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The same week that House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s comment surfaced that women are unsuited for combat because they would get “infections” from sitting in ditches, CBS This Morning’s Paula Zahn was training in combat survival at the Marine Corps boot camp on South Carolina’s Parris Island. “It would be imprudent for me to comment on any politician’s thoughts,” says Zahn, 38, whose rigorous adventure is being broadcast this week (Feb. 13-17). “But I can tell you that, without exception, every female and male recruit I spoke with was numbed by that comment. They felt it was outrageous. Not one male recruit opposed the idea of women serving in combat or being in a foxhole.”


Now that Legends of the Fall is a runaway hit, Aidan Quinn can tell the truth about his hard-riding costars. “I’m not a horseman,” says Quinn, 35, “but I never fell off my horse, like some people who shall remain nameless.” Prod him. “Okay, he has long blond hair.” Twist his arm. “His name sounds something like Brad Pitt.” Quinn likes teasing his friend, especially since Pitt, who admired his work, got him the gig in the first place. “He actually called the studio to get me hired,” says Quinn. “They wanted a bigger name, but he wanted me. We both have brothers, so that sort of connected us to the story. We had extraordinary support for each other and a lot of laughs.” Like when Brad fell out of his saddle but Quinn stayed put? “I did have the cowboys put me on the gentlest, oldest horse they had,” says Quinn. “That’s the only reason my butt wasn’t on the ground.”


John Goodman, a self-proclaimed huge sports fan, will serve as host of the third annual ESPYs, the sports awards show broadcast live on ESPN this Monday (Feb. 13). The Roseanne star never received any sports awards when he played defensive tackle and offensive guard for the Cougars, his Affton, Mo., high school football team. “They gave me a varsity letter out of sympathy,” says Goodman, 42, whose team won a single game his senior year. These days, Goodman is hoping to become slightly less of a fan with the help of a diet doctor. “I’ve lost 30 pounds already,” he says, “eating sensibly and walking 3½ miles a day. I need to drop about 80 more to reach human size—somewhere around 225. It’s my annual fat-cell training: I make bigger, firmer fat cells this way.” But cutting himself down to size isn’t a joke. Says Goodman: “I do this every year, but this time I will succeed. I want to live to see my daughter [Molly, 4] go to college.”


Strangers on a train meet and fall in love. That’s as romantic as it gets, right? Well, only if there’s air-conditioning, according to Julie Delpy, the French actress who falls, en route, for Ethan Hawke in the new movie Before Sunrise. “We were shooting on that train for a week with no air conditioner because it would have interfered with filming,” says Delpy, 23. “Some days the temperature reached 100 degrees inside the car. When I’m looking at Ethan all flushed, I’m really blushing from heat stroke. Luckily I don’t sweat much.” Unlike her character in the movie, Delpy says she would never allow a stranger to pick her up on a train. “I can see it now,” she says. “Some weirdo coming up to me, ‘Hi, honey, would you like to get off the train?’ I’d be scared to death. I’d be yelling, ‘Security!’ ”