March 10, 2009: Oooh! No Shiny!

I’ve come to the conclusion I really like shiny new toys. It’s the only explanation I have for my ongoing attraction to netbooks and cell phones/smart phones. With my head I know neither thing is really what I’ll want or something that I’ll use enough to justify spending the money. However, with my magpie heart, I linger over websites and advertising flyers, thinking, “It’s only X dollars…”

The thing that keeps me from actually buying anything is imagination. I try to imagine actually using the smart phone or the netbook. Will it give me what I think it will? Or am I being driven by boredom and a hunger for novelty?

So far, it’s pretty clear that it’s the desire for a new toy. Whenever I think of a smart phone, it seems like it’s only slightly more convenient (for my purposes) than an ordinary cell phone. If an ordinary cell phone works to fulfill my needs and I have one that works well, why get a new one before I truly have to? As for a netbook, if I get one, I’ll have to use it instead of my existing laptop. Otherwise, keeping things synched is going to be a pain in the neck. I don’t want to replace my existing laptop, which I love (and is paid for), and I can’t bring myself to spend roughly $400 for something that’s a pain in the neck.

The only argument in favor of a netbook is that it would let me be more productive on the bus…but that’s not really true. If I have room to spread out, I have my Alphasmart (also paid for) and paper and pen. If I don’t have room to spread out, it doesn’t matter what my tools are; I don’t have room to use them.

I know all this, yet I still lust. I’m not rational, I never have been. The only real difference these days is that I know and accept it.

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