"What you really want", I said with the voice of one imparting great wisdom, "is a convertable Tablet PC where you can twiddle the screen round to get the tablety writing goodness but also make it into a proper notebook so you can actually use it to get things done. And the best of these..." I continued, building nicely to a climax "... is the Toshiba Portege M200". Max listened, took notes and then went out and bought one.
This morning the phone went. It was Max. He was not happy. To say he was displeased with his M200 would be an understatement of gargantuan proportions for which no suitable analogy has presented itself yet. Apparently nothing works properly with the device. Nothing. Devices come and go like ships in the night. Programs crash for no reason. The docking station (a hugely impressive edifice of plastic, metal and thick cable) does not dock properly. If his office was on a higher level I really think he would have thrown it out of the window. And it was all my fault.
Hmmm. The funny thing is that I've been saving my reach out pennies to get myself just such a device. So I bought it off him. In the face of tales of woe, a screen backdrop of a lemon on the device and streams of invective about it which would make a stoker blush. I've got all the bits. Thing is fully loaded and just like new. Which it very nearly is.
There is nothing like getting a new computer to set you off on a stream of displacement activity of the highest order - although I did write some exam questions whilst I re-imaged the machine from the back up DVD. It is OK so far, and Max is very happy 'cos he can now go out and buy something made by Sony.
I wonder if he will ever ask my advice again.