The Week in Geek April 11-18: Spam castles, Donkey Kong-a-thons, and Gelfling violence

Pants, magic pants.

It's that time of year again when I cry every time I wake up, because the snow is gone and yet I still have to go to class. But after class, I'll be watching a lot of movies and gorging myself with cupcakes and hot peppers. Consider it endurance training in preparation for the marathon. By which I mean the video game marathon happening at MIT. (You didn't think I was going to physically exert myself, did you?)


[zombies] Dr. Steven Schlozman @ Porter Square Books
The mad doctor of zombie neuroscience is at it again! Spreading his portents of doom to the masses from his sepulchral throne at Porter Square Books. 7pm!

[film] The Leopard @ Coolidge
Visconti's masterpiece featuring international stars, well-dubbed Italian, and "swirling music"! From a Phoenix capsule review last week, The Leopard "wouldn't look out of place on anyone's all-time list of 10 greatest films." Tonight at 7pm!


[space] Cosmonaut's Day Conference @ MIT
50 years ago today, we thought it would be a good idea to put a guy in a little box on top of an enormous exploding rocket and see how high in the sky we could get him. Surprisingly, he agreed to this. Let's celebrate by having speakers discuss the future of space travel and migration. Blast off at 7pm.


[author] Andrew Rimas @ Harvard Book Store
Let's pretend Andrew Rimas is Doc Brown, and we can be Marty McFly, as he tours us through 12,000 years of foodies and famines, exploring how food shapes culture, before delivering us to the present, where food crisis looms. Biff!? 7:01pm.

[mmmm] Cupcake Camp @ Arts At the Armory
I know how outrageous this sounds, but this is basically a cupcake potluck. Over at the blog, you can check out some baker profiles. You could also check out some recipes for your own damned cupcakes here, because you best bring some. 7pm!

[TV!] Ghost Hunters @ Higgins Armory
SyFy channels Ghost Hunters took a trip to the only armory museum in the Western Hemisphere. Presumably they made it out alive, otherwise I don't think they'd broadcast this. But it should still be pretty spooky! Tonight at 9pm on the SyFy channel!

[ahhhhh hot!] Chili Pepper Eating Contest @ El Pelon
Fifteen Dollars for Fifteen Fiery Peppers for Free Burritos for one year (well, that's ALMOST as good as "Peter Piped Picked"... but not quite). Come down to compete in these semi-finals, or at least just watch a bunch of people get ulcers!

[burlesque] TALK NERDY TO ME @ Middlesex Lounge
Boston's Rogue Burlesque presents their latest in nerd-themed burlesque, promising a night of "bespectacled ladies and pocket protectors," along with MIT blind dates, Nintendo games, Harry Potter talk, and robots dancing lasciviously. $5 at 10pm at the Middlesex in Cambridge!


[mosh] New England Metal and Hardcore Fest @ Worcester Palladium
Grab your bandannas, gym shorts, and sambas, cause the Palladium is bringing the mosh with this 3-day festival featuring Between the Buried and Me and Job for a Cowboy.

[lecture] Excavating the Great Aztec Temple @ Peabody Museum, Harvard
Internationally renowned archaeologist Eduardo Matos Moctezuma has been working on the legendary El Templo Mayor in what is now Mexico City. He'll discuss his experiences digging in the city, and the colossal statues and artifacts found there, followed by a reception. FREE at 530pm!

[film] Waltz with Bashir @ MFA
Critically acclaimed animated docu-what-is-this comes to the MFA. Part of their Hollywood Scriptures series on psychology of human warfare which will also feature Lebanon, Armadillo, and War Don Don.  $10 at 730pm.

[ghosts] Beware The Dangers of a Ghost Scorpion! @ Middle East Upstairs
Local undead dudes bring their brand of psychedelic afterlife surf rock to the Middle East Upstairs! Opening for Girlfriends who are celebrating a new 7'' release! $10, 8pm!

