Q: How do you get to be a contestant on the game shows on Comedy Central, such as Win Ben Stein's Money?
A: If you'd like to match wits and intellect against writer, professor and former presidential speechwriter Ben Stein, call (213) 520-4236. To be a contestant, you must be able to audition for the show in Los Angeles this month, and you must also be in Los Angeles for taping in February or March.
Q: How do I get hold of the rock band Nazareth?
A: If you're interested in learning more about the band, which has been together for more than 30 years, you may want to check out Nazareth's official World Wide Web site at http://rocksolidinc.com/-
nazareth. There, you can read a history of the band, see their discography and join the fan club. Fan club members are given the chance to correspond with band members.
Q: Who is Jim Crow? What was his profession and why is he always mentioned in connection with segregation?
A: Jim Crow wasn't a real person, but rather a black character in a popular song from the 1830s. The name Jim Crow soon became synonymous with the segregation of whites and blacks. The term became common during the 1880s, when racial segregation was legalized in much of the South. The so-called Jim Crow laws, however, were later declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court.
Q: What is the address for the ice skater Katarina Witt?
A: You may write to the German figure skater at Lindenstr 8, 1624A, Altenhol, Germany.
Q: On Nov. 1, I was watching a PBS show called Sessions at West 54th. A band with a female lead singer performed. What is the name of the band?
A: You saw the band Rickie Lee Jones and Tindersticks performing on Sessions at West 54th. The hip-hop-influenced band is from England, and its current album is Ghostyhead. For information about upcoming or past performances on Sessions at West 54th,
Q: Where can I write to Percy Sledge, who wrote When A Man Loves A Woman?
A: You may write to Mr. Sledge, nicknamed the Golden Voice of Soul, at 9850 Saddlefoot Blvd. No. 348, Boca Raton, FL 33428. By the way, When a Man Loves a Woman was the first song Mr. Sledge recorded, and it was the first gold record released by Atlantic Records.
Q: I'm a big The X-Files fan, and I know that each episode has a title, but I can never find the title when the show is broadcast. Where can I find out episode names? Are they shown at the beginning or the end of the show?
A: The titles of The X-Files episodes never actually appear on television. But you can find out titles of past and upcoming shows by visiting the official X-Files Web site: http://www.thex-files.com.
Q: What has been the worst single-plane disaster ever in terms of the number of deaths?
A: The worst single-plane crash occurred Aug. 12, 1985, when a Japan Airlines Boeing 747 crashed into Mount Ogura, killing 520 people.
Q: Who was the first woman to win the same marathon two years in a row?
A: Uta Pippig of Germany claimed this title in 1995 with her second consecutive win in the Boston Marathon. The 1995 race also saw the third consecutive Boston Marathon win of Cosmos N'Deti of Kenya. This was the first time in history that both a man and woman won consecutive marathons at the same time.
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