courtesy photoBlitzen Trapper performs at the Regency Ballroom. “VII” is the country-folk band’s new album.

November 5: Blitzen Trapper and other SF events

Who’s in town

Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer and historian Doris Kearns Goodwin discusses her latest book, “The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism.” [7:30 p.m., Nourse Theater, 275 Hayes St., S.F.]

Lectures

Peter Baker: The New York Times senior White House correspondent discusses the administration of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney and the pair’s shifting relationship. [Noon, Commonwealth Club, 595 Market St., S.F.]

‘Fracked State’: Panelists discuss hydraulic fracturing, carbon-pollution reduction efforts and other energy issues affecting California. [6:30 p.m., Commonwealth Club, 595 Market St., S.F.]

Art lecture: Docent Julia Geist discusses “Artful Animals,” an exhibit featuring a diverse collection of artist interpretations of the animal world. [1 p.m., Legion of Honor, 100 34th Ave., S.F.]

Literary events

Tom Peek: The novelist talks about “Daughters of Fire.” [7 p.m., Bookshop West Portal, 80 West Portal Ave., S.F.]

Allie Brosh: The artist and blogger reads from “Hyperbole and a Half.” [7 p.m., Neck of the Woods, 406 Clement St., S.F.; RSVP: www.greenapplebooks.com]

Joachim Bechtle: The novelist reads from “Hotel van Gogh.” [7 p.m., Goethe-Institut, 530 Bush St., S.F.]

Anne and Christopher Rice: The mother-and-son authors celebrate the release of their latest books: “The Wolves of Midwinter” (Anne) and “The Heavens Rise” (Christopher). [7 p.m., Books Inc., 601 Van Ness, S.F.]

At the colleges

Film screening: Program features a screening of “A Grin Without a Cat,” Chris Marker’s 1977 film essay about global political turmoil in the 1960s and 1970s. [7 p.m., Cubberley Auditorium, Stanford University, 485 Lasuen Mall, Stanford]

At the public library

Literary series: Radar Reading series, featuring underground and emerging writers, welcomes authors Wendy McNaughton and Carolyn Paul, among others. [6 p.m., Latino/Hispanic Room, Main Library, 100 Larkin St., S.F.]

Homework help: Volunteers assist K-7 students with homework assignments. [4 to 6 p.m., Excelsior Branch, 4400 Mission St., S.F.]

Country-folk band

Blitzen Trapper performs at the Regency Ballroom. “VII” is the country-folk band’s new album. [8 p.m., Regency Ballroom, 1300 Van Ness Ave., S.F.]

Local activities

Early sci-fi: As part of its Free First Tuesdays program, the Contemporary Jewish Museum hosts a screening of “Metropolis” (1927), Fritz Lang’s epic, German-expressionist, silent sci-fi film. [2 p.m., 736 Mission St., S.F.]

Saluting Shepard: “Sam Shepard’s Birthday Bash” features 24 hours of goings-on honoring Shepard and his plays. It benefits Magic Theatre. [Dawn to dawn, Fleet Room, Building D, Fort Mason Center, Marina Boulevard and Buchanan Street, S.F.; www.magictheatre.org]

Midday music: Violinist Mariya Borozina and pianist Irina Behrendt perform sonatas by Beethoven and Schubert. Noontime Concerts presents the program. [12:30 p.m., Old St. Mary’s Cathedral, 660 California St., S.F.]

Fog City: The wood-oven-roasted chicken, with charred Brentwood corn, crispy potatoes and spiced Maldon salt, is recommended today. The house-made custards, which play a role in several dessert dishes, are also highlighted. [1300 Battery St.; (415) 982-2000]artsBlitzen Trapper

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