The irony of the last post was, after all the work getting fbpanel to behave the way I wanted, and still having slight misgivings about the need for an icon with the menu option, I saw that PerlPanel was added to AUR.
I gave it a shot today and it’s much more friendly than fbpanel is. It has built-in configuration menus and a lot of catchy gizmos, like a panel pet that’s fun to play with. I didn’t play with it long enough to find all the fun stuff, but it’s easy enough to install and compile with yaourt. If I decide this bizarre infatuation with mockup desktops, I might try to mess with it a little more.
I should note that libwnck is needed to compile it, although it didn’t get pulled in as a dependency. So make sure you have that installed before you start.