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Saluton! That means ‘Hello!’ in Esperanto, but I assume you already knew that anyway, being that it’s the language of the universe and all. Do you know what else is the language of the universe? SPORTS. More specifically, THE OLYMPICS. Yeah, THOSE start this weekend in London, hence this edition of NYC Best Weekend Bets will be punctuated by images of Olympic athletes crying. And don’t worry, even if you’re what they refer to as an “indoor kid,” there are plenty of non-sports related activities to keep you occupied this weekend including music, movies, Pit Bulls, free drinks, and bees! So let’s get started, shall we?

Thursday July 26th, in which you try to cope with the fact that you didn’t score Frank Ocean tickets by going to SO.MANY.ALTERNATE.EVENTS.

  • Remember lunchtime trading in the cafeteria? If you were the kind of monster who tried to swap a tuna fish sandwich for a Twinkie, now’s your chance to redeem yourself! Krrb in Williamsburg is hosting a food-centric swap from 6-9pm where you’ll be able to trade your own homemade edibles and/or non-edible kitchen gear with other food fans. The good news is that even if nobody wants to trade with you, everyone’s also required to bring a potluck-style dish to share. See also: you won’t go hungry! There will also be free drinks, plus PRIZES for the guests with the best contributions. Not bad for $5, so check out the details here.
  • Maybe cooking’s not your thing? Well, if Pit Bulls are, then we suggest you drop by Gristle Tattoo (178 N. 8th St.) for their ArtFundraiserforPitBulls. Artists from all over have donated pieces to the cause; these will be available for purchase from 7-10pm, and proceeds will go to the Animal Farm Foundation. BONUS: free snacks, wine and beer will be provided.
  • If we got your attention with that list bit about free alcohol, then you’ll be delighted to know that VICE will yet again be hosting a free screening of “People Who Just Had Sex” at the Westway, where you can guzzle free drinks from 10-11pm and learn so much about people who just had sex.
  • More free booze, you say? Okay, but only if you don’t mind a little free music to go along with it. Make sure to RSVP for the latest House of Vans party; this gets you free entry to see King Khan and the Shrines perform live, plus FREE BEER all night long. Highly recommended, but get there EARLY.

  • We’re like, totally buggin’ that Clueless is playing at Brooklyn Bridge Park, so unless you want to wake up Friday morning feeling like SUCH a bonehead, GOTOTHIS.
  • What? You think Clueless is not even a good movie? WAY HARSH, TAI. Slash it sounds like you need more awkward, deadpan-induced laughter in your life, in which case you should check out TheDaveHillExplosion! (Insert explosion noise here…)
  • If you like your laughs to be a little less explosive, then pay a visit to RISK!, the show where people will tell you “true stories they never thought they’d dare to share in public, stories they’d normally tell close friends,” which I am going to assume are embarrassing and well worth the $10 admission fee.
  • Maybe you just want to rock out or something, in which case you should probably go to the free Oberhofer / SoftPack / RoyalBangs show. Hopefully more people show up to this one than the last Royal Bangs show I saw, which was (andIquotemyselfhere) “one of the deadest shows I’ve ever been to, including my sixteenth birthday party which my friend’s band ‘Tired of Trying’ agreed to play; attendees included my parents, a handful of Ralph Wiggum-ites, and this boy only known as ‘The Mooney Suzuki t-shirt kid’.” THEY’RE GOOD, JUST GO.
  • Pay just a little extra and you can head over to Ludlow Street to see GhostBeach / NightPanther / NicosGun / N/A @ Pianos or BeachDay / ChalkandNumbers / IslandTwins @ Cake Shop. Both shows come in at $8, a total wallet win.

If for whatever reason you find yourself with a small scrap of energy left for Friday, here is another barrage of events just for you!

  • First, join me in trying to remember the lyrics of the US National Anthem. See? It’s kind of hard. Good thing Whitney will always be a YouTube click away to remind us.
  • Next, get so amped for the opening ceremonies of the 2012 London Olympic Games! TrafficBar will screen the event from 6-9pm, and while you pretend that you care so much about athletics, your body can host its own 2012 Organ Olympics! This will involve you challenging your liver (USA) to process an hour of free drinks (Ireland? England? Russia?), while your stomach (USA) will be pushed to the limits against free hors d’oeuvres (France) from 6-7pm.
  • Because you love America so much, and because all those free things ended at 7pm, you’ll want to continue the Olympic celebration by heading over to the VillagePourhouse at 8. They’ll have $1 Bud Light drafts and $4 red, white and blue shots, which is so patriotic that you pretty much HAVE to get super drunk to prove you’re not a communist. (Or so I would assume.) Also, snag one of VP’s passports to get 50% specially featured international beers each day of the Olympics. VALUE.
  • If you think sports are the worst, it’s probably a safe bet that you think indie music is pretty great. Good news! You can skip the Olympic snoozefest and catch Pomegranates at Mercury Lounge. Or, if you were a dummy and missed King Khan for free last night, you can pay $15 to see theshowtonight at Bowery Ballroom. Only interested in Brooklyn tonight? Go to Glasslands for the Growlers show, or to Prospect Park for TheHeadAndTheHeart / LostintheTrees.
  • If none of those shows seem highbrow enough for you, then you can (probably) feel good about seeing AntipopConsortium perform at the New Museum instead.
  • No sports OR music for you? Not to worry! Check out the last night of the Norwegianfilmscreenings @ BLDG 92. SMART.
  • As a bonus inclusion, I’d like to point out that nothing says “Tragic Kingdom” quite like Central Park’s Rumsey Playfield at 6am. However, if you would like to see NoDoubtperformforfree, then by all means, TRAGIC KINGDOM IT UP bright and early courtesy of Good Morning America.


