FIREWORKS--So what if the atheists have taken the Pledge of Allegiance out of our schools? They'll never take away our fireworks displays! (Two of the best, by the way, will occur tonight at the Waterfront Park Blues Fest, and at Oaks Park in Sellwood. Don't bother with the one in Vancouver... the yahoos will drive you crazy.) God bless America, and fuck you, atheists! WSH
Tom McCall Waterfront Park, Front Street, and Oaks Park, base of Sellwood Bridge, free

MUSIC & CHILI--Today, Johnny X and the Groadies celebrate their sixth birthday with their third annual chili cook-off. Bring on your best mix of black beans, stewed tomatoes, Tabasco sauce, and... (ooohhh nooooo, wait a minute, I won't reveal all of my secret ingredients). For more about the birthday band and their friends (The Unsounds, Spaceboy, Punishment for the Bad), see Music. PB
Fast Forward, 6616 NE MLK Blvd, starts around 4 pm, free

FRIDAY, July 5

FREE FLAGS!--Our blind worship of America continues at the Northwest Film Center & Mercury's Summer Movie Megathon! Tonight, President Harrison Ford and Commie terrorist Gary Oldman beat the crap out of each other aboard Air Force One, in a movie appropriately titled Air Force One. Yes, there will be beer and yes, 150 free American flags will be given away to wave whenever the Prez kicks a terrorist in the nuts. WSH
Guild Theatre, 829 SW 9th Ave, 221-1156, Bar opens at 10:30, Film at 11, $5

MUSIC--Call me crazy, but I love shows at Disjecta. The room is huge and airy, and you can escape the music to comfortable couches. This show is a perfect match for the kitschy space. +/-, with members of Versus (they may even bust out some Versus songs), plays floaty Grandaddy-esque music, with loads of extras, crazy drumming, electronic samples, and overdriven guitar fuzz that's warm and tropical, but still rocks. KS
Disjecta, 116 NE Russell, 8 pm, $7

DANCE--Americans always copy what's hot in our national grandpappy land, England, so jump on this before it becomes (sniff) mainstream. Bassism7 is a dance night with DJs spinning the break-heavy, R&B boogies that are the next revolution in clubbing. MS
Fez, 316 SW 11th, 221-7262 ext. 41, 10 pm, $6


GRANDMASTER-- All hail the grandfather of hiphop and breakbeats, Grandmaster Flash! And while this pioneering turntable technician rarely tours, you can catch him tonight promoting his new "Essential Mix" CD, and spinning great tunes from hiphop past and present (and surely, old standbys such as "The Message"). And no standing against the wall, stump-ass. Remember, you are here to dance. WSH
w/DJ Izm and Berlin; Ohm, 31 NW 1st Ave, 224-TIXX, 9 pm, $14-17

SUNDAY, July 7

ELVIS LIVES--Extreme Elvis is exactly what his name suggests; a dude who sings Elvis songs, with an extreme twist--like he promises to shit and puke and fornicate on stage. Rumor has it he doesn't always live up to the promise, but check it out for yourself. KD
Dante's, 1 SW 3rd Avenue, 226-6630, 9 pm, $6

FUTBOL--This is probably the best soccer game that you'll see all year (and, yes, I know that the World Cup just ended and that was fairly exciting). Live in Portland, Chivas of Guadalajara--Mexico's most popular team--rumbles with Cruz Azul--Mexico's most powerful and unflinchingly ruthless squad. PB
PGE Park, 1844 SW Morrison, 553-5400, 1 pm, $30

MONDAY, July 8

GREAT SHOW--Holy shite. First, punchy B.C. rockers Hot Hot Heat sweatify your nervous beat-punk antics; next, the incredible Volta Do Mar amaze with guitar-nerd prowess, dizzying time signatures, and the occasional shouted vocals; finally, NYC's SEXY Gang-of-Four-on-the-dancefloor punkers Radio 4 turn on the booty machine with politics and tight rhythms. AND IT'S FREE! I think I'm gonna pass out. JS
Blackbird, 3728 NE Sandy, 282-9949, 9 pm, free


MOVIE--To attain a balanced life, one must counteract the self-deception and premature wrinkles of happiness and sunshine. Lord love the French and films like The Town Is Quiet. A stiff shot of junkies, prostitution, and betrayal oughta round you out. MS
Hollywood Theatre, 4122 NE Sandy, 281-4215, 7, 9:40, $5


READING--Indie cultural critic Paul Krassner's new book is called Murder at the Conspiracy Convention, and is chock full of interesting thoughts on topics such as Timothy McVeigh and John Lennon. Krassner is here as part of the zine symposium, so if you miss him at Powell's, catch him next weekend. KD
Powell's City of Books, 1005 W Burnside, 228-4651, 7:30 pm, free