Karma has bitten me on the ass. In the past, I've often laughed when I heard stories involving unfortunate but avoidable notebook computer accidents! I mean, who spills coffee on a computer?
And the answer to that question would be, me! Sitting outside on the patio, I quite stupidly jostled the table, sloshing about a third of a cup of coffee over my MacBook. I managed to flip it quite quickly, getting rid of most of the mess immediately, powered down the machine and wiped it down, then used an air blower to concentrate the spill into a single corner of the casing.
Once that was picked up, I opened the case to see if any great amount of liquid had made it inside. A little bit had collected in the corner toward which I had directed the spill, so after wiping that down, I left the case open to air dry.
A couple days of drying and I decided to turn it on and cross my fingers. Everything turned on as it should and the only issue are a couple of somewhat sticky/stiff keys (the arrows and the space bar) so I'm pretty confident that no permanent harm was done! I've read a lot of posts online about the corrosive nature of coffee, but I think the greatest danger comes from the possibility of a short on the logic board, as the battery in a MacBook is not exactly easy to remove. It has been my experience, with numerous mobile phones and an assortment of other electronic devices that removing the source of power drastically reduces the chances of permanent damage.
Damn that karma!