4BETTER OR WORSE- The week in review

Biggest oops: Charlottesville schools director of finance Edward Gillaspie discovers an extra $292K in the budget, thanks to federal funding. One day later, Gillaspie realizes the windfall was wishful thinking, having already been included in the $61.5 million budget that cuts staff and programs, Sarah Barry reports in the Daily Progress.

Oddest choices to call for job references: Members of the Orange County School Board, who had just hired Superintendent William R. Crawford in July, are surprised to learn he is a finalist for the Charlottesville supe job. Crawford withdraws from consideration, according to Kate Andrews' story in the DP.

Most unfortunate alleged fondling: UVA football player and 2004 Western Albemarle High grad Bryan Lescanec, 19, is kicked off the team after being accused of forcibly fondling a 21-year-old student at AJ's Bar and Grill on Elliewood and being charged with assault and battery February 1.

Worst state in which to need a court-appointed lawyer: Virginia, ranking number 50 for what it pays indigent defense lawyers, is looking at a federal lawsuit unless the General Assembly lifts pay caps, NBC29 reports.

Most poignant farewell: The five-year-old girl who lay in her mother's lap at her father's funeral 38 years ago delivers a February 7 eulogy to her mother, Coretta Scott King, at New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Lithonia, Georgia, where the daughter, the Rev. Bernice King, is a minister.

Most likely to join the Peace Corps: UVA alumni, 80 of whom are currently serving, making the university the top producer of volunteers among medium-sized colleges for the fourth year in a row.

Worst news for couch potatoes: All three area pay TV providers– Adelphia Cable, Dish Network, and DirecTV– announce 2006 rate increases, David Hendrick reports in the Progress.

Worst news for UVA students: The cost of dorm living goes up an average $350 effective in the fall 2006 term.

Biggest increase in real estate assessments: Charlottesville property owners average an 18.8 percent bump, with Forrest Street in the Rose Hill neighborhood leading the pack with a 39 percent jump.

Best reminder affordable real estate is just down the road: A report in the Sunday Progress about a possible homicide in "an exclusive gated community in Lynchburg" notes that residences there are "valued in the $200,000 range."

Newest logo: Virginia Tech drops its unwieldy official name, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, from its logo, preferring "Invent the future" instead.

Fieriest rhetoric: No, not Rick Turner. UVA history prof/NAACP chairman Julian Bond likens the Republican Party to the Nazi Party in a February 1 speech at Fayetteville State University in North Carolina, according to WorldNetDaily.

Okay, Rick Turner, too: The president of the Charlottesville Albemarle NAACP bemoans the lack of support for former school superintendent Scottie Griffin, charging in his State of African-American Affairs at UVA Rotunda speech February 2 that she was "lynched."

Best seller: Charlottesville Radio Group saleswoman Michelle DeLang Conner wins radio's prestigious "Street Fighter of the Year" award at a recent Texas convention.

Worst loss of a feminine icon: Betty "The Feminine Mystique" Friedan dies February 4 on her 85th birthday.

Worst loss for Munsters fans: Actor Al "Grandpa" Lewis dies February 3 at age 82.

Biggest celebrity break-up: Lance "Tour de France Champ" Armstrong and Sheryl "All I Wanna Do (is Have Some Fun)" Crow hang up their engagement and call it quits.

Most over-anticipated threat: The Kama Sutra virus, which threatens to wreak havoc on computers February 3, unleashes more of a whimper than a bang.