This may be just about my process, but my .vimrc is an unbelievable time suck for me.
When I sit down to play with or learn a new language or framework, the first thing I do is go grab syntax highlighting files, snippets, and whatever vim plugins that can do some hand-holding and prevent me from doing stupid things. For coffeescript and clojure, this turned into a battle that caused me to initially drop vim for learning them. I tried to get an integrated REPL for both langauges to work in different ways, and in then end I discovered that they don't matter when you're getting started. Use whatever is comfortable, even if it's known to be non-optimal.
When you're learning something, don't bother with getting the tooling just right. Just jump in and do it. Forget snippets and plugins. You can mess with them when you find that you need them.