1) don't have more than one socket extension. one of those little 4-5" ones might be okay, but as i figured out, that plus a bigger 10-12" one will do a world of good.
2) don't have a spark plug socket that fits. it's supposed to be a 16mm extra-long socket, but i didn't have any - and neither did walmart. fortunately, a 5/8 inch extra-long one fits just fine.
3) break a 12mm socket whilst trying to unscrew stuff. don't do this.
4) have to make multiple trips to department stores to get the supplies you need. if i had read ahead and gotten all the sockets and other hardware bits ahead of time, things would have gone much more smoothly.
given that i now know all these things and have acquired the necessary tools, next time it shouldn't take me longer than an hour. i followed shiv's instructions (www.vishnutuning.com), and they were right on. it was just wrangling with the hoses and sockets and nuts and trying to reach all those things tucked away where god never meant for man to see that took so long.