Friday, March 11, 2005

All Around the World

To iPod or not to iPod - that is the question.

I don't own an iPod. Blasphemy! you cry out... Well, it's true. I don't own one. I never had a discman either, but I did have a walkman until about 3 years ago. I used to DJ on a radio station and made many tapes over the years of my shows and could listen to them on my walkman while I was on the bus to or from work, or while I was walking the couple miles home from work if I decided to do that.

For Christmas this year, my father gave me a gift certificate towards a large electronics purchase of my choice. "I thought maybe you'd want an iPod, " he said. My dad is kind of a gadgety guy, and is very computer savvy. So is my brother, who got an iPod from his girlfriend and immediately filled it with a hundred million songs, or however many it takes before it gets maxed out. So I asked my brother, "When do you use it?" "Well, on the plane, or at work, or I just hook it up to my computer when I'm at home." Thing is, my brother works with computers - he's on them all the frikkin' time. And he travels more than I do, and takes public transportation in the city where he lives (San Francisco). I know people all over the planet have iPods and love them.

Basically, I'm trying to envision when I would actually use the damn thing. I don't work out, so I wouldn't use it in the gym. My drive to work is about 40 minutes, so I usually pop in a CD and listen to it and that's about it. At work, I listen to online radio stations like KALX, KEXP, WOXY or Little Radio. When I'm at home, I listen to my records or CDs.

A lot of my friends who have them are over them already. It feels kind of like a fad to me, actually. I noticed that one friend of mine had his iPod sitting on a table in his office for months. "Don't you use your iPod anymore?" "Nah, it exploded or something." "Well, can you get it fixed?" "I don't care about it that much." Another friend had incorporated the iPod into his DJing; imagine having 10,000 songs at your fingertips as well as whatever records and CDs you carried? I thought that seemed pretty cool. But he gave that up because the sound wasn't right, and it didn't work so well after all - at least for him. I've seen Jason Falkner do a couple shows backed by an iPod - he recorded all the other parts ahead of time and then played with himself. At one show, the iPod skipped or some other malfunction, and he quipped, "Damn band!"

So I think I'll use this gift certificate to get a compnonet piece for my stereo that allows me to burn my records & tapes to CD. I think I could also do this if I tricked out my computer, and neither method seems very forgiving (like cassettes are), but in my case - it seems most practical.

Or maybe I could just do like this guy (Indian Spiritual Guru, His Holiness Sri Ganapati Sachchidananda Swamiji, Mysore, India) and use my iPod to power my spiritual healing.