Apparently, USAirways sent San Francisco a smaller airplane than they'd sold my flight's seats for. So they were craving volunteers.
I volunteered to be inconvenienced. There was no question about "well, we'll see if we need you"; I was processed right away by a harried woman who was clearly grateful for my offer.
So I'm scheduled to be on the redeye now. For my pains, I was given a voucher for a round-trip ticket anywhere this year, and the grateful attendant bumped me up to first class with an explicit "you helped me, so I'll help you." I'm glad of this--I think that first class will make the redeye much more comfortable.
So the next order of business became to make myself comfortable in the airport. And the attendant gave me some hints there too. I'm currently sitting in a nearly empty part of the terminal that has the major virtue that I'm near a power outlet where I've plugged in the laptop. And I've found that from here, I can connect to a T-mobile wireless network at $9.99 for up to 24 hours.
I may be able to get a lot of debugging done today.