In stream-of-consiousness order:
Perspective is a facinating, frustrating thing. It is nearly impossible to alter another person’s viewpoint by arguing them down — their perspective is their experience and their Truth. To communicate a different Truth to them, you have to give up and speak in their language, translate your understanding to their perspective. Unless, of course, they take the first step.
Gentoo is very, very sticky and I must delete the Gentoo partition from my laptop immediately. Something like the Hurd would be a lot safer as an alternative OS (since I have less chance of making it work). Even Windows XP doesn’t suck up my time like Gentoo does. That’s how they get the users. It is obviously deficient when compared with Debian or even RedHat (unless you run a lot of software compiled straight from CVS repositories). But once you’ve spent an entire weekend compiling binaries just to get Desktop in a somewhat usable state (who knew that Firefox took that long to compile!?!), you have an emotional investment.
Some relationships are best ended when you first discover that they is going to take up an abnormal amount of your time. For Gentoo and me, it’s time to cut and run.
Gnome saves the day with enforced typing breaks. Now that I’m an old man (30-plus!), I’ve got the beginnings of aches and pains. I know I should take breaks every so often to alleviate this (I’ve even got a note from my doctor), but it’s hard to remember. So, now I’ve got Gnome forcing breaks on me every 30 minutes. (Emacs’ type-break.el does something similar, but it doesn’t force the break and I use a web browser occasionally as well as the random terminal window. So an all-Emacs solution isn’t quite right for me. Shocking, I know.)