OK, so the installation instructions for WordPress appear to be too skimpy in one important area: How to set up a database. The documentation assumes that the blogger is already familiar with how (and why) a database should be configured to support database-driven blogs, so there is not even a brief outline of what steps one should take to create the needed MySQL database.
This really shouldn’t be that hard, but the Dreamhost control panel doesn’t make it as simple as it could be. The Add New Database link fails with a nonsensical error, but it could simply be due to not following the proper order. On the chance that I have to create another hostname before I can add another database, I have done so. Since it may take an hour (or much longer) to complete, it’s time to go out for lunch and start planning the structure of this site over a beer.