I worked with my laptop (sans Firefox) for a few hours later today and all worked well. Notable about earlier crash: Firefox initial screen was garbled. Maybe ffox had something to do with the earlier crash. I'll retry tomorrow.
Imagine my surprise and elation when I updated the kernel and got
high-performance, high-res gfx on my Thinkpad! It's been a long time
coming, and I'm thrilled.
That said, running X (w/ dwm window manager) froze my laptop entirely
after a few minutes. I couldn't get into the kernel debugger to get
any clues about what had happened; it was locked up tight.
If there's anything else I can to do increase logging or get
introspection, I'm happy to supply info, test builds etc. to get this