My new roommate John will be out of town for at least part of December if not all of it and he has generously offered his monitor while he's gone. So I'll hook up his monitor to my computer today to find out if it's the monitor or the video card that went bad. I'd be surprised if it was the monitor. It's Sony, about 3 years old, and my experience with Sonys is that they last forever.
If hooking his monitor to my computer works I'll have computer access for a while and I'll post more. If not, I'll have to head over to the library once a day to check my e-mail. And I have SOOOOOOO much to post! I won't be able to read your posts for a while. :( I'm off now to brace myself for more internet withdrawals.