I'm sure I was supposed to post something else, but I'd like to let everyone know that I made the trip to the UPS store and sent in the D300. It cost a bit of money, but I think it was worth it.
The experience has made me acutely aware of the differences between Nikon's service and AppleCare, however. For example, to send the camera in, I had to take it to the UPS store because I'm terrified of packing it up and sending it in on my own. When my old G4 PowerBook was having problems, I called Apple up on the phone, told them what was going on, and they shipped out a box for me to send the computer in, with pre-paid return shipping, and my computer was back to me within a week.
Nikon hasn't even given me an estimate as to when they'll receive my camera into their system and get to working on it.
While I can understand that not every agency with tech support can be like AppleCare, it's just unfortunate to have to deal with anything other than AppleCare.
To be fair to the other PC vendors, I've heard Lenovo and Dell are really great at shipping out user-replaceable parts to business customers whose systems are under warranty.