Michael Jackson—no, not that one—is the author of many books on booze and is probably the world’s greatest crusader for the appreciation and understanding of beer. When he brings his collection of ugly ties—donated by appreciative readers—and his extensive knowledge of worldwide brewing traditions to D.C. this year, he’ll be speaking on a subject closer to home: “The Great Beers of the United Kingdom and Ireland.” The discussion will center on how events historical, agricultural, political, and otherwise have led to the creation, demise, and rediscovery of an amazing array of beers. Stouts, porters, milds, bitters, barleywines, scotch ales, and India pale ales will all be addressed. And because seeing, or in this case, tasting, is believing, there will be a sampling of the potables discussed. Get slammed at 7:30 p.m. at the National Geographic Society’s Grosvenor Auditorium, 1600 M St. NW. $30. (202) 857-7700. (Kelly Riles)