Is that all that counts today ? pretty effects and cool graphics ? I for one just want a plain old desktop with no background, just the classic theme without anything installed, no gadgets no candy just the desktop, a couple of icons there and that's about it.
You do realize, of course, that roughly 30 years ago, computer geeks were running complaining about these new-fangled GUIs and how they just wanted a good ol' command line interface without the pretty graphics. I think we're long past those arguments at this point. IOW, you are squarely in the minority. People want computer interfaces they can relate to and that feel "human" and that means pretty effects and cool graphics.
Retirement means that when someone says "Have a nice day", you actually have a shot at it.