If a popular book franchise is to be believed, stories are like chicken soup for the soul. You know what else is like soup for the soul? Soup. The monthly lit series That’s All She Wrote teams up with the Hideout’s free weekly soup dinner Soup & Bread to raise funds for Swim Cafe owner Karen Gerod, who is battling cancer. Local chefs—like Hoosier Mama’s Allison Scott— bring the soup; local writers read on health care and caregiving. $10 suggested donationhttp://thatsallshewrotechicago.com/
After a few drinks, everybody’s a raconteur. Or a raconteuse. Or, more likely, a bore. That’s not the case with the ten storytellers at the Moth’s GrandSLAM Championship, all of whom are previous StorySLAM winners. Tonight will determine who’s the best and funniest of them all. $17http://etix.com
There’s comfort to be found in recognizing trustworthy names in a band’s lineup—you know the music’s going to be gratifying, like a mug of hot cocoa. Local postpunk crew Pink Avalanche consists of scene fixtures with long resumés who’ve played in staple Chicago bands former and current, including Atombombpocketknife, Poison Arrows, Tight Phantomz, and Brokeback—not a dud in the bunch. Earlier this year the band dropped its debut full-length, Wraiths (released digitally via Past/Futures Records), which shows off a healthy range: it’s sometimes harsh and distorted (“Strike Gold” is practically an Unsane song), sometimes druggy and morose (the first half of “Unnamed Blood” is reminiscent of Queens of the Stone Age, with front man Che Arthur doing his best Josh Homme), and sometimes almost as zany as Les Savy Fav. Wraiths is clearly the work of musicians who’ve played the Empty Bottle stage more times than you’ve slept in your bed—they can pretty much do whatever they want, and odds are they’ll nail it. —Kevin Warwick Lasers and Fast and Shit headline; Pink Avalanche, Fake Limbs, and New Diet open. $10, $8 in advance
Bill Savage moderates a discussion between crime fiction writers Frances McNamara, David J. Walker, and Tim Chapman.
Moshak discusses her memoir Ice 'n' Go: Score in Sports and Life.
Tyre discusses the Second Presbyterian Church, Chicago's only National Historic Landmark church. Part of Lunch Talks @ CAF.
A tasting of local wine, beer, and spirits at the garden's Wonderland Express exhibit. 21+ $28, $25 in advance
Local rock radio station Q87.7's massive yuletide celebration, "The Night We Stole Christmas," headlined by the brothers Leto.
Every holiday-themed sketch in this Corn Productions revue involves a drinking game, and all drinks are included in the price of admission. $25