Well I stumbled across something that was by mere chance and it has helped me to be able to do some really cool stuff with Photoshop. I actually feel like I know what I am doing and I can do some really neat tricks now that I know this.
So what is the big secret? It's called a mask and it basically a new layer that you can color on like your 5 year old colors and still get really cool results! When combined with the High Pass Filter and Overlay blending mode (yeah, I didn't know what the hell that was for either) you can create sharpening results that will make you forget that stupidly confusing unsharpen mask.
I learned this really cool trick in this short little video I discovered when playing with podcasts on iTunes after reading Scott Kelby's book.
If you watch this video, towards the middle there will be a cool demo that talks about making the eyes on a baby pop more (although this kids eyes are incredible so you really don't need it). Take a look here and learn some really cool new tricks:
Warning, these guys may be killer Photoshop users, but they are total geeks so plan to groan many times at their lame attempts at being funny.