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Eight Things

January 10, 2008

PEARLS AND SWINE: Pierre Crocquet's "Morning Coffee" (above) is among the hundreds of thousands of photographs you can view at Photo L.A., the country's biggest fair dedicated exclusively to the medium. An estimated 10,000 visitors will peruse offerings from 74 galleries, which, this year, will be housed in a new venue: the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica. Buy, browse or attend a lecture by lifetime achievement honoree Julius Shulman. Noon to 8 p.m. Fri. & Sat., noon to 6 p.m. Sun. $20 for one day; $30 for all three. www.artfairsinc.com/photola/2008.

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2. THE LONG GOODBYE

Chandlerphiles have long drawn a blank when it came to the writer's much older wife, Cissy Pascal. Both ingenue and cipher, the mysterious woman presented a challenge for novelist Judith Freeman (pictured), who combed the Chandlers' correspondence (what wasn't burned by Raymond in a cathartic pyre after her death) and traced Cissy's influence throughout his fiction. The resulting "The Long Embrace: Raymond Chandler and the Woman He Loved," is part bio, part seance -- and an essential document of Chandler's L.A. 7 p.m. today. Central

Library, (213) 228-7025. www.aloudla.org

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3. HE TALK SIX DAYS

"I haven't got the slightest idea how to change people, but still I keep a long list of prospective candidates just in case I should ever figure it out," David Sedaris once wrote. Hear similarly restrained zingers as the deadpan author workshops material from his upcoming book, "Indefinite Leave to Remain." Jan. 15-20, UCLA's Macgowan Little Theater, $20-$50. Limited tix available; call (310) 825-2101

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4. BLOW HARDS

Hot air has never been so entertaining. Become fluent in the language of blow-up headdresses at the Inflatable Crown, a collaborative exhibit of international balloon art from photographer Charlie Eckert (that's his "Norwegian Soldiers," above) and pro-balloon twister Addi Somekh. Wonder if Steve Martin knows about this . . . Ends April 6. Skirball Cultural Center. $10 adults, $7 seniors and students, $5 children 2-12. www.skirball.org

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5. ONE COOL CUSTOMER

Kanye West's buddy Lupe Fiasco grinded into hip-hop with "Kick, Push," a skateboarding homage that only hinted at the street elegance of his 2006 debut, "Food and Liquor." His latest, "The Cool," is a lofty folly, but so what: He's still one of the smartest MCs in the game. 8 p.m. Mon., House of Blues Anaheim; 8 p.m. Thur., House of Blues Sunset Strip. $25. ticketmaster.com

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6. KING MAKERS

It may not have the emotional juice of Natalie Cole singing "Unforgettable" with a video image of her father. But bassist Luther Hughes' tribute to Nat "King" Cole offers a memorable impression of the great one in his jazz-rich trio days via the vocals and laid-back piano playing of John Proulx and the sly, rhythmic guitar of Barry Zweig. 8 p.m. Sun., Charlie O's, Valley Glen. (818) 994-3058

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7. DESTROY ALL MONSTERS!

Like Godzilla battling Mothra, Gidra, Rodan, et. al., uber-truck Grave Digger takes on a slew of hulking, jacked-up monsters with names like El Toro Loco, Monster Mutt and Arachnophobia at Monster Jam. The gargantuan trucks spin, speed and (keep your fingers crossed) flip over in the battle to be the loudest, fastest, flashiest truck around. The action happens when? Saturday, Saturday, Saturday!!! 7:30 p.m. Sat., Angel Stadium of Anaheim. $10-30. www.monsterjamonline.com

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8. GO WITH GOD

Paul Mazursky ("Bob and Carol and Ted and Alice") practically invented the sensitive, sexually aware '70s movie. But that was then. On Tuesday, he'll present his latest, "Yippee! A Journey to Jewish Joy," a documentary about Hasidic Jews at a three-day prayer fest in the Ukraine. 7:30 p.m., Tue. Skirball Cultural Center. $12. tix.com

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