in reply to
Assume that Perl has what you need
This is similar to discussions I've heard in the Smalltalk world about the difficulty of finding things in a large class library.
With Perl, of course, even if the language itself doesn't provide something (and it goes out of its way to provide lots of stuff that other languages don't), chances are good that CPAN will provide it.
So programming well in Perl (or Smalltalk) depends on your ability to find the already-invented wheel. Or to remember where you last saw it.
I wonder how this shift in skills maps to the typical programmer personality. On the one hand, we're already good at remembering bits of disconnected trivia. On the other, we may not have lots of desire to do the library work.