Oct. 17 2012 01:22 PM

Our top three picks of San Diego events this week

Davy Rothbart
Photo by Dan Busta

1 Random acts of findness

The co-founder of FOUND magazine’s phone goes straight to a gag voicemail recorded by Kid Rock that says Davy Rothbart left his phone in Rock’s tour van. A few minutes later, Rothbart calls back with spotty reception as he drives through the Redwoods.

Rothbart and his brother Peter have been publishing the magazine of discovered ephemera for 10 years, but they’ve also been translating those artifacts into energetic, alternately hilarious and heartbreaking performances before live audiences for nearly as long. On Friday, Oct. 19, the FOUND Show will be performed twice in a single day in San Diego.

”We get a lot of great finds from San Diego,” Rothbart says. “But what I’m most struck by—and we get about 10 or 20 finds in the mail every day—are the similarities…. You might read a note written by some wealthy banker, you might read a note by a guy in a prison cell, and the language they use may be different, but the way they express themselves, the core emotions behind each find, they resonate so deeply with each other.”

The latest issue is out this week, but that’s not all the Rothbarts are promoting. A songwriter, Peter Rothbart has a new album, You Are What You Dream, and Davy Rothbart has just published a collection of essays, My Heart is an Idiot.

The book is steeped in the “found” aesthetic, from the purple hardback binding, which is an exact match to a 1970s technical manual he found at a garage sale, to the intimate accounts of his romantic foibles. Already, it’s buried in praise from the likes of Dave Eggers, Ira Glass and, yes, Kid Rock.

The first FOUND performance is free and starts at 2 p.m. at the El Cajon Public Library (201 E. Douglas Ave.). At 8 p.m., the Rothbarts will present a less library-friendly version at 3rd Space in University Heights (4610 Park Blvd.) that’ll cost $10. found magazine.com/events

Beer to the streets

In 2007, before Consortium Holdings had a mini-empire of hip bars with tasty grub—Craft & Commerce, et al.—Arsalun Tafazoli opened his first place, Neighborhood Ale House. It’s gone on to become an East Village institution, and to celebrate five years of Downtown craft-beer trailblazing, Neighborhood and Sezio are taking it to the streets for an all-out shindig with art activities, music by El Dorado and Five & A Dime, food by MIHO Gastrotruck and a beer garden between Market and G streets. It goes down from 1 to 6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20; for $10, partygoers get 32 ounces of beer tasters and a commemorative stein. Word has it that Stone, The Lost Abbey and Ballast Point are all brewing something special for the occasion. sezio.org

San Dieghouls

San Diego’s known as a hotbed for paranormal activity. In his book, Piercing the Veil: Examining San Diego’s Haunted History, author and historian Charles Spratley uncovers the history and truth behind some of the city’s most haunted sites, like the Whaley House and the Hotel Del Coronado. And, well, he’s also the owner of a local ghost-tour company, so, you know, there’s that. Spratley will sign copies of his book and lead an illustrated talk on San Diego’s supernatural world from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 18, at the San Diego History Center in Balboa Park. Tickets are $5, with an additional charge for the book. This should get you in the spooky Halloween mood. sandiegohistory.org

Does your event deserve to be in our top three? Email our events editor, Alex Zaragoza. You can also bug her on Twitter.