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ASK MR KNOW IT ALL: Wondering about 'The Wonder Years'

on April 07, 2013 1:50 AM

Question: Who was the voice of adult Kevin Arnold on “The Wonder Years”? — S.P., Salisbury, Md.

Answer: Daniel Stern voiced adult Kevin on “The Wonder Years.” The sitcom, which aired from 1988 to 1993, starred Fred Savage as Kevin, with Stern providing narration. Stern is well known for his roles in “City Slickers” (1991) with Billy Crystal, and as the robber Marv in “Home Alone” (1990) and “Home Alone 2: Lost in New York” (1992).

Question: There is an opening line to a poem: “Laugh, and the world laughs with you;/Weep, and you weep alone.” What is the complete poem? Who wrote it? — P.Z., Peachtree City, Ga.

Answer: Ella Wheeler Wilcox wrote the poem “Solitude” in 1883, and it is considered her most famous work. The poem was first published in the New York Sun and was later part of her book “Poems of Passion.” If you enjoy poetry, I highly recommend it.

Here’s the first stanza of “Solitude”:

Laugh, and the world laughs with you;

Weep, and you weep alone.

For the sad old earth must borrow its mirth,

But has trouble enough of its own.

Sing, and the hills will answer;

Sigh, it is lost on the air.

The echoes bound to a joyful sound,

But shrink from voicing care.

Question: When was the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile introduced to the public? — K.N., Clearwater, Fla.

Answer: Carl Mayer, the nephew of lunchmeat mogul Oscar Mayer, came up with the advertising gimmick in 1936. The first Wienermobile rolled out the front door of General Body Co.’s factory in Chicago that July.

There are eight active Wienermobiles traveling the country today.

Question: What is the name of the sport in which a participant ascends the point of highest elevation within a given area? That area could be a county, state, country or continent. — J.T.L., Bedford, Ind.

Answer: The sport you’re thinking of is called “highpointing.”

One example of someone highpointing is climbing the highest point of each U.S. state — some of which are not very tall. Of course, the most ambitious activity is taking on the Seven Summits, which requires the climber to reach the top of the tallest mountain on each continent.

Question: Several years ago, I heard a comment during a TV show that has puzzled me ever since. It went something like, “A famous author gave acknowledgment to the person who killed him.” I’m not sure I have the wording right, but is this enough information for you find out who it was? — O.M., Bethel Park, Pa.

Answer: You are probably referring to Dr. Herman Tarnower, author of the best-selling “The Complete Scarsdale Medical Diet.” A lifelong bachelor, Tarnower had an on-again-off-again relationship with Jean Harris. In 1979, he began having an affair with Lynne Tryforos. When Harris found out, she murdered him.

In his book, published in 1978, he acknowledges Harris: “We are grateful to Jean Harris for her splendid assistance in the research and writing of this book.” Two paragraphs later, he thanks Tryforos.

Question: Where is Blackpool in Ireland? I know there is one in England, but I can’t locate the Irish namesake. — L.R., Waynesboro, Va.

Answer: I don’t know of any such place in Ireland, but I suspect you might be referring to Dublin. “Dublin” is Gaelic for “black pool.” The city got its name for the black-colored waters of the Liffey River.

Question: Where was the movie “On Golden Pond” filmed? Is there such a place? — K.I.B., Hempstead, N.Y.

Answer: Golden Pond exists only in our hearts and imaginations. The 1981 movie was filmed at Squam Lake, New Hampshire’s second largest lake, near the town of Holderness. Henry Fonda, Jane Fonda and Katharine Hepburn starred in the film.

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

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