Thursday, March 20th

Gala season marches on! Blissfully oblivious to more pressing matters such as Bear Stearns and the skyrocketing costs of hookers these days, the East Side House Settlement revs up a gala preview of the 2008 New York International Auto Show. Thinking of staying home? Well, then you’d miss the actual Batmobile from the yet-to-be-released Heath Ledger Batman flick, which was the doomed Mr. Ledger’s final film (we can’t decide if this is exciting or mildly spooky). Luckily, all thoughts of mortality will be drowned out by the sound of Christie’s Richard Brierley auctioning off a 2009 Lamborghini Gallardo Coupe LP560-4—whatever that is—for which, a rep informs us, “we expect a bidding war between the Wall Street/hedge-fund crowd attending.” (Hmm, given recent events, you might want to auction off a used 1991 Yugo instead. … Up next, the Shinnyo-en Foundation’s “Pathfinders to Peace” gala, honoring acting legend Morgan Freeman, saucy Mira Sorvino and designer Mark Ecko. Also in attendance will be 13-year-old Bianca Ryan, who apparently won something called “America’s Got Talent.” (Note to self: Cancel cable immediately.)

[East Side House Settlement preview of the 2008 New York International Auto Show, Javits Center, 11th Avenue at 35th Street, 6 p.m., 718-292-7392; Pathfinders to Peace, Cipriani 42nd Street, 7 p.m., 212-453-2205]

Thursday, March 20th