Questions and answers:

From Sandra Johnson of Northeast: "I went to the doctor's the other day. Over the Muzak speaker, I heard this syrupy version of an old Rolling Stones song, 'Can't Get No Satisfaction.' But that song is not meant to be played by a bunch of violins! It's meant to shake you from your head to your toes, not lull you to sleep. Don't doctors realize that they're only making patients sicker by ruining perfectly good rock and roll?"

I asked a few doctors about this, Sandra, including some young enough to have rocked to the Stones themselves. Most said they had better things to worry about.

One said he'd speak to the company that supplies his tapes to see if he couldn't obtain some Mozart instead. But I wouldn't expect to walk into a doctor's office any time soon and hear the original pulse-pounding version of "Satisfaction." Granted, it's unsettling to hear vintage rock and roll turned into lukewarm oatmeal. But to a lot of people, vintage rock is pretty unsettling, too.

From Charlotte Brown of Kensington: "I was in the Kensington Safeway the day before Thanksgiving when all of a sudden, a woman started taking off her clothes. She turned out to be one of these rent-a-strippers. It was the manager's birthday, and all the employes had pitched in to hire this woman. She got down to a bra and panties in no time. And she was doing it up by the cash registers, where everybody could see. But here's the thing: nobody went around the store warning mothers with little children that the show was about to happen. The employes all thought it was pretty funny. I didn't. Any comment?"

I can't blame employes for wanting to give their boss a gag gift, Charlotte. And under the right circumstances, I think a rent-a-stripper would be a big laugh-getter.

But I can't imagine circumstances that would have been less right. Why couldn't the show have been held after hours? Weren't any of the employes offended enough to object? And as you point out, the very least the store could have done would have been to warn parents with small kids.

From Bert Schlesinger of Fredericksburg: "This ad was in your paper on Tuesday (The ad said that space was available in an "intelligent" Northern Virginia office building called Skyline City). I'd love to know who can tell the difference between an intelligent building and a nonintelligent one!"

You can tell the difference, Bert. So can anybody. Here's the explanation given by Mike Shehadi, senior vice president for management of the Charles E. Smith Company, which placed the ad: " 'Intelligent building' means the building is wired for voice and data communications so that a tenant can subscribe to voice or data services." It also means the building's "life support systems" can run without human attention.

According to Peter Silvestri, a public relations specialist for United Technologies Building Systems Company, which wired Skyline City, that building's elevators, heating and air systems are computerized and automated -- thus requiring less maintenance.

From Steve Koenig, who is serving in the U.S. Embassy in Abidjan, Ivory Coast: "C&P Telephone has sent me a couple of notices regarding an overdue bill. I found it curious that C&P would, with each notice, send a window envelope when they don't send an address card to put in it. Did they think I'd type a letter so carefully that I could get the forwarding and return address to fit in the window?"

It seems to be a simple, Koenig-only error, Steve -- not a policy that affects thousands. "Someone must have put the envelopes in inadvertently," said C&P spokesman Web Chamberlin. He promises it won't happen again.

From Sandra Santy of Falls Church: "I am so tired of having to interrupt my dinner or evening activities for telephone sales pitches. Usually, calls occur between 5 p.m. and 7:30. But last night, it was almost 9 p.m. when someone called to offer me a Hecht's charge account! Isn't that awfully late?"

Bob Holbrook, Hecht's vice president and credit manager, had this to say:

"The only time you can contact a family is between 6 and 9 p.m. If both family members work, you will find someone at home at that time. We have never received any complaints before, and we have been calling people for at least the last ten years. It has not been a problem. I am 99 percent certain we are not the only company calling. As long as you have a listed telephone number, you will be contacted. The phone book is a matter of public record."

I'd call that explanation mighty lame. Even if other companies call at 9 p.m., that doesn't make it right. And what about families with small children (Sandra has a 14-month-old)? Nine in the evening is to them what midnight is to everybody else. I'd guess that Hecht's would come up with just as many charge account takers if it stopped calling an hour earlier. late?"

Bob Holbrook, Hecht's vice president and credit manager, had this to say:

"The only time you can contact a family is between 6 and 9 p.m. If both family members work, you will find someone at home at that time. We have never received any complaints before, and we have been calling people for at least the last ten years. It has not been a problem. I am 99 percent certain we are not the only company calling. As long as you have a listed telephone number, you will be contacted. The phone book is a matter of public record."

I'd call that explanation mighty lame. Even if other companies call at 9 p.m., that doesn't make it right. And what about families with small children (Sandra has a 14-month-old)? Nine in the evening is to them what midnight is to everybody else. I'd guess that Hecht's would come up with just as many charge account takers if it stopped calling an hour earlier.