Friday, July 18
BAR Houston thinks it's all that. If you want to go there today, you better make sure something in your closet fits its complicated dress code: "No tennis shoes; no baseball caps; no athletic wear; no T-shirts; no oversized or baggy clothing; jeans acceptable with dress shoes and dress shirt; dress sandals with backs are acceptable." Jeezus. If you're able to cobble together an outfit that in no way violates the rules, head to BAR Houston's Christmas in July party. The event features gift giveaways, drink specials and an appearance by old Saint Nick himself. You can sit in his lap, drink beer and gaze at bar-dancing girls who look suspiciously like strippers. We bet they're allowed to wear whatever they want to the bar. 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. 534 Texas Avenue. For information, call 713-227-5516 or visit barhouston.com. $6 cover.
Saturday, July 19
Some folks are gonna throw down at this weekend's Showtime Doubleheader. H-town boy and 2000 U.S. Olympic silver medalist Rocky Juarez will box in a ten-round featherweight bout against Antonio "Chelo" Diaz. And undefeated University of Houston sophomore Juan Diaz will face off in a ten-round lightweight contest against featherweight champ Francisco Lorenzo. The UH student is an especially tough cookie. In May, he fought a match that's likely to be nominated for "Fight of the Year." In round eight of a ten-round war, he was dropped by a quick right hook. But in the last two rounds, he feverishly pummeled his opponent and ended up beating the guy. What a stud. Today's fights will air at 9 p.m. on Showtime. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. at Reliant Park, One Reliant Park. For tickets, call 713-629-3700 or visit www.ticketmaster. com. $25 to $100.
Sunday, July 20
Calling all attractive, talented teenagers who like hanging out at the mall. This one's for you. If you sing, dance or just look damn good, then take the stage at today's Teen Extreme Talent Search at Memorial City Mall. Winners will receive "scholarships" to the Page Parkes Center for Modeling and Acting, gift certificates, a session with a nutritionist and a trainer and a "personal imaging session." The only drawback: Your mama won't recognize you anymore. But nobody said stardom didn't have its price. The event also features DK BMX stunt shows and an appearance by actress Sabrina Lloyd. 1 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. stunt shows; 3:30 p.m. talent contest. 303 Memorial City. For information, call 713-464-8640. Free.
Monday, July 21
Friggin' summer. The season when everybody's trying to get skinny. It'll be a while yet before winter -- the season of letting yourself go -- rolls around. So if you need an excuse to abandon the old diet, today, head to the Blue Bell Creamery in Brenham. You can tour the facility, visit a museum with rare Blue Bell and Brenham photos, and watch a short movie about the company's history and how it makes ice cream. Best of all, you can scarf down a sweet, cool bowl of fat. Scientific fact: Blue Bell makes the best chocolate ice cream ever. We pity the fool who buys a different brand. Tours take place at 10 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 1:30 p.m., 2 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. on weekdays. 1101 South Horton Street. For information, call 1-800-327-8135 or visit www.bluebell.com. $3.
Tuesday, July 22
We wouldn't want to spoil Department Thirty, David Kent's debut novel, for you. So we'll just present a series of intriguing questions. Did protagonist Ryan Elder's parents commit a double suicide? Does the U.S. government have a secret agency called Department Thirty? Why would a dying man utter the words "Adam and Eve" before expiring? Just what kinda shit were Ryan's parents involved in before he was born? And finally, does the book have any good sex scenes? You'll have to read it to find out. Kent signs copies of Department Thirty at noon at Murder by the Book, 2342 Bissonnet. For information, call 713-524-7945 or visit www.murderbooks.com. Free.
Wednesday, July 23
If you really want to learn more about wine, then don't drink too much of it. At wine tastings, after a certain amount, you just don't care what you're guzzling anymore, and Lord knows you won't remember later. Today, The Metropolitan's International Summer Wine Series highlights Portuguese wines. You can sample Carm Reserva, Marquis de Borba Reserva, Barros Port Vintage 2000, Charamba Tinto and other wines. And lest you forget what the hell you tried, make sure to pick up an information sheet for later grocery store use. The Metropolitan Ballroom is located in the penthouse of the Southwest Bank of Texas building. The view -- and the wine -- will make you feel like you're on top of the world. 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. 1801 Main. For information, call 713-655-8439 or visit melangeevents.com. $15 to $20.