When you're arranging portlets on your pages, have you ever wondered, where you'll be able to drop them? Especially when you use a more complex layout, like the 1-2-1-columns and don't have a lot of content on the page, it's sometimes not obvious what your options are. The good news is that Liferay comes well prepared for your intent - for some reason it just doesn't make full use of it.
This is what it looks like to have the 1-2-1-column layout with only one portlet in the first column, dragging a second portlet around the page. I'm using the classic theme for this screenshot (click for full size):
If you just chose the 1-2-1-column layout, you probably have some expectation where you can drop your portlet. If you just happen to work on a page and don't feel like checking which layout-template is currently active, wouldn't you rather like to see an indicator of the available columns, like this?
As you might have heard that Liferay 6.2 will be using twitter bootstrap (e.g. reported here), a lot on the UI side will change, so I decided to publish this workaround here instead of pushing LPS-33636