'Northern Exposure' loses actor

The Associated Press

SEATTLE ─ Rob Morrow knows some of his "Northern Exposure" colleagues consider him as much a pain as his arrogant, compulsive character, Dr. Joel Fleischman.

He's sorry about that, but he can live with it.

"Ultimately, the people I care about and respect get me," Morrow said in a recent interview with the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. "You can't be liked by everybody, unfortunately."

Morrow, who had a role in the film "Quiz Show," is leaving the series set in fictional Cicely, Alaska, filmed in Washington state, to pursue more movie roles. His character's last appearance will probably be in February.

Morrow allows "there's probably a grain of truth" in complaints about his personality. "But I'm not . megalomaniacal. I don't see it as my show. . I'm completely sensitive to other people and their needs," he said.

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CHICAGO ─ When Judith Barnard and Michael Fain exchanged wedding vows, they agreed to share a career and a name first and last.

Behold Judith Michael, author of eight best sellers after 15 years of marriage.

They were once down to their last $2,000 before selling anything. Then Deceptions came along about 10 years ago, and away they went.

"About the only things that are different are that as we got older we got more adventurous, and we want to do more for the world," Fain said.

Due out next month is A Tangled Web, the couple's sequel to Deceptions. The books tell the stories of twin sisters.

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ROME ─ Alessandra Mussolini, granddaughter of Benito Mussolini, is expecting a child in July.

"I just found out and I'm very, very happy about it," she said Monday.

The 32-year-old politician has been married to Mauro Floriani, a tax police officer, since 1989. It will be their first child.

Mussolini, who ran unsuccessfully for mayor of Naples in December, is serving her second term as a Parliament deputy in the rightist National Alliance party, a member of the governing coalition.

Asked whether she would name a son Benito in honor of her grandfather, Mussolini said she hadn't considered a name yet.

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NEW YORK─ZZ Top's roots are hanging out all over.

The band is releasing an homage-to-the-blues album, "One Foot in the Blues," this month, at the same time a tribute album to blues singer Z.Z. Hill is coming out.

The band took its name from the singer, who died in 1984 of injuries from a car accident. Hill was 49 and at the height of his career. Hill's 1981 "Down Home Blues" spent nearly two years on the rhythm and blues charts.

The tribute to Hill is called "Z. Zelebration."

ZZ Top guitarist Billy Gibbons recalls how the trio decorated their rooms while they were in high school in the '60s with rhythm and blues posters.

"I always liked the alphabet ones, from B.B. King to Z.Z. Hill, and that's how we came up with half our name, ZZ Top," he said.

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