I consider myself a Linux noob, as I have only had a year experience with a distribution I have found satisfactory. I have had experience with it since 1998, but as an average non-enthusiastic user I did not use it regularly until this past year.
I bought a Dell9 with Ubuntu, and I have had the most minimal amount of problems with it of all distributions (having used Suse, Mandriva/Mandrake, Fedora, Redhat, and Ubuntu). It does have its occasional issue, but nothing that requires much terminal use.
So how does the "average user" feel about linux? Not too good. As far as ease of use for someone with little experience, I have yet to find a distribution that compare even closely to OS X or Windows. It's getting there, but it still has a long way to go.