I hope you enjoy your upgrade. Having a solid Unix/Linux background really helps to appreciate the Mac's advantages. (I always have at least three Terminal windows open, because I'm too lazy to use the Finder for most things. ;^)
I have to say, though, that I find your complaints about the cost to be a little misleading. Why waste your money on an LCD and Microsoft Office when you have perfectly good CRTs and existing Windows systems (presumably with Office) around?
And is .Mac really a necessity? I've been using Macs for close to twenty years now, and have never felt the need/desire to pay for .Mac.