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THURSDAY

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Damn you again, John Ashcroft! Everyone wondering why Dave Attell’s hypnotic, alcoholic reality show Insomniac With Dave Attell has never shot in the District can blame the departing attorney general. As Attell told the Onion’s AV Club, the show’s producers have long wanted to come here, but “security” is always an issue. “We just finally got some access [in D.C.], and then we went to Code Orange.” So now we know what those phony-baloney terror alerts are really about: desperate attempts by fear-based Republicans to keep liberal, party-minded comedians and their camera crews from prying too deeply into Washington’s night life. But Attell harbors no hard feelings. He is coming to town—but to do his stand-up act, not the show. Don’t expect to be caught on tape; do expect to be caught off-guard by Attell’s relentlessly off-color and off-kilter jokes. Such as this: “There’s a fine line between cuddling and holding someone down so they can’t get away.” Attell performs at 10:30 p.m. (see City List for other dates) at the Improv, 1140 Connecticut Ave. NW. $25. (202) 296-7008. (Dave Nuttycombe)