>Piper it doens't count if you leave your BF in the dust because he's carrying all your gear. ;) Just kidding.
I know you say you are kidding, but I bet you think there is a grain of truth there. The fact is, now that we have such light gear, often I carry the tent if we have one to share. Except for the tent, we go with our own full set of gear, no sharing of anything else. Sometimes we bring our own separate shelters, too. We did that this weekend.
I'm not sure why you think most of us are "every day UL guys" who are like some kind of joe six-pack, just out there tinkering around with some light gear but not really willing or able to put in big miles. I don't find that to be the case among the people I know. Most of them do go long distances. I don't think I know of any regular non-lightweight backpacker who thinks that an 8-10 mile day is too short. But of the UL backpackers I know, most of them think a sub-15 mile day is too short.
Of the people I know who go ultralight, they do it expressly so that they can do the following things:
1) go farther in less time
2) get to places they never could get to before
3) play with gear, be gram weenies, invent new things, play with new technologies
4) have the flexibility to add extra mileage, change the route, do some exploring
5) do more with less
The last one is sort of hard to explain, but you touched in it when you said it comes to to the "stuff" you want to bring with you.
Many of us have learned by leaving "stuff" home that it isn't about the stuff you bring at all. The less stuff you need, the closer you are to the nature you came out to experience. The less your trip is focused on stuff, the sharper the experience feels. It's about your skill, about feeling at home in the wilderness, about shedding not just the weight but the insecurities. When you reach the point where you're no longer packing your insecurities, you experience a special kind of freedom that has to be experienced to be understood.
Finally, I like going UL so I can bring luxuries, too. I brought a cup last time. I can hear you laughing. But since I don't need a cup, having it this time brought me great joy. I also brought an extra pair of shoes. I'm choosy about my luxuries. They have to enhance the experience, not take away from it.