Norman Rush
(READING) The unnamed academic--the aspirational smarty-pants with an excellent vocabulary--of Norman Rush's superlative Mating makes a brief appearance in his new novel, Mortals. Now she has a name and a political cause, but it's definitely her, along with the fabled Nelson Denoon, the man she crossed a desert for. Tonight, Rush reads from Mortals, which revisits some of his pet themes (love, obsession, whites living in Africa) in his ever-fluid voice. (Elliott Bay Book Company, 101 S Main, 624-6600, 7:30 pm, free.) EMILY HALL


Charles Krafft
(ART) Ring of Spone: Reliquaries and Memento Mori finds Charles Krafft's work displayed exactly where it belongs: in a columbarium along with other people's ashes. There are other people's ashes in his "Spone" ceramics, which are a macabre update on the already faintly macabre process of porcelain production. Literally funereal work is on the upswing in the art world; Krafft knew it all along. The opening reception features music from a harpist, a bagpiper (to give it all a New York policeman's funeral feel), and then the Climax Golden Twins. (Queen Anne Columbarium, Mount Pleasant Cemetery, 520 W Raye St. Opening reception Fri June 13, 5-9 pm. Also open Sat-Sun June 14-15, noon-6 pm.) EMILY HALL

Three by Gregg Lachow
(LOCAL FILM) Local filmmaker Gregg Lachow--director of Money Buys Happiness and Silence! (both of which received screenings and buzz at SIFF)--has not one, not two, but three world premieres to offer us this week. Said premieres are as follows: What Is It Like to Be (about attempting to rediscover childhood at a local preschool), Not Now (which I won't even attempt to describe), and Workers Exiting a Factory (a series of shorts on the birth of cinema). At the risk of being preachy: Support local film. (The Little Theatre, 608 19th Ave E, 675-2055, see Movie Times on page 97 for showtimes.) BRADLEY STEINBACHER

SATURDAY JUNE 14The New Pornographers
(MUSIC) If you don't like Vancouver, BC's New Pornographers--you're nothing but an asshole, buddy. Singer/songwriter Carl Newman makes pop so informed by pop royalty (the Beach Boys, the Kinks, Burt Bacharach, Jimmy Webb, David Bowie) that he himself should wear a crown of jewels. The fact that hottie chanteuse Neko Case, and Destroyer's Dan Bejar, also figure in the band, and that Electric Version is an amazing follow-up to 2000's Mass Romantic, means that tonight the Showbox audience promises to be 100 percent asshole-free. (Showbox, 1426 First Ave, 628-3151, 8 pm, $14 adv.) KATHLEEN WILSON

SUNDAY JUNE 15'Ondine'
(THEATER) Jean Giraudoux's Ondine is a sincere, lyrical, three-hour fairy tale, and I loved it in the goopy corner of my self that sighs at full moons and finds aquatic mammals deeply moving. Concerning the doomed love of a water sprite for a hunky, if stupid, knight-errant, Ondine skewers human cruelty, lust, power relations, social conventions, and class snobbery. Like all good fable writers, Giraudoux is a social critic in pastoral poet's clothing, and this excellent, original adaptation of Ondine by director Sean McEnaney deftly negotiates the textual tension between Giraudoux's punchy wit and elevated language. Go see it. (Open Circle Theater, 429 Boren Ave N, 382-4250. $15. Thurs-Sat at 8 pm, Sun at 7 pm. Through June 21.) BRENDAN KILEY

MONDAY JUNE 16Il Fornaio
(CHOW) Normally, I don't enjoy the "corporate dining experience." But I always make an exception for the amazing pasta at Il Fornaio's Risotteria--made in-house, along with all of the restaurant's breads. Here you'll find delicious entrées (thin-crust pizzas, risotto, pastas, huge salads, and meat dishes, with nothing over $13.95) and none of the obnoxious, overbearing service typically seen at chain eateries. I'm totally hooked on the beef carpaccio with arugula and Parmesan, and the excellent tagliatelle with peas and little veal meatballs; and the kitchen's take on Sicilian street food--fried arancini balls stuffed with meat and cheese--is reason enough to join the soccer moms at Pacific Place for lunch. (600 Pine St, ground level, 264-0994.) MIN LIAO

TUESDAY JUNE 17 Sodomy Ruling
(GAY-RIGHTS LANDMARK) Here we are at the end of June, which means the United States Supreme Court will issue its ruling in Lawrence v. Texas, the high-stakes challenge to Texas' gay-specific sodomy law, any day before the end of the month. Will the Supremes strike down homo-only sodomy laws as an unconstitutional invasion of privacy? Or will they find some way of justifying the continued oppression-by-law of America's gays and lesbians? Either way, the day of the verdict will be the most significant event for gays since Stonewall, and all the gays and those who love them should go to the same place at the same time to celebrate and/or complain. May I suggest the stage at Volunteer Park, in the afternoon/early evening on the day of the verdict? See you there. DAVID SCHMADER

(MUSIC) Seattle's giving birth to great new bands faster than a horny rabbit on Viagra. Things just keep getting better here as bands like the Blank-Its take the stage--or, in the case of Zak's, the floor--more and more often. I've only seen them play twice, but the Blank-Its are getting a good word-of-mouth thing going, with their jangle punk melodies and effects on the frontman's vocals that make him sound like he's gurgling up his words from the bottom of a swimming pool. If memory serves, the band sounds like a more uneven (in a good way) Thermals, but then again, my memory sometimes doesn't serve at all, so go see the Blank-Its for yourself. (Zak's, 206 Fifth Ave N, 448-0961, 9:30 pm, $5.) JENNIFER MAERZ