This Week's Day-by-Day Picks

Thursday, February 27

Gaetano Pesce makes special household items that you won't find at Gallery Furniture (not to dis Mr. Mac). The revered Italian industrial designer wants his resin furniture to have imperfections so that each piece is different from the last. After all, mistakes are reminders that the works were made by human hands. Today, the designer speaks about "Cultural Objects: The Meaning of Difference in Architecture" at 6 p.m. at the Brown Auditorium of the Museum of Fine Arts, 1001 Bissonnet. A 7:30 p.m. reception follows at the Sunset Settings showroom, 2610 Sunset Boulevard. There you can check out Pesce's creations, including works from his "Nobody's Perfect" collection, which was a hit at the 2002 Milan Furniture Fair. Showroom hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, through March 14. For information, call 713-522-9381.

Friday, February 28

Peggy Wang was inspired to make the animated short film Something Smells Like Fish when her pussy caught on fire. Not that one, silly; her cat's tail ignited when he swished it too close to her stove. Now Wang has turned the incident into a movie about a cat hunting a fish in the same room where a couple's going at it. The fornicators' dirty talk serves as a narrative about what happens to the cat. The film is playing as part of the Love and Other Difficulties edition of Microcinema International's monthly Independent Exposure series. Also on the bill: Thirst for Revenge, a film about the need to get even; Hitclown, about a clown and a hit man who switch jobs; and Resting Light, about a blind man, his faithful wife and his curvaceous lover. 8 p.m. Fire Station No. 3 Gallery, 1919 Houston Avenue. For information, call 713-412-5120 or visit $5.

Saturday, March 1

The Bob Marley Festival has a new name: The Legends of Rasta Reggae Festival. Apparently organizers have had problems attracting corporate sponsors; according to the event's Web site, they changed the name because they "did not want to appear that they condoned the use of the sacrament used and promoted by Bob Marley." But, of course, the joke's on the sponsors. After all, if they really want to reach that coveted 18-to-34 demographic, corporations ought to just mount campaigns that outright condone the use of marijuana. Besides, whatever the festival's named, you can be sure that the tunes of the Black Rebels, Natricity, Purple Kush and Mystic Vision won't be the only things wafting through the air this weekend. Noon to 10 p.m. today and Sunday, March 2. City Hall Plaza and Tranquillity Park, 901 Smith. For tickets, call 713-629-3700 or visit $10 to $15. Between noon and 3 p.m., get in for $5 and a new teddy bear, or $8 worth of nonperishable food.

Sunday, March 2

It's that Mardi Gras time of year again. You know, the weeks when women who pretend to be prudes during the off-season start pulling up their blouses for T-shirts and strings of plastic beads. Our advice to the ladies: Just watch out for the Girls Gone Wild! cameras. A single indiscretion could land you on TV, drunk, with your tongue (and your boobs) hanging out. This year's Mardi Gras celebrates "The Rainforests of the World" and promises nonstop entertainment. Today at Saengerfest Park (23rd Street and Strand) see the Bayou Bango Club (11 a.m.) and Hunter Hayes (4 p.m.). On Saturday, March 1, see Three Dog Night (4:30 p.m.) and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy (6:30 p.m.) at Saengerfest Park; and the Gourds (2:15 p.m.) and La Raza Connection (10:15 p.m.) at 24th Street and Strand. The party runs 6 p.m. to midnight, Friday, February 28; 8 a.m. to midnight, Saturday, March 1; and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. today. Join the revelers between 21st and 25th streets on Strand and Mechanic. For information, call 866-505-4456 or visit $15 Friday, $20 Saturday and $5 today. Free for children 12 and under.

Monday, March 3

The .17 square miles inside Rome known as Vatican City technically make up their own little country. The head of state, elected for life by the College of Cardinals, is none other than Pope John Paul II. And in case you were wondering, the official currency of the little nation is the Euro. Houstonians can see the treasures of Vatican City without even boarding a plane at the new "St. Peter and the Vatican" exhibition at the Museum of Natural Science. Many of the artworks, artifacts, documents and jewels in the exhibit will be on public display for the first time. See works by Michelangelo, Bernini, Gallo and Cellini, along with the papal tiara of Pope Pius IX. That's right -- tiara. Apparently princesses and transvestites aren't the only ones who wear them. 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays (after March 14, the museum stays open until 8 p.m. on Tuesdays). The exhibit runs through July 27. One Hermann Circle Drive. For information, call 713-639-4687 or visit $9 to $17.50.

Tuesday, March 4

Been feeling that something in your life's a little off? It could be that your pad's got bad feng shui. In this case, don't be passive; take a cue from Donald Trump, Madonna and Prince Charles, all of whom have called in feng shui advisers to get that chi flowing properly. Feng Shui for Beginners at CenterPoint for the Body, Mind and Spirit promises nine basic cures for the home or office. Who knows? If you move a mirror or two and face the bed the right way, the rest of your life might fall into place. 7:30 p.m. 1920 Hollister. For information, call 713-932-7224. $15.

Wednesday, March 5

Judging by the articles Greg Fitzsimmons has written for, he's kind of like a younger, hipper Dave Barry. The comic, who was once called New York comedy's golden boy by The New York Times, writes about impending fatherhood in a hilariously self-deprecating fashion. When Fitzsimmons's wife told him she wanted to start procreating, it made him reflect on his relationship with his member: "As a young man we grew into a team; I gave him pleasure by introducing him to, and into, various shapes and sizes of new women, and he brought me a sense of confidence and yes, 'cockiness'"It was all a game, and now we were being called to battle -- the ultimate battle: We were being invited to perform a miracle." See Fitzsimmons (but not his partner in crime) today at the Laff Stop. 8 p.m. through Saturday, March 8, with additional shows at 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. 1952 West Gray. For information, call 713-524-2333 or visit $9.50-$13.50.

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