Thank you. Thank you to everyone who was brave enough to tell me to frog it. And thank you to everyone who said nice things (both on the pro- and anti-frog side). And thanks especially for coming out of the woodwork at a moment's notice to weigh in so I didn't have to make this decision all by my lonesome. (Although yes, those of you who basically said, "come on, you know what you have to do" were right; sometimes, though, one needs the backing of a few friends to get through something like this - better than a bottle of tequila, right? Look ma, no hangover!)
The semi-sweater from the pictures yesterday is now a bunch of little balls of yarn. It never ceases to amaze me how (relatively) quickly something that took so long to put together can come apart. (By "quickly", I mean an hour of ripping. It went faster once I remembered that I'd seamed the sides. Oops.) Brandy was not required for marination - I managed the whole process on the strength of a single glass of wine.
I think Mary Lou put it best when she said that, from the pictures, it looks like this thing should be a sweater with a shrug-like opening, rather than an actual shrug. And a sweater with a shrug-like opening is what I wanted - frankly, I have tried the shrug thing, and it does not suit.
I not only ripped last night, but I also pulled up my big girl panties and cast on again and finished the first two rows before going to bed. This is part of my general strategy to ensure that I don't fall prey to, for example, second sock syndrome - the (re)starting of a project is somehow much more daunting to me than the continuing of it. That isn't to say that I am not distracted by my share of shiny objects that lure me from the path of project completion, but at least this way it's started and in the bag and ready to go. Updates will be posted as they are warranted.
Meanwhile, have a glass of wine (or single-malt, your call) on me, and may all of your projects go more smoothly than this one has.