Feb. 3: Joyce Carol Oates, sketch comedy and more

Who's in town

Joyce Carol Oates, who was awarded the National Medal of Humanities by President Barack Obama, is reading from her latest book, “The Sacrifice.” [7 p.m., City Lights, 261 Columbus Ave., S.F.]


Alzheimer's science: Scientist Patricia Renaut Spilman shares new advances in the fight against Alzheimer's disease and discusses lifestyle changes that could lower the risk of the disease. [5:15 p.m., Commonwealth Club, 595 Market St., S.F.]

Master negotiator: William Ury, best-selling author of “Getting to Yes,” discusses how to be a better negotiator. [6 p.m., Commonwealth Club, 595 Market St., S.F.]

Water crisis: Photographer Rudi Dundas, who has traveled the world documenting the hardships of people who lack access to clean water, shares stories from her travels. [6 p.m., World Affairs Council, 312 Sutter St., S.F.]

Literary events

Book club: The Women We'd Like to Lunch With Book Club discusses “We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves” by Karen Joy Fowler. [7 p.m., Books Inc., 3515 California St., S.F.]

At the public library

Chocolate tasting: Youths 8-18 can sample a variety of sweets in a Valentine's Day chocolate tasting. [3:30 p.m., North Beach Branch, 850 Columbus Ave., S.F.]

Chinese New Year crafts: Artist Maria Fong demonstrates how red envelopes can be turned into paper fish in a Chinese New Year crafting session. Register in advance by calling (415) 355-5727. [4 p.m., Western Addition Branch, 1550 Scott St., S.F.]

Award-winning fiction: NoViolet Bulawayo, winner of the Pen/Hemingway Award, reads from her book “We Need New Names” and answers questions. [6 p.m., Koret Auditorium, Main Library, 100 Larkin St., S.F.]

At the colleges

Women in film: The Clayman Institute for Gender Research hosts professor Jan Krawitz speaking about her film “Perfect Strangers,” which follows an ill woman and an organ donor on parallel journeys. [4:15 p.m., Serra House, Stanford University, 589 Capistrano Way, Stanford]

Local activities

Asylum documentary: Frederick Wiseman's documentary “Titicut Follies” explores the Bridgewater State Hospital for the Criminally Insane in Massachusetts. [7 p.m., Pacific Film Archive, 2526 Bancroft Way, Berkeley]

Comedy troupe: SF Sketchfest presents Los Angeles-based sketch troupe Good Neighbor, which features members of the “Saturday Night Live” cast. [8 p.m., Cobb's Comedy Club, 915 Columbus Ave., S.F.]

Stand-up comedy: Nico Santos, who has appeared on Showtime's ” Pride Comedy Jam,” got his comedy start in the Bay Area. [8 p.m., Punch Line Comedy Club, 444 Battery St., S.F.]

Live music: Pop duo The Blow is eschewing laptops and sound machines in favor of live instruments in its “Unplugged” tour. [8 p.m., Chapel, 777 Valencia St., S.F.]

Rock show: Philadelphia psychedelic-pop group Nothing headlines a bill that includes Whirr and The Videos. [9 p.m., Bottom of the Hill, 1233 17th St., S.F.]

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