Anyone who ever fantasized as a youngster about the person they would become and who their soul mate would be can identify with Julie Padilla's one-woman comedy, You Don't Look Mexican. Padilla plays Maria, a young Mexican-American woman who once dreamed of marrying a tall, handsome Mexican prince, someone who rolled his r's perfectly and whom her grandmother would be proud of. Instead, Maria is a bulimic lesbian who calls herself a lousy Chicana because she can't roll her own tortillas and gets her beans from a can. Padilla weaves together what promises to be entertaining and thought-provoking explorations of sexuality, self-respect and ethnic pride. Tonight and Friday at Talento Bilingue de Houston, 333 South Jensen (in Guadalupe Plaza). Shows are 8 p.m. both nights. $7 for adults, $6 for children 12 and under. For more information, call 222-1213.
Infernal Bridegroom brings us Mac Wellman's Harm's Way. Santouche, the none-too-bright, heat-packing antihero, is on the run from the law. He's nearly in the clear when he stumbles into a parallel universe that's almost the America he knows, but not quite. Join him as he encounters dead presidents, carnival barkers, weird little girls and a beast called the Guyanousa. You also won't want to miss this opportunity to experience Slump, the garage band's garage band. Harm's Way opens tonight at 8 p.m. and runs every Friday and Saturday night through October 31 at the Last Concert Cafe, 1403 Nance. Tickets are $9.99. For reservations, call 522-8443.
You don't have to go to Albuquerque or Santa Fe to witness a powwow this weekend. The Intertribal Council of Houston is sponsoring the Ninth Annual Texas Championship Powwow today and tomorrow at Traders Village. Representatives from the Choctaw, Kiowa, Comanche, Apache, Sioux and Navajo tribes (among others) will be present to celebrate their heritage and demonstrate lost arts such as tepee building and war dances. Cash prizes will be awarded to those who best capture the true spirit of their ancestors. (No word on who's judging the competition.) From 8 a.m. to dusk; free. Traders Village, 7979 North Eldridge. For more information, call (281) 890-5500.
The dueling street festivals are back! Those interested in browsing among booths displaying paintings, ceramics, sculptures, jewelry and the like in the cozy, nonthreatening environment offered by Hermann Square will enjoy the Bayou City Art Festival. Also on hand: live entertainment, a wine cafe and international food. If such refinement isn't your bag, get down and dirty with the rest of the freaks at the Westheimer Street Festival. Its gathering of shirtless weirdos with large, scary dogs on unreliable leads offers one of the year's best people-watching opportunities. You'll also have your typical street-festival fare, as well as live performances from such bands as 30FootFall and Blue October. The Bayou City Art Festival's hours are 10 a.m.6 p.m. today and Sunday; admission is $5. For more information, call 521-0133 or visit www.artcolony.org. The Westheimer Street Festival's hours are 9 a.m.7 p.m.; admission is free. For more information, call 522-6548 or visit www.westheimerfestival.com.
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The Queer Artists Collective and the Houston Lesbian and Gay Community Center are staging Loud and Queer: A Coming Out Day Spoken Word Event in honor of National Coming Out Day (that's today, for all of you who forgot to mark your calendars). The theme is an old-fashioned be-in, so bring your incense, love beads and blankets along with your queer Beat poems and idealistic rants against The Man. 79 p.m. at the Houston Lesbian and Gay Community Center, 803 Hawthorne.
What better way to recover from the weekend's revels than with a lovely evening of classical music? Maestro Christoph Eschenbach leads the Houston Symphony in an all choral program including Faure's Requiem and Stravinsky's Symphony of Psalms. Houston Symphony Chorale members Dominique Labelle (soprano) and François Le Roux (baritone) are the featured soloists for the evening. 8 p.m. at Jones Hall, 615 Louisiana. Tickets are $29$65. For more information, call 224-7575.
It's week two of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and we won't let you escape the deluge of information! Dr. Bob Arnot, chief medical correspondent for NBC News, is the guest speaker at the Four Seasons Hotel's Literary Luncheon. His newly published book, The Breast Cancer Prevention Diet: The Powerful Foods That Will Keep You Well reveals that the foods a woman eats can change the structure of the breast and alter the flow of hormones that induce breast cancer. The luncheon begins at 11:30, and the cost is $30. The Four Seasons Hotel is located downtown at 1300 Lamar. For reservations or more information, call 652-6210.
Come follow the ancient elephant, Old Bull, as he teaches us about the intricate workings of pachyderm society in Africa's Elephant Kingdom, the latest IMAX film at the Museum of Natural Science. Through Old Bull's eyes, we learn how matriarchs of elephant clans protect and defend their families (including charging at intruders carrying big IMAX cameras) and how the young bulls must fight to win a mate. Africa's Elephant Kingdom runs through January 31, 1999. Admission is $6 for adults and $3.50 for children and members. For daily showtimes and to order tickets in advance, call 639-