  • Depending on how hungover you are, you may or may not want to takethisclass, which will teach you the ins and outs of selecting fish from Chinatown supermarkets, as well as how to cook the items you purchase. Note: Chinatown smells can be dangerous even when you’re at the height of your non-hungover game, so if you’re even remotely nauseous this morning, I would not recommend this for you.
  • Again, depending on how hungover you are, you may or may not want to participate in the 4thAnnualBrooklynWaterfrontEpicRide today. You might have just read the word “Epic” and thought, “I am hungover, although I also like epic things,” but DO NOT BE FOOLED. You will immediately and forever regret your decision to ride your bike for like, thousands of miles. HOWEVER, if you read this and said “I am not even remotely hungover, I have a bike which I enjoy riding for thousands of miles, and I like the words “Brooklyn” “Waterfront” “Epic” and “Ride,” too,” then this is perfect for you and you should go.
  • For a slightly less fishy-smelling and/or less active excursion that will still get you out and about, visit the RedHookopenstudiosseries from 12-5. You can check out work spaces belonging to local businesses and artists, which will undoubtedly make you feel more cultured than sitting at home on the couch, PLUS there’s a bonus reception at Botanica featuring Brooklyn Winery hand-crafted wines.
  • If you have any life-threatening allergies, and/or are vegan, and/or are a man, you can probably stop reading this right now. Also, if it’s not your lifelong dream to spend your Saturday hanging out with bees, you can stop reading, too. Okay are you still reading? Great, because those UrbanGirlSquadgirlshavedoneitagain! You’ll have the best time learning about urban beekeeping, tasting honey produced by city bees, and being filled with girl power!
  • If you think East Williamsburg is a real place, you should go to the BushwickBlockParty and learn all about New York’s hidden oasis! Andrew WK is headlining the event, plus about a zillion other musical acts will be performing. And because it’s Saturday and you like to eat food even more than usual, you’ll be glad to hear lots of food options will be available, including but not limited to FREE margherita pizza from Roberta’s.
  • This next event implies you need a cause to go bowling. Newsflash: YOU DON’T, BOWLFORACAUSE. You should’ve named it “Bowling! Which Is Already Awesome, But Also Here Is A Bonus Opportunity To Feel Good Because You Are Helping This Great Cause Or Whatever!”

  • In the case that the novelty of the Olympic Games (which technically start today) hasn’t worn off for you just yet, and/or if you just really like eating a lot of sweets and drinking a lot of gin-based cocktails, then head to TheLondonCandyCo to watch the Games. A perfect evening that combines ALL of the things you apparently like to do.
  • Everybody knows that Iceland is a magical place filled with magical people, so it should come as no surprise that thismagicalIcelandicdocumentary features a magical old woman. Titled Grandma Lo-Fi, this is the story of a woman who started making music when she was 70 and never looked back. (Side note: the music is actually kind of good.) Plus she’s super adorable (as is the Icelandic and/or old person way) so go watch her be amazing in an equally amazing outdoor setting.
  • To continue with the film trend, you can feel like such a genius at MoMA’s screening of The 400 Blows! Then you can spend the rest of the night lording your intellectual and cultural superiority over unsuspecting victims. Just launch into all your theories about what’s next for young Antoine and you’ll make it very clear whose brain is larger!
  • Tonight’s musical selection is diverse and amazing. For instance, Lyle Lovett will be performing at the WellmontTheatre, while Ginuwine will be at B.B. KingBluesClub & Grill. How will you choose?! I vote you listen to your wallet and go see ComTruise (DJSet) / ChromeCanyon (Live) / Airbird (DJSet) at Glasslands instead for $5. POOR PEOPLE UNITE!
  • Bonus inclusion: crash thisBridgewater, NJClassof 1992 HighSchoolReunion! If you (like myself) were 4 when this group graduated, then you can spend an enchanting evening convincing people you’ve aged incredibly well since high school (and also that you’re really successful) all for the low price of $115. Dinner and drinks included!

Sunday, possibly fun day.

  • Provided the aforementioned events didn’t render you totally immobile today, you should keep the party going with whatever energy you have left and head to The Grove for the 100th Mister Party. Good vibes, good people, good to go.
  • Or, maybe you don’t have much (if any) energy left to fuel your activities today and would prefer to spend it in silence in the dark? Great! Because there are like a million movies happening today. Scream the pain away with the Film Forum’s triple header, which will feature creepy classics like TheWolfMan, TheInvisibleMan, andTheMummy. Also screening today: AfricaUnited in Queens, plus TheLittleGirlWhoSoldtheSun at MoMA. You’ll totally feel like you’re doing something while you doing nothing!
  • Looking for some soothing sounds instead? Well, we can at least guarantee there will be sounds at the music offerings for today, which include YoungMagic / Quilt / SecretMountains / Murals at Mercury Lounge, and OfftheRecord: DanNeustadtplaysSynchronocitybyThePolice at Le Poisson Rouge, because everyone knows nothing takes the sting out of a hangover quite like Sting.

LEAVE US COMMENTS WITH THINGS YOU THINK WE MAY HAVE (not on purpose) MISSED. And remember: if you have tips, an event you want to let us know about or would like to get involved with BYT NYC, shoot us an email at: [email protected] with #BYTNYC in the title. See you around and all the time. And, one for the road: here’s to happy endings.

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and one for the road: