Despite my whining in the last post I got things mostly setup the way I wanted. Switched out to starting with simpler, shorter template, and made all my changes offline in vi. Only took another iteration or two to actually get everything working.
It's not quite perfect, but it's close. Let's say 85%. Good enough that I'm going to use it until we get closer to, say... 95%. Need to make sure it isn't actually hard to read or something else equally dysfunctional.
Despite my artistic handicap, I even managed to come up with a logo and matching favicon. Go me!