Friday, June 11, 2004

Hey, Anybody Got Any Consumer Advice?

I was working on balancing my checkbook the other day when I suddenly realized something.

I have money.

OK, not Scrooge McDuck levels of money. But, y'know, in the last year or so, I've gotten the car loan, the computer loan, and the credit card paid off, finally. I'm trying to put a fair amount into the savings account (some or all of which is also going towards paying my mother back for the trailer), but even so, my bank balance is the healthiest it's been, well... ever.

So, it occurs to me. I need to buy some toys.

I've been giving it some thought, and I'm seriously considering blowing some portion of my current financial excess on an mp3 player. A really big mp3 player. 'Cause the more I think about it, the more I really like the idea of being able to put my entire (extensive and very bulky) CD collection in one place and carry it around with me. (I'm also very strongly, if weirdly, attracted by the idea of being able to just hit "shuffle" and have my entire collection played back to me completely at random.)

I've been looking at the Zen Xtra (which, I swear, I'm not interested in just because it has the same name as one of the computers on Blake's 7!). The Amazon customer reviews are disturbingly mixed, but it looks like it has the features I want, it's got a big hard drive, and it's considerably cheaper than an iPod.

So, anyway, now I'm wondering whether any of you Gentle Readers out there has any advice on the subject. Products you'd recommend, warn against, whatever? I know absolutely zip about this stuff, really.

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