10. MUSIC: Robin Thicke: Blurred Lines
Who knew Robin Thicke would out-Timberlake Justin Timberlake? Well, he has: “Blurred Lines,” his sultry hit with T.I. and Pharrell has reached the highest radio audience ever, nabbing more than 242.65 million listeners; it’s now No. 1 in 80 countries. The album, named after the single, comes out Tuesday. Critics haven’t been as kind as the listening public, but at least the latest single, “Give It 2 U,” is catchy and phallic-obsessed.
9. EVENT: Summer Shorts, New York City, Through Aug. 31
Summer Shorts is ringing in a novel theater tradition in New York, featuring new voices and established veteran thespians. This year's festival of short plays includes projects by Lucas Hnath, Tina Howe, Neil Labute, Marian Fontana, Paul Weitz, and Alan Zweibel. The subject matter ranges from the fantastical fairy-tale land to coming to terms with death. For more information and tickets, check SummerShortsFestival.com
8. BOOK: Love, Dishonor, Marry, Die, Cherish, Perish: A Novel by David Rakoff
Dark, urbane, and witty, Rakoff's final book (he died last year of cancer) is not a collection of his popular essays. It's a novel in verse form — a little startling in the age of tweets. Rakoff was well known for his bestselling books and his contributions to the radio program This American Life. With book titles like Half Empty, Fraud, and Don’t Get Too Comfortable, Rakoff made the murky bearable with his humor. His novel of American innocence gone horribly awry is made all the more dramatic, even campy, by rhyming couplets. How can you resist rhymes like showered with Noel Coward? On Amazon.
7. EVENT: Chef Art Smith and IAMS So Good, New York City, July 30, 1 p.m.
Friendly gay celebrity chef Art Smith and his pup Cochon are taking over Union Square in New York on Tuesday to introduce IAMS So Good, a line of dog food that promises healthy nutrition for our four-legged friends. Festivities include carnival-style games, pet-friendly obstacles, “doggie bag” giveaways and samples of IAMS So Good dog food. More info here.
6. FILM: The Servant
If you like your gay stuff cryptic, occult, and perversely degrading, then The Servant, starring James Fox and Dirk Bogarde, will tickle your dark urges. Essentially about a bisexual butler who takes control and deploys increasingly cruel, bizarre rituals over his young master, the film has a creative team and cast with loads of gay cred — The Servant is based on a book by Robin Maugham (Somerset's nephew); James Fox was the gorgeous blonde Brit boy-toy of the moment, soon to star opposite Mick Jagger in Performance with even more bisexual hijinx; Bogarde was a gay favorite, having been in the first film to use the word 'homosexual,' Victim, later to star with Judy Garland in her grittiest film, I Could Go On Singing. Bogarde's most crowning gay career moment was as Gustav von Aschenbach in Death in Venice. The Servant is creepy and fun with the bonus of a tart and slutty Sarah Miles. At Film Forum in New York July 26 through August 1.