Installed MATE, bliss ensued
A couple of crashes of GNOME shell, including yesterday stealing my keyboard focus and refusing to let it have me back, and then the mouse not working for a while … Together with the shell just generally driving me nuts, was enough to type “installing mate on ubuntu” into google.
At least this is sort of GNOME, so I don’t feel like a “traitor to the cause.” I do like one feature of gnome-shell and that’s the window stacking if you press it against the sides, so I can have two side by side windows easily. On the other hand, I have multiple desktops on my second monitor now. Yay! It feels good to be back in saner and less-flashy times.