Pressed for Time: David Bowie videos, 'Top Chef' peeps and more

| 11 Nov 2014 | 02:13

    The streets are deserted, the diners desserted, the dinners digested. Thanksgiving often feels like the week that wasn’t. There is little activity save a single turkey-eating frenzy preceded by stress and followed by stupor. But for those of you with no families or who wish you didn’t have a family or whose family is in New York (which usually means you wish you didn’t have them), there’s enough activity to distract you from all this giving of thanks. Amen. ------


    Thurston Moore introduces early David Bowie videos Dec. 1, MoMA, 11 W. 53rd St. (betw. Fifth & Sixth Aves.), 7:30, $12-$20

    Epicene David Bowie is cool and will always be the cool light to which we all are drawn. But early David Bowie was so red-hot cool that even approaching him one could get burned with coolness. Like dry ice. It’s that David Bowie, as seen in these early music videos, that is on display at MoMA in a special screening hosted by Thurston Moore (who supposedly moved to Western Massachusetts but is still everything)—himself no slouch in the so-cool-my-shoulders-tense-up department.

    Bottom Line: Guess what? It’s sold out, but MoMA will release a batch of tickets the day of the show at 1 p.m. and, of course, if you’re really cool enough you’ll figure out a way to get in, ticket or not.


    A Conversation with Samantha Power

    Nov. 30, 92nd Street Y, Lexington Ave. at E. 92nd St., 7:30, $27

    Remember Samantha Power? She’s the Harvard professor who called Hillary Clinton a monster (thus dashing her chances of a position in the Obama administration) and who, with her book A Problem from Hell, made genocide hot again. She herself, let’s face it, is hot. Not Ivory Tower hot, but hot like red-hair, sports-fan, green-eyes hot. Tonight she talks with slightly less hot NYU prof Ralph Buultjens about The Hills. Just kidding. They’ll probably talk about death.

    Bottom Line: Power has been hibernating since her public gaffe. This is a good chance to see her speak. She’s passionate and well spoken and very smart and very, very…. Hey buddy, eyes up here! ------

    Bravo’s ‘Top Chef’

    Nov. 26, Bravo, Channel 38, 10,  ridiculous cost of cable television

    It’s fair to say I’m insalubriously obsessed with this reality show, which pits chef against pitiable chef. But who isn’t? (See Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds, 1841). Instead of quietly seething as your family doesn’t adequately appreciate your bottle of Sancerre and witty commentary, why not watch the pretty pettiness of others?

    Bottom Line: Thanksgiving is no excuse not to sit in a room alone with a finger of whisky watching reality television and silently weeping. ------ Jean Painlevé with Yo La Tengo Soundtrack Nov. 28, Monkeytown, 58 N. 3rd St. (betw. Wythe & Kent Aves.), Brooklyn, FREE with $10 drink minimum

    French marine photographer Jean Painlevé, who died in 1989, was the real life Steve Zissou. His pseudo-scientific undersea documentaries are surreal, arresting and beautiful. Tonight, Painlevé’s The Love Life of An Octopus is screened, accompanied by Yo La Tengo’s uplifting soundtrack.

    Bottom Line: I’m no fan of Monkeytown (mediocre food, weird benches), but it has damn good programming. Like this. ------ Harry Connick Jr. Sings Holiday Songs Nov. 29, City Center, 130 W. 56th St. (betw. Sixth & Seventh Aves.), 8, $45-$125

    New Ol’ Blue Eyes HCJ croons holiday favorite to a sweater-wearing crowd of old and young Christmasophiles. Me? I fucking hate Christmas and sweaters. But the man is incredibly charming, has a good set of pipes and who can resist It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas while shit-tanked on eggnog and trying to cop a feel under the reindeer sweater wearing WASP sitting next to you? C’mon, that’s the spirit!

    Bottom Line: Get your quota of feel good Yuletide out of the way early and relatively painlessly. Then retire to your misanthropic cave for the rest of the season.