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Holiday cheer, with a smirk

These offbeat events may appeal to those wanting to start new traditions.

December 17, 2009|By Jason Gelt
  • Asylum has "Bob's Holiday Office Party," with Ann Randolph, Rob Elk and Joe Keyes, right.
Asylum has "Bob's Holiday Office Party," with Ann Randolph,… (Ed Krieger )

The holidays are all about traditions that pepper the calendar between Thanksgiving and New Year's -- the tree lightings, the breakfasts with Santa and, of course, "The Nutcracker" -- but Angelenos looking to spice things up this season aren't going to be disappointed. Put a fresh spin on the season with one of these quirky happenings.

Bob's Holiday Office Party, Hollywood: Now in its 14th season, this irreverent parody gives audiences a humorous peek at the age-old tradition of the holiday office party. Booze-laced eggnog flows freely, faces are slapped, drinks are spilled and embarrassment reigns supreme in Joe Keyes and Rob Elk's rude and riotous sendup. Theatre Asylum, 6320 Santa Monica Blvd., 8 p.m. tonight through Sat., 7 p.m. Sun. $20. (323) 960-5774. www.bobsofficeparty.com.

Charles Phoenix's Retro Holiday Slide Show, Hollywood: The King of retro-Americana celebrates the season with a comedy-laced photographic tour of the strange holiday customs of days gone by. With color images culled from his massive collection of found Kodachrome slides, Phoenix's keen eye for the bizarre and wry sense of humor celebrate the innocence and outrageousness of American holiday life and style in the 1950s and '60s. Egyptian Theatre, 6712 Hollywood Blvd., 2 p.m. Sun. $25. (323) 461-2020. www.charlesphoenix.com.

The Eight: Reindeer Monologues, Marina del Rey: Jeff Goode's adults-only holiday play presents a North Pole in disarray, with Rudolph languishing in a padded cell and jolly Santa on a bender. All of the other reindeer dish about the real goings-on in St. Nick's workshop in this hilarious yuletide performance. Waterfront Bar & Concert Theater, 4211 Admiralty Way. 9 p.m. Sun. and Mon. $15. www.cruthaighproductions.com.

Holiday Sparklers at Vertical Wine Bistro, Pasadena: This warm and inviting Pasadena wine bar serves up a daily rotating special of sparkling wines to celebrate the 12 days leading up to Christmas. Resident "Wine Dude" David Haskell selects the bubbly and offers pairing suggestions from the restaurant's new bistro-inspired menu. Vertical Wine Bistro, 70 N. Raymond Ave. Daily through Dec. 24. Closed Monday. $5 per glass. www.verticalwinebistro.com.

SANTA Monica Pub Crawl, Santa Monica: There's a reason the "SANTA" is in caps: Thirsty revelers dressed as Santa, elves, reindeer and carolers spread holiday cheer and imbibe festive cocktails at this first annual charity event. A food donation to the Westside Food Bank entitles the bearer to drink and grub specials at more than 15 bars and restaurants, including Britannia, Wokcano and Big Dean's. Begins at Rusty's Surf Ranch, 256 Santa Monica Pier, 5 p.m. Sat. Minimum donation of one nonperishable food item per person. www.santamonicapubcrawl.com.

Santasia, Sherman Oaks: An all-male cast (in drag a la "Kids in the Hall") deconstructs the holiday season with irreverent and absurdist sketches that parody the most sacred of holiday stories. Be prepared for some yuletide man-in-tutu action, ribald references to canned hams and pop culture spoofs galore. Whitefire Theatre, 13500 Ventura Blvd. 8 p.m. Thu-Fri., 3 p.m. Sun. through Dec. 26. $20-$28. (818) 990-2324. www.whitefiretheatre.com.

The Santaland Diaries, Hollywood: David Sedaris' amusingly cranky Christmas memoir springs to life on stage. The trials and tribulations of working as one of Santa's elves at Macy's are revealed in this one-man show starring "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" alumnus Nicholas Brendon. The Blank Theatre Company, 6500 Santa Monica Blvd. 8 p.m. tonight through Sat. 2 p.m. Sun. (323) 661-9827. www.theblank.com.

St. Nick's Pet Pics, Montclair: Why should kids have all the fun? Bring the family dog or cat to visit with Santa and have the moment memorialized on film. Montclair Plaza. 5060 E. Montclair Plaza Lane. 6-9 p.m. Mon. $14.99 to $45.99. (909) 626-2442. www.montclairplaza.com.

Vintage Christmas Bazaar, Los Feliz: Bona fide unused vintage items from the 1910s through the 1950s are on display and for sale, courtesy of Shine Gallery. La Luz de Jesus Gallery, 4633 Hollywood Blvd., 11 a.m.-9 p.m. daily through Jan. 3. Free. (323) 666-7667. www.laluzdejesus.com.

jason.gelt@latimes.com

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