[spam] Spamalot @ Lowell Auditorium
Before we had "Electronic Mail", and before there was a system of tubes known as the "Internet," SPAM was a good thing. So good in fact, that a few rowdy British chaps made a movie, which inspired this musical showing at the Lowell Auditorium. They'll be unveiling the winner of a "Build Something out of Spam" contest, so look out for spam-castles! $30.50-$56.50. at 8pm!

[burlesque] TraniWreck featuring COME @ Oberon
Drag burlesque gets taken to a new level when indie legends Come perform with their original line-up. $15 at 830pm!


[dangerous] Segway Experience @ Museum of Science
While employees at the Museum of Science have been cruising on Segways since 2004, they now open Segway tours to the public. Come down to ride around on a Segway and see how the area around the museum looks when you're passing by at 12.5 mp/h.

[gaming] Complete Game Completion Marathon @ MIT/Your Computer!
Turning Fundraising into Fun-raising, MIT hosts the 2nd annual Complete Game Completion Marathon, in which players will play video games for 48 straight hours to raise money for Accion, a global micro-finance lender. And they're live-streaming the whole thing online. What's to see? Sez they: "Players will be in costume. Some will play video games with their feet.  Another will play Donkey Kong Country and eat bananas." Starts at 6pm!

[films] Tron: Legacy & Serenity @ Tufts Film Series
The geek-friendly Tufts Film Series presents games-gone-psycho Tron: Legacy, as well as Joss Whedon's Firefly movie Serenity this weekend. Free and open to the public, at Barnum Hall. Beginning with Serenity at 7pm tonight!

[music] Kronos Quartet + Mini-Maratrhon @ MIT
Part of the Festival of Arts and Science, Kronos Quartet appears at MIT playing minimalist master Terry Riley's The Cusp of Magic, before a gamelan comes onstage to play a piece called Supercollider. Afterwards, more new music ensembles will play until midnight. 7pm!

[films] Labyrinth + Dark Crystal @ Brattle Theatre
Double feature of Labyrinth -- a film that perfectly showcased the starman's weirdness (and stretchy pants) -- and The Dark Crystal, arguably the darkest Muppet film ever made. Playing tonight, and then again on Monday! 7:30 pm!

[comics] Lynda Barry & Alison Bechdel @ Wellesley College
Cartoonist and wind-power critic Lynda Barry will discuss her life and times, as will Alison Bechdel. These significant figures in the comic world will talk on image as autobiography, and how that influences their work. 7:30 pm!

[freak show] Madame Tullule's Grand Fiasco @ Oberon
Bearded lady, alligator boy, trapeze act. Like a speakeasy sideshow should be. See you at 8pm sharp.

[redsploitation] Red Dawn @ Coolidge
A perfectly fossilized memento of the Reagan Years: a hilarious communist-paranoia flick taken to extreme levels of campy goodness. Showing at midnight!


[battle!] Pokemon Regional Championships @ Natick Elk's Club
Do you want to be the very best? First place finishers will receive a lot of prizes, including money, travel awards, and lots more cards to improve your deck! If you've got the Poke Balls, registration is at 9:15am.

[author] Christopher McDougall @ Harvard Book Store
Runner-journalist McDougall talks supermarathons, alongside a panel of biomechanists, hunter-gatherers, and "barefoot" scientists. 2pm!

[o hai doggy] The Room @ Coolidge Corner Theatre
YOU ARE TEARING ME APART, LISA! The Coolidge is screening Tommy Wiseau's The Room a bunch in the next few months. Starting tonight at midnight. Get your tickets early!


[food tube] Sounds like a fine time to catch the latest ep of (newly renewed!) Bob's Burgers. Oh, and maybe America's Next Great Restaurant, if only for the purpose of enjoying David "Get Your War On" Rees's recaps all that much more.


[you knew this was coming] Boston Marathon!!
Yes, it's 4pm, and you're just waking up ... but about 12 hours ago, 20,000 people woke up to walk, run, and wheel for nearly 25 miles. In the off-chance you're reading this in advance, the fun starts at 9am, and you can watch it pretty much anywhere.

For more events, check out our geekified listings portal. If you've got any geek-related events you'd like us to post, contact us! Follow us on Twitter @LaserOrgy! Follow our RSS feed! Tell your friends!

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