The week in review

Worst Iraq analysis: The war could take much longer than anticipated, according to Lt. Gen. William Wallace, the Army's senior ground commander in Iraq.

Worst gaffe by a war correspondent: Peter Arnett in Baghdad is fired by National Geographic, NBC, and MSNBC less than two weeks into the war after he gives an interview to Iraqi TV and opines that the first part of the American invasion had failed.

Best rebound: Less than 24 hours later, Arnett is hired by the Daily Mirror, a London tabloid.

Best civil disobedience: Seven people are arrested for trespassing at Sperry Marine on U.S. 29 March 28. The Daily Progress reports that five of the protesters covered themselves with beet juice and chained themselves to one another through pipes and an oil drum.

Worst Greene County hostage situation: George Minor of Culpeper, wanted in the death of his girlfriend, commandeers a Lowest Price Gas Station March 26 and holds four hostages for six hours, before shooting himself in the abdomen.

Best heroic dive: Greene Sheriff William Morris gradually makes his way close to Minor during negotiations, then tackles and disarms him, according to an Olympia Meola and Reed Williams story in the Daily Progress. Morris suffers a bruised knee and rib.

Worst alleged videotaping: Timothy Franklin Landes is charged with unlawful filming after he leaves a toolbox with a camera in the bathroom of a western Albemarle home where he'd done drywall work. Landes is also charged with producing and possessing child pornography.

Best break for school board candidate Brian Wheeler: His opponent for Albemarle's at-large seat, Gary Grant, announces he will not seek reƫlection for a second term.

Worst loss of a reliable source: Grant's departure means no more of his Constituents' Reports, the best way for freeloaders to find out what happens at County school board meetings.

Worst final chapter: Ivy Industries lays off its remaining employees, including 100 in West Virginia, and its properties are repossessed by Guaranty Bank.

Worst indictment of a former UVA basketball star: Ralph Sampson is charged with failing to pay more than $51,000 in child support. Released on $40,000 bond, he's scheduled to appear in court in Richmond April 7 and Charlottesville April 9.

Worst week for William and Mary: Two students commit suicide. Freshman Gregory Thomas Bak jumps from a fourth-floor window at his dorm, and first-year law student Betsy John shoots herself off campus.

Worst loss for Buffalo Bills: Former tight end Pat Kelly, 37, dies from brain cancer March 28 in Charlottesville, where he'd recently built a house.

Best Virginia Festival of the Book attendance during wartime: Organizers say a record 17,013 attended this year's fest, up from 16,986 in 2002. Way to go, you extra 27!

Worst challenge to a Nobel Peace Prize-winner: Lynchburg residents Bob and Angela Hefner complain that Elie Wiesel's book, Night, is too graphic for seventh graders in the middle school their daughter attends.

Worst news for Monticello High thespians: Plans to build the school's auditorium are pushed back from 2006 to 2009-10.

Worst risk in surveying middle school students: They may exaggerate, as some Albemarle School Board members believe students did in the 2001 Youth Risk Behavior Survey, especially when questioned about the number of sexual partners. WINA reports that another survey is scheduled for this fall.

Best two-year anniversary: Waldo Jaquith's celebrates its March 28 birthday.

Best April Fool's joke: announces that it's changing its focus from the Dave Matthews Band to singer-songwriter John Mayer.

Worst winter flashback: Area residents awake March 30 to the first snow of spring.