On the Drizzle-discuss mailing list, Baron just pointed out that MySQL has a means to validate its config file (/etc/my.cnf), similar to "apachectl configtest".
mysqld --help --verbose
Somehow, I never knew that...
Oh, and yes, this means I am following Drizzle. In fact, I'm trying to devote at least a few hours each day to reading the source and finding things to fix. In a weird way, it feels good to be writing C++ again!