PaulK: " hope for anything more complex"

That's unduly simplistic fatalism. Its rather trivial to track QBO angular motions, the phase-angles of the rotating "balance wheel" components with respect to longitude. Balance-wheels indeed have inherent wavelengths >0.

Simply assume Taylor Frozen Field Approximation for East <=> West QBO motions, then plot them with respect to the surface (longitude).

Consider a tire spinning in place on ice. One could only assert it is motionless (zero wavelength) by disregarding its angular velocity.

I do not give up hope we may agree on such basic truth. To lose hope would be "punting".