Kosta Cherry wrote: And Managed C++ is by no means "fun"
Depends on your definition of fun. MC is obsolete btw, have you tried C++/CLI? I find C++/CLI very enjoyable with the added satisfaction that I can mix native c++ code like no other managed environment would let me do. For a good amount of time, I struggled to find a decent standardized c++ framework for web applications and even though there were some I didnt like any (just like you) and finally the idea of using C++/CLI to utilize the powerfull .NET framework stuck. Its fun for me because with just a few lines of code I get to expose my native c++ functionality as WCF webservices and from the same executable. It is marketable because you get to learn new .NET stuff as well as the intricacies of mixing with native. Mastering WPF, even though with C++/CLI, will be profitable because WPF is going to stay especially with Metro apps coming out in upcoming Windows8 and the possibilities they open up for Windows App Store are huge.
A downside however is that mono still does not support C++/CLI therefore its not portable yet.