600, 3 pm, advance free tickets available at store.
KAREN E. BENDER
A book with affected but mildly affecting style and subject matter, Like Normal People is the sto ry of a developmentally disabled woman who runs off with her young grand-niece, describing an arc of adventure through shoplifting and fugitive fantasy. Bender's stories have been included in some prominent publications, including Best American Short Stories 1997, but this novel feels like a faltered first flight. Elliott Bay Book Company, 101 S Main St, 624-6600, 5:30 pm, advance free tickets available at store.
Described in superlatives (including, in fact, "Superlative!" -- LA Times), biologist Jonathan Weiner's study of DNA biologist Seymour Benzer, Time, Love, Money: A Great Biologist and His Quest for the Origins of Behavior, is a prize-winning scientific biography, a perfect summer read for those who revel in this sort of thing (and I know who you are). Elliott Bay Book Company, 101 S Main St, 624-6600, 7:30 pm, advance free tickets available at store.
CHUCK COLLINS & PAM ROGERS
Money, money, money. It's out there, some of you have quite a bit of it, and Chuck and Pam want to talk to you. They are co-authors of Robin Hood Was Right: A Guide to Giving Your Money for Social Change. Elliott Bay Book Company, 101 S Main St, 624-6600, 5 pm, advance free tickets available at store.
Get the low-down on Mark Lindquist's profile of '90s Seattle, Never Mind Nirvana -- a book that recasts real people in our local music scene to create, or re-create, its legendary hype. The story is pretty good, too, with a main character whose conscience is filtered through lyric and drink. Ah, the high life. There's a party at the Crocodile afterward. Elliott Bay Book Company, 101 S Main St, 624-6600, 7:30 pm, advance free tickets available at store.
Her own sex life is of endless fascination to Courtney Weaver -- so much so that as Salon.com's columnist she carved a narrative of almost unparalleled solipsism. A new book, titled after the column (Unzipped), carries the tradition on, beginning with Weaver's ruminations of being dumped, and how the activity of her answering machine has thus increased exponentially. Oh, baby, I know. University Book Store, 4325 University Way NE, 634-3400, 7 pm, free.
THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN
Distinguishedness is often indicated via the use of the middle initial in one's name, and Mr. Thomas L. Friedman is indeed a Pulitzer- and National Book Award-winner. Thomas L. talks about a new edition of his book The Lexus and the Olive Tree: Understanding Globalization, which now includes a preface discussing Seattle's WTO experience. Kane Hall 130, UW Campus, 634-3400, 7 pm, free (tickets required).
Frequently described as "sweet," sometimes "tender," Zadoorian's novel Second Hand explores relationships through cast-offs, both animal and mineral. Oh, also "quirky." Elliott Bay Book Company, 101 S Main St, 624-6600, 5 pm, advance free tickets available at store.
*JIM CRACE, ROSE TREMAIN
It's hard for me to understand why this reading's being held in Elliott Bay's tiny basement: Rose Tremain (her newest historical novel is titled Music & Silence) alone has scores of followers, the kind who will doubtless show up an hour early. But Jim Crace is the real reason to attend, as he reads from his brilliant new novel, Being Dead. You don't need me to tell you it's brilliant -- you've been reading the New York Times Book Review, too. Elliott Bay Book Company, 101 S Main St, 624-6600, 7:30 pm, advance free tickets available at store.
Note to regularly programmed open mics: The Stranger will list events only if we receive an announcement -- regular listings will be dropped unless we are notified that the events are in fact ongoing.
Count the days no more -- 665 is back, reconfigured by Salon Productions. This open mic is hosted by Sarah Sharp. Four Angels Cafe, 1400 14th Ave at Union, 264-5139, 7:30 sign-up, free.
Each and every Thursday, this venerable Pioneer Square venue spotlights music, poetry, and comedy. Pioneer Square Saloon, 73 Yesler Way, 624-6444, 8:30 pm, free.
An eclectic open mic that encourages you to "bring your circus act!" Lottie Mott's Coffee Shop and Collective Baggage, 4900 Rainier Ave S, 725-8199, 7 pm, free.
RED SKY POETRY THEATER
Seattle's longest-running reading series livens up the tiny Globe Cafe. Globe Cafe, 1531 14th & Pine, 324-8815, 7:30 pm, free (donation).
Hosted by Circus and friends, "Seattle's own Little Bohemia" emerges from a hiatus transformed. Globe Cafe, 1531 14th Ave & Pike, 324-8815, 7:30 pm sign-up, free.
SEATTLE POETRY SLAM
Seattle's highest-powered slam hunkers down at Dutch Ned's, with featured readers each week, plus open mic for money. Dutch Ned's, 206 First Ave S, 340-8859, www.seattlepoetryslam.org, 9 pm, $3.
Confess your sins at this open mic: a forum for cleansing your soul in public. Poets, writers, musicians, welcome. Coffee Messiah, 1445 E Olive Way, 860-7377, 8:30 pm, free.