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I prefer Xubuntu, but not everybody likes the same things. For my Xubuntu install I remove the bottom 'dock' and drag the top bar down to the bottom.
I also remove a lot of the plug-ins for the task bar until I'm left with a clock only. Then I add Weather Update, Network Monitor and a Quick Launch.
I remove Pidgin and install Kopete for Webcam support. Put gThumb as the default image viewer and use smplayer instead of parole. Add Audacious for music and k3b for burning, Sylpheed for EMail; gedit and a few minor other things like PCSX, GFCE and ZSNES.
I'm good to go.