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XOR on the transparent glassPane, XOR Alternative, JScrollPane Thumbs

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I want to do something similar to 'rubber band' animation (using potentially many colors) on a panel that has many things drawn on it (again many colors). When I draw/erase these using XOR drawing mode I can not control the color satisfactorily because I have a multi-colored background. Clearing and redrawing is just too ooogly.
I thought that doing the XOR drawing on the glassPane would be a good way to go but it's not working out for me.
My questions...
1) When the glassPane is setOpaque(false) what is the color of the (disabled ?) getBackground() ? Can you XOR on a transparent glassPane ? How ?
2) If I decide to just clear the glassPane and rewrite, how should I best accomplish that. I tried .clearRect but it drew Gray, over borders and other controls, etc. (even though I had specified opaque==false).
3) Any better way to do this kind of 'painting animation' than what I'm thinking of ?
Also, and I apologize for these two disparate subjects in advance, I was bejiggered all weekend trying to get a JScrollPane to show me the dadgummed thumbs. I have extended JFrame, created a JPanel (2000,2000) and used it to instanciate a JScrollPane. I have the hole thing working, column and row viewports and active corners...but I simply can not get the JScrollPane to think it needs the scrollbars (in fact, they disappear if I don't specify ALWAYS).
Thanks very, very much in advance.
Best Regards,
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