The Ways and Mannerisms of the Gadget Whore

Hello, children. To-day, we will speak of the magical creature we see and know as the "gadget whore." Since gadget whorism is largely a male affair, as evidenced by numerous comparisons to pissing contests and penis envy, we will refer to the whores in this write-up as "he" for simplicity's sake.

Disclaimer: The following node is US-centric.

Mobile Telephony

First and foremost, the possession of a mobile phone is of great importance to the gadget whore. Prior to acquiring his first phone, the gadget whore consults with his circle of friends (or, in the absence of friends, a sufficiently active message board) to determine which phone best meets his needs. The gadget whore then swears undying allegiance to the brand of phone he purchases, and familiarizes himself with all of the shortcomings of other brands on the market. For example, if his first phone were a Nokia 8290, he would never in his wildest dreams consider buying a Motorola or Ericsson phone.

The gadget whore must keep his phone for no more than nine months, at which point he exchanges it for the newest model of his chosen manufacturer. Cost is not a priority; a mobile phone is a fashion accessory to the gadget whore, so appearance is the only thing that matters. All accessories must also be re-purchased at this time. Despite numerous scientific inquiries, no conclusion has been reached regarding where old mobile phones go. To avoid the shame of placing a classified ad with all of the commoners, it is believed that the gadget whore merely discards his old phone.

It is imperative that the gadget whore's phone be distinctive from the other thousands of phones on the market. As a result, the gadget whore often purchases customized faceplates and other accessories to set his phone apart. He customizes the alpha tag. He has replaced the ring tone with a popular melody of his choice, often at an additional expense. Although the phone is often placed in the gadget whore's pocket or belt holster, he shuns use of the vibrate setting. By playing a melody loudly, the gadget whore is satisfied in knowing that the rest of the world is aware of his gadget whoring.

The American gadget whore reads Infosync and complains incessantly about how Europe and Asia always get better mobile phone coverage than the United States, and also have cooler phones sooner.

Portable Audio

The gadget whore does not carry a portable CD or (shudder) cassette player. Some poorer gadget whores may have an MP3 CD Player, but this too is highly frowned upon. The standard of choice is the Minidisc. The advantages of MDs over CDs are simple: MDs are smaller, more impact-resistant, and can hold a great deal of music at higher compression settings. However, the gadget whore is drawn to one feature of MD players in particular: the remote control. Most players have a small remote about the size of a AAA cell battery which is attached to the headphone cord. This enables the gadget whore to change tracks or view information about the current track without reaching into his pocket or bag for the player itself. Furthermore, the gadget whore will often clip the remote to a strap of his backpack so that he can more immediately access it. The remote also has the effect of broadcasting to the world, "Hey! I'm listening to Around the World by ATB!"

Portable MP3 players are not recommended for the gadget whore: they are too mass-market and not stylish or expensive enough. Most MP3 players do not have the miniature remote control, and are shunned by gadget whores for this reason as well.

Portable Gaming

Do not go up to a gadget whore beaming about your new Game Boy Advance. He owned one the minute they came out in Japan, and grew tired of it very quickly. Instead, he will show off his Neo-Geo Pocket Color or WonderSwan, which he also purchased after their respective introductions in Japan. He will show you how he owns all seven games produced for these two consoles, and how the graphics and gameplay are infinitely superior to your stupid conformist toy. When he was a child, his parents bought him a TurboExpress, a Lynx, and a Game Gear not long after they came out; he still has them in a box in the attic marked "junk."

Personal Digital Assistants (PDA's)

Gadget whores swear allegiance to either Windows CE or Palm OS. Occasionally, you will find a Psion gadget whore who raves about the EPOC32 operating system, or the occasional Newton gadget whore who complains about how his $1,000 machine that weighs two pounds was not accepted by the general public. If the gadget whore is devoted to a currently-supported operating system, he must always have the most recent device which supports his choice. For Windows CE, this would likely be the latest and greatest iPaq handheld; for the Palm OS devotee, it would be the Palm m505 or the Sony Clie PEG-N710C. Note that the Clie has a remote control for use with the built-in MP3 player, and is the most expensive Palm OS handheld currently sold. The iPaq is more expensive at the high-end.

As with mobile phones, the gadget whore feels inclined to show off his PDA as much as possible. The Windows CE user will happily play a movie file using the onboard Windows Media Player for Pocket PC, or will demonstrate many of the other whizbang features that he never actually uses for any productive purpose. The Palm OS user will show off whatever game or utility program he just downloaded, and complain about how Windows CE is full of whizbang features that nobody ever actually uses for any productive purpose. Psion and Newton holders will note that their devices had all of the functionality of Palm OS and Windows CE before either of these platforms was even created.

General

The gadget whore must always assert his presence on the cutting-edge of technology, no matter what the expense. He must assert the validity of his purchase decisions on Internet forums, and must always be on top of the newest products about to enter the marketplace. When a co-worker starts talking about some new gadget that he just bought, the gadget freak must immediately counter that (1) the product that the co-worker bought is garbage, (2) the gadget freak already owns a better model, and (3) that the co-worker should have consulted with him before flushing his money down the toilet like that.


If I had the money, I would be a gadget whore too.

Log in or registerto write something here or to contact authors.