My belt isn't shredding or anything, it just has lots of across-the-ribs cracking, as if the belt had dryrotted or something. The belt works fine, it just did not physically last well, and my environment is not a harsh one or anything, so it'* hard to blame the weather here. I don't really care if it still works or not, it has lots of cracks in the ribs and I'm going to replace it with a nice new Gatorback belt.
I got my new Gatorback belt today at AutoZone, it was $31.00. For what it'* worth, there are various belt routing diagrams on it, and two of them are marked "GM 3.8L" and one of the two is correct for my car. Not that I needed it or anything, but still, I'm able to confirm that one of the belt routing diagrams on the package is, in fact, correct.
97 SE, teflon wiper blades, Dunlop Sport A-2 tires, Leather steering wheel cover, Pioneer DEH-P480MP mp3 CDRW head unit, Pioneer 12-disc changer, iPod hookup, Boston Acoustic 3 way 6x9'*, Boston acoustic separates in door pods, Alpine 4 channel amp in trunk. Magnaflow dual outlet muffler and Ractive stainless tips. Autozone rice pipe and K&N 4750 intake kit. Clear corner lights. Energy Suspension end links.