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Arts and Entertainment

Pencil This In: Fitty Cent Coffees, Experimental Film at MOCA, a Burbank Lit Event and Dan O'Shannon on Comedy

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We found a number of lit events happening around town tonight, including comedy's 'big picture' from Dan O'Shannon; a new Burbank lit reading event; Los Angeles Filmforum at MOCA; and 50 cent Heritage coffee drinks at Coffee Bean. Read on for all the details.

The Hammer Museum continues its Hammer Readings series tonight at 7:30 pm with writer Dan O’Shannon, producer and writer of the ABC show Modern Family. He’s discussing his storied career (Newhart, Cheers and Frasier) and latest book, What Are You Laughing At? A Comprehensive Guide to the Comedic Event, which takes an entirely new approach to comedy theory. Free. Park for $3 under the museum after 6 pm.

Book’d in Burbank is a new night of lit/comedy/readings that launches tonight at 8 pm at Theatre Banshee. Included in the evening are eight-minute readings from local authors, stand-up literary comedy, a book giveaway, raffle, dessert and reception, and book drive to benefit Reading Partners, a youth literacy nonprofit. Tickets: $10.

Today from 2-6 pm, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf celebrates 50 years of coffee and tea culture in 2013 by holding a Winter House at participating locations in SoCal with $.50 (select 12 oz. heritage beverages), including: English Toffee Latte, English Toffee Ice Blended and Chai Tea Latte. Go, get caffeinated.

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Los Angeles Filmforum presents an evening of experimental film—Breaking the Plane—tonight at 7 pm at MOCA. The film program is being held in conjunction with the exhibition Destroy the Picture: Painting the Void, 1949-1962. Films include works by Ken Jacobs, Stan Brakhage, Carolee Schneemann and Takahiko Iimura that “puncture the image, three-dimensionalize the film surface, or otherwise challenge the traditional cinematic experience.” Tickets: $12, free for members of MOCA or Los Angeles Filmforum.

Two book events caught our attention tonight. Jojo Moyes is at Pages: A Bookstore in Manhattan Beach to read from her new “heartbreakingly romantic” novel Me Before You tonight at 7 pm. Also reading tonight at 7 pm at The Paper Bag Princess in Beverly Hills are Angeleno residents, jewelry designer/fashion illustrator Jemi Armstrong and former stylist Linda Arroz, authors of Affordable Couture. Their book is an insider’s guide to vintage and designer resale and includes an international shopping guide to six cities. Reception and cocktails. RSVP.

Comedy Palace, a free comedy show, takes over the Palace Restaurant tonight and every Thursday at 9:30 pm. Guests tonight include Jane Borden (New York Times Magazine, Saturday Night Live,); Melissa Stephens (Key & Peele, Californication); Hampton Yount (MTV, Adult Swim, G4, TruTV); Johnny Pemberton (21 Jump Street); Kurt Braunohler (Bob's Burgers, Delocated) and more.

*Pencil pick of the day

Want more events? Follow me on Twitter (@christineziemba). Or follow Lauren Lloyd—who takes care of Pencil on Wednesdays (@LadyyyLloyd).