Tina Delgado remains a mystery

Sunday, July 29, 2012

By Gary Clothier

Question: I grew up in Southern California in the 1960s; radio was a big part of my life. On one station, a young girl would shout out, "Tina Delgado is alive! Alive!" Who is this Tina Delgado?

A.Z., Torrance, Calif.

Answer: On Los Angeles radio in the late 1950s and early '60s, disc jockey Don Steele -- also known as "The Real Don Steele" -- would play a recording of a woman shouting, "Tina Delgado is alive! Alive!" between top 40 hits. Steele died of lung cancer in 1997; he never divulged the meaning. Steele was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1995.

Question: I have been watching "Gunsmoke" all my life, and I'm still the biggest fan. When the actors are at the saloon drinking "beer," what are they actually drinking?

S.S., Hawthorne, Calif.

Answer: I checked many different sources and called several local thespians, and they all said the same thing: Years ago, the drink was known as "near beer," but it's just called nonalcoholic beer these days.

DID YOU KNOW: After an online vote in 2011, Toyota announced that the official plural of Prius is Prii.

Question: Recently, I heard a reading by David Birney. I remember him from earlier TV days. What was the name of his TV show, and can you provide any other information?

M.E., Whittier, Calif.

Answer: David Birney was born in 1939 in Washington, D.C. He starred in the TV series "Bridget Loves Bernie" in the early 1970s. He also played the part of Officer Frank Serpico in the series "Serpico" in the late '70s. He has been a guest actor on numerous TV shows over the years, and he had recurring roles in "St. Elsewhere," "The Love Boat," "Glitter" and others. Birney was married to Meredith Baxter from 1974 to 1989. They had three children together.

Question: I have a true or false question concerning the actor Jamie Foxx. Is he the grandson of the late Redd Foxx?

R.D.E., Fort Smith, Ark.

Answer: False. Jamie Foxx's real name is Eric Marlon Bishop. His stage surname is a tribute to Redd Foxx.

Question: Did George Clooney play Jackie's no-good boyfriend, Booker, on "Roseanne"?

M.T., Owensboro, Ky.

Answer: You are absolutely correct. Clooney played Booker Brooks in 11 episodes from 1988 to 1991.

Question: I am fond of British actor Bob Hoskins. I've seen him in numerous British and American films. Who is he? Has he been acknowledged as the fine actor that he is?

J.M., Sinking Spring, Pa.

Answer: Bob Hoskins was born in 1949 in Suffolk, England. In the 1960s, while having a drink in a local pub, he was urged by a friend to go upstairs where auditions were being held for a play. He did, and he got the part -- thus the beginning of his acting career. He has been involved in the industry ever since.

Hoskins has been nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe, and he won a BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) award for best actor in 1986 for "Mona Lisa." He has the wide approval of critics.

Hoskins is married to his second wife. He has four children -- two from his first marriage and two from his second.

Question: Years ago I used to enjoy watching Benny Hill on TV. Since Hill's death, there have been no reruns that I know of. Is his work gone forever?

E.D., Fort Smith, Ark.

Answer: "The Benny Hill Show" does not appear to be very popular in the world of reruns. If you have access to a computer, you can buy DVDs of the show on Amazon.com.

Send your questions to Mr. Know-It-All at AskMrKIA@gmail.com or c/o Universal Uclick, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.

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