"I find it bizarre that someone would go to the trouble of eating in shifts and work up 3 or 4 different boils, instead of just getting all the cooking done in one swoop and eating together at the same time."
Hmmm, how could that be bizarre on a site dedicated to going lighter? I find it more bizarre that folks will skimp on bag warmth, fuel weight, food carried or any other of strange things done on this site to go lighter. But yeah, we all approach things from a different perspective. Most folks I hike with like to eat really early...5pm-ish, and we like to eat later and we like different foods, so sharing a cook system makes perfectly good sense. If you're always in a hurry to cook a meal and get it down then carrying your own cook system is obviously more convenient.
"Even in the mountains, where storms can come on suddenly and with force, if one is watching for the signs of approaching weather, there is no reason to get caught unawares."
As for wet tents, I guess that we're just unlucky where we live. More often than not you can't just stop everything and pitch your tent. Trips are often planned to end up at a spot that's flat enough to accommodate a tent, and that spot may still be many hours away. The magnificent scenery here comes with a high price, weather-wise. If we stayed home every time there was rain forecast, we would never get out of the house. And that's not counting the times the*forecast* is good, but just plain wrong. Setting up a tent in gale force torrential rain is just a fact of life sometimes. Not pleasant even with a single pitch double tent, but having to pitch the inner first in these conditions just equals more wet misery than necessary (and lack of tent strength is a major concern when a southerly gale comes off the Antarctic).
Anyway, I get the impression that a lot of members here are really mostly 'soloists'. Sharing gear weight is so much more efficient that it should be mandatory for any serious UL hiker to pair up with someone else ;) JK. Heck, we even share a toothbrush!