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Lively little wine with an inexpensive bouquet

Question: ABC's 20/20 recently profiled a wine costing $1.99 a bottle. Where is it available?

Answer: According to ABC News, the "super value wine," sold under the label Charles Shaw, is sold exclusively at Trader Joe's stores.

Trader Joe's has almost 200 stores in Arizona, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington.

The hot-selling wine, known as "Two Buck Chuck," is the result of a glut of California grapes, which Fred Franzia bought to create his rock-bottom-priced wine. Franzia is CEO of Bronco Wine Co. of Ceres, Calif., which also produces wines under the Montpelier, FoxHollow, ForestVille, Grand Cru, Hacienda and Napa Ridge brands, among others.

ABC News conducted a blind taste test with 10 students at the Art Institute of New York City, Manhattan's largest culinary school. Both the red and white varieties of "Two Buck Chuck" were found to hold their own, even inching ahead of a $50 chardonnay, ABC said.

Adding up Americans

Question: I recently heard a news story about the nation's population heading toward 300-million, but no current figure was given. What is the population?

Answer: As of Jan. 20, it was estimated at 292,417,080 and counting, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Color-coded politics

Question: What's the origin of "blue states" and "red states" in relation to voting results?

Answer: The terms came into use from widely shown maps depicting how the states voted in the 2000 presidential election.

A map is a popular graphic device to communicate election results, so CNN and NBC, among others, used the different colors simply to distinguish between the Republican and Democratic party candidates.

The so-called "red states" are the 30 states carried by George W. Bush; the "blue states" are the 20 (along with the District of Columbia) carried by former Vice President Al Gore.

Greetings to the troops

Question: President Bush made 10 phone calls to our troops in Iraq and around the world for Christmas. Who were the recipients?

Answer: Bush's Christmas Eve calls were two each to members of the Air Force, Navy, Army, Marines and Coast Guard, said White House spokesman Allen Abney.

"He called to wish them happy holidays and to thank them for their service to the country," Abney said.

Bush made the calls from Camp David. He talked to troops stationed in Afghanistan, Iraq and Bosnia, sailors aboard naval vessels and guardsmen on their Coast Guard cutters.