We drove back to HD to ask about this (and take the aforementioned photo with us) and to buy a circular saw to cut the new countertop. HD dude was still there (and still really helpful) and told us not to worry - it was okay to have two shut-off valves. We have been really conscientious doing this whole thing so we would never make a future owner of the Bangor Foursquare say the same words we have had to say over and over again: "What the hell did they do this for?" But we realized this was a moment where we would have to go back on our vow.
So we started cutting the pipes with that handy little pipe cutter and then found we couldn't get the compression fitting to go on all the way. As Scooby would say, "Ruh roh." While we pondered this new obstacle, we started cutting the first piece of countertop with Thom's new circular saw (after saying a prayer and crossing myself several times, I left the room to allow Thom to do the actual cutting). Here's what the first piece looks like - pretty schnazzy, eh?
After that, I checked out the compression fitting issue and realized we had turned the pipe cutter the wrong way when we made the cut, which made it impossible to get the new fitting on. I re-cut with it facing the correct way, we tested it out, and voila! We have two shut-off valves. Hooray for shoddy work!
After cutting the next little piece of the cabinet we realized that with our existing Lazy Susan (no relation) corner cabinet, there is no way to access the inside of the cabinet in order to attach the countertop to the cabinet (they hadn't done this with the formica either - we found it was just sitting on top of it). This new conundrum resulted in several snarky debates between us so we decided to call it a day. We're off to the National Folk Festival again for the rest of the night - I'm gonna get me one of them there corn dogs and ponder the new challenges that await us tomorrow. Perhaps, with luck, we'll have a sink back in by 2010.