If originality were measured in dollars, then comedian MARIA BAMFORD would be a multimillionaire. One of the truly unique thinkers and performers working the circuit today, Bamford's mockingly cerebral brand of joke-telling epitomizes what the alt-comedy genre strives to achieve. Do yourself a favor and go see her while she's in town. She performs for four nights at the Laughing Skull Lounge. $20-$28. Thurs.-Fri., 8 and 10 p.m.; Sat., 10 p.m.; Sun., 7 and 9 p.m. 878 Peachtree St. 877-523-3288. www.vortexcomedy.com.