Someone should contact a publisher
and write a book "The developers Guide to Vanilla from the ground up"
maybe the book could walk through step by step completing and developing a theme. with the end result a cool theme
the same with a cool plugin.
just like the wordpress guys.
between hgtonight shadowdare businessdad and x00 and r_j (as well as vanilla staff themselves) writing chapters and understanding MVC, oop, etc.
I'd be willing to write a small part of the troubleshooting chapter
vrijvlinder could do illustrations.
I bet it would be a cool book.
I may not provide the completed solution you might desire, but I do try to provide honest suggestions to help you solve your issue.