I'm not an Apple fan boy. Really!

I'm notoriously hard on stuff.

As an example, last night I pulled into my driveway, hit a rock, and suffered the rare sidewall blowout. In my driveway. I won't even mention the time I ripped the door off my car. If something can be broken, I'll figure out a way to do it.

I busted my last top-of-the-line Dell laptop in a way that left Dell's repair department scratching their heads and sending $1200 repair bills our way. I managed to break the aluminum case of a Latitude e6500 (with a #2 marketing attribute of being durable). I replaced it with a closeout Apple MacBook Pro 17" which I purchased last April at BestBuy.

It is the best computer I've ever owned, but I broke it anyway -- in multiple strange ways. I broke the power cord. I broke the display. I broke the touch pad. I bent the case. In 6 months I destroyed the thing. I sweated trying to figure out a way to expense the second laptop I'd had obliterated in one year. In desperation I tried Apple's phone service.

I was beyond my phone service warranty, but they agreed to help anyway. I sent Apple a PDF of the receipt, and they FedEx'd a box over the next day. I sat on it for a few weeks, not wanting to go without a laptop, even in its sorry state of disrepair. I eventually sent it in the Wednesday before the Thanksgiving holiday assuming I wouldn't need it for a few days, but prepared to go without for a couple weeks. I was ready for a repair bill with a $1500 price tag, but much to my surprise, after Apple sent me a confirmation that they had received my Mac Book, by the time I clicked the progress link, the status had been updated to "repaired" -- on the Wednesday night before Thanksgiving.

To whomever in Memphis fixed my laptop in the middle of night on the day before Thanksgiving, you get my thanks! The amazing part is I got the laptop back on Saturday -- completely overhauled -- new monitor, new upper part of the case, new keyboard, new touch pad, new lower part of the case, new air port (didn't know it was bad) -- I didn't recognize it. But when I booted it, all was there, just as I left it -- my Windows partition and all.

After years of being a Dell corporate customer, I'm impressed. And I'm not easily impressed.

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