- Go to Tools, Options, Advanced, Tabbed Browsing -> Uncheck "Hide the tab bar when only one website is open"
- Go to Tools, Options, Advanced, Tabbed Browsing -> Uncheck "Select new tabs opened from links"
- Double click on the tab bar -> Open a new blank tab
- Middle click on an open tab -> Close tab
- Middle click on any link -> Open link in new tab in background
If you don't have a scroll mouse, I suggest you get one. If you can't, then Ctrl-clicking does the same thing as middle clicking.
These seem like simple tips but they aren't very prominent in the documentation.