Press Picks

I'll Show You Mine If You'll Show Me Yours! This is the Art League's way of reaching out and giving Houston art lovers a great big Valentine's hug. The ubiquitous Art Guys -- or Art Guise or Art Guyz, or however they're spelling their name this time round -- play host, and artists Jim Pirtle, Nestor Topchy and Jackie Harris perform. Prizes are offered for boxer shorts/lingerie attire, plus the League promises music, dancing and "surprises." 8 p.m. Houston Heights Boxing Academy (boxers -- get it? These artists can be so clever), 72 Heights Boulevard, 523-9530. $5, with a cash bar.

National Condom Day So you're not inclined to keep your warm fuzzies to yourself, eh? Well, if you must love, love responsibly -- that's the message from the American Social Health Association. For more information about safe sex, call (800) 972-8500. Or, if this news reaches you too late, call the STD Hotline at (800) 227-8922.

february 15
Appearance Center It's not bad enough having cancer. No, then you go through chemotherapy and all your hair falls out. Precisely when you need to feel your strongest, you start to worry about your looks. Marilyn Robinson has been there, and she's ready to help other cancer patients nip these concerns in the bud. Today she unveils one of her two new Appearance Centers -- drug-store sections selling products for cancer patients -- and she'll show cancer patients how to wear hats, wigs and even sunscreen with panache. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Briargrove Pharmacy, 6435 San Felipe, 783-5704.

Country chic So you're tuned in to CMT and you're thinking, how can I, a normal Texas gal, get a look like Tanya Tucker or Wynonna Judd? Well, hold on to your pastel Wranglers, 'cause Rique is here to show you the way. He's the image consultant to the country stars -- including Lyle Lovett, Alan Jackson, Vince Gill and Emmylou Harris. Helen Frances, who promotes weight loss without dieting, joins Rique to teach seminar participants "to enhance their natural beauty and inner essence." Noon-3 p.m. Sweetwater Country Club, 4400 Palm Royale, Sugar Land, 622-7676. $35.

47th Annual Charity Cat Show For 47 years, the Houston Cat Club has almost always held its annual show in January. This year, though, the Smithsonian exhibit bumped the kitties from the convention center till February -- and, organizers worry, into conflict with the Rodeo. This year's optimistic theme: "How the West Was Won ... With Cats, of Course." 600 felines will compete for points, ribbons and the coveted Fancy Feast Waterford goblet. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. today and Sunday. George R. Brown Convention Center, 1001 Avenue of the Americas, 468-0409. $4; $3, seniors and children under 12.

february 16
Houston Symphony Bon Voyage Word is that Europeans are hot for Texas bands right now. Perhaps not coincidentally, the Houston Symphony is taking a three-week tour of the Continent, but not before giving local supporters a chance to hear its roadshow: Phaethon, Christopher Rouse's contemporary tone poem dedicated to the Challenger astronauts, as well as Beethoven's Eighth and Mahler's First symphonies. This trip will be the first time the symphony has performed at the Barbican Centre in London or in Amsterdam's Concertgebouw, which tickles director Christoph Eschenbach's fancy -- as does spreading American-made music overseas. 6:30 p.m. Jones Hall, 615 Louisiana, 227-ARTS, $15-$35.

Vietnamese Music Academy Awards and Concert This first-ever glitzfest is billed as "the biggest and most glamorous Vietnamese concert event ever put together in the U.S.A." It's a kind of People's Choice Awards for Vietnamese music old and new. Fans have voted via mail, fax and the Internet, and their faves will be saluted with red carpets, celebrity performances and lifetime achievement awards. 2 p.m. The Summit, 10 Greenway Plaza, 961-9003. $35$100.

february 17
Boney on the budget It's that time of year again, when city government reaches out to the citizenry. Tonight, District D gets its chance to tell Councilman Jew Don Boney what it wants. Sewer lines, streets, police and fire stations, libraries -- all are up for discussion. 7-9 p.m. Museum of Fine Arts, 1001 Bissonnet, 754-0149.

An Evening of Quickies Scriptwriters/Houston gives ten writers just five minutes each to deliver an original monologue. The local authors might present comedy, satire or drama -- but they're guaranteed to do it quickly, then clear the podium for the next hopeful. 7:30 p.m. University of St. Thomas, Jones Theatre, 3910 Yoakum. Free.

february 18
How to land Mr. Right Psychotherapist Neill Scott has studied the subject -- that is, he's studied Ellen Fein and Sherrie Schneiders's retrograde book The Rules: Time Tested Secrets for Capturing the Heart of Mr. Right. And now, through Leisure Learning Unlimited, he's ready to teach you all those things your mother tried to: how to be a nice girl; how to play hard to get; and what to do when your man won't commit. 7:15-9:30 p.m. In the Richmond/Kirby area (for more specifics, call 877-1981 and ask for class number 5002). $15.

february 19
Chip Flatow Besides being a standup comic, Chip's a licensed psychological counselor and certified hypnotherapist. Maybe if you don't laugh at his little jokes, he'll hypnotize you, make you believe he really was funny, and while he's in there, stir up a midnight craving for fried liver. As long as you leave thinking you had a good time, you got your money's worth. The Dream Doctor, as he's sometimes called, opens a two-week stand tonight. 8:30 p.m. The Comedy Showcase, 12547 Gulf Freeway, (281) 481-1188. $6.

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