Your nick can contain only Alphanumeric characters, underscores, hyphens, [ ] brackets, and the | character... and it can't have spaces.
If you have an IRC client such as X-Chat or mIRC, or something else...
Then you can connect using these settings:
Servers: irc.fnord.us, irc.yaay.us, for the moment.
Port 6667 or 7000.
If you don't have an IRC client, I personally like X-Chat, for windows you should get X-Chat 1.8.11a, the last non-shareware windows version.
If you have any questions just enter the chat above and ask.