I do fine with computers but audio devices flummox me. I can never find the cord I need to sync and charge my iPod and so it spends most of its life with a dead battery in the bottom of my purse. I’ve tried checking out audiobooks from the library to put onto my iPod but you have to install that Overdrive software and who can be bothered to fiddle around with all that? I just want something that will work right away, not something I have to build from the ground up. Hence my love of Playaways, those self-contained MP3 gadgets you get from the library with the audiobook already installed. Just stick in a battery, plug in your headphones and go.
Well yes, until you get a defective one like I have now. I’m part way through The Lacuna and the Playaway has croaked. I’ve ordered up the CDs from the library, but that brings me to the other problem with the Playaways – navigation. Where the heck am I in this book? All I have is a tiny screen that says 3-8 on it (and I don’t even have that any more now that the device is dead). What does that mean? What page is that? I feel disoriented not knowing how far I’ve read. How am I going to figure out which disc I should start with?
I know I could buy this audiobook from iTunes or rent it from Audible.com but both those routes involve money and hardware. I could download it to my Kindle (also $$), which has so far been a more reliable and accessible device than my iPod. But what I think I am going to do is just get the damn hardback book from the library. Nothing to set up. No cords to wrangle. No batteries to run down. Figuring out where I am should be a cinch. How about that?