Bouncing dock. Missing dock icons. Question mark icons in the dock. Can't reset dock preferences. Can't place icon in the dock, dock hides and won't come back. Can't drag items to trash before dock hides again and won't reappear until item is released. It's kind of a Hide & Seek behavior on the desktop.
I was beginning to think that my machine had some kind of new Dock Hide & Seek virus. The Dock would launch, and be up for about 3 seconds, then hide. I could not make it appear, it would come back up on it's own, stay up for about 3 seconds and drop again.
I tried to reset in preferences. I tried to toss my dock preference files and restart, but the dock would launch again before I could restart so I was tossing pref files as fast as the dock could make them. I switched to my admin user and the dock was stable and showing no signs of psychosis so I knew it had to be some conflict in my user account. I headed to the Logs file, Console, and Crash Report. Ah Ha! Dock crash report. I opened the Dock crash report and just sat and watched as line after line was being written as the Dock launched and crashed every few seconds. I looked further through the logs and found mention of Sticky Windows. I think the first crash today was after launch of Sticky Windows. I loaded that about a week ago, but I haven't been using the Pismo much over the holidays so it didn't seem so recent. I noticed this behavior yesterday, but didn't have time to track it down.
I went to preferences and turned off Sticky Windows, reset my Dock prefs, and no my dock is back to normal. I think that was a pretty good bit of troubleshooting. So, I now feel a little better about my earlier no-so-nerdy tech support call.