iPod out of thin air

Filed under: Personal | 2 Comments

What’s the best way to make an iPod materialize? I have about $300 left on a “use-it-or-lose-it” book/supply scholarship that I’d love to turn into said music player.The problem is the bookstore at school is about as large as a decent sized gas station (one of the newer nice ones that you don’t need a shower after you leave). As expected, no iPods. Since it’s a school funded scholarship, you must spend on campus. Here’s the options as I see them:

1) Find someone that needs stuff at the bookstore and buy it for them (with my scholarship). Get cash from them in exchange for the goods. The problem here is that I’ll have to make a pretty decent discount to make it worth it for the other party. I might get only 90 cents on the dollar. Also, I’ll need someone with cash. Tough to find amoung a sea of newly-indebted-kids.

2) Buy books that I don’t need and sell them back. This is even a worse move than option 1 because they really rape you on buy-backs. Probably only 40 cents on the dollar.

3) Find non-book items that I can hock on eBay for a pretty good return. Stuff like bookbags, Palm’s (I’ve heard they carry a few PDA’s) and anything else that lacks a spine. this will take the most effort, and the return is hard to predict. Probably in the 75 cents on the dollar range.

4) Risk it and ask if they can order an iPod for me. I don’t think they can do anything if they catch on that I don’t want anything for school, but just want a gadget. However, to ask this question would imply I was guilty. Possibly 100 cents on the dollar. The bookstore is a mess right now (about 8,000 people in 500 square feet at any given time), so I’ll be better off waiting until it settles down to ask. I doubt anyone but the higher ups would even know.

Any other ideas? A 10 gig iPod is $269 via EDU pricing. By my count, that’s $287.83 with tax, plus shipping if I get it from Apple (most likely as it will be either Apple or school that has the EDU price). This means that if I want to literally get the iPod “for free”, I’ll have to have a full conversion of my money.

The gameplan as of now is #4, #1, #3 and then #2.Now that I think of it, this is one of the better problems I’ve ever had.

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2 Responses to “iPod out of thin air”

  1. Brian says:

    Seems like #4 would be your best option … if it’s a scholarship, it’s up to you to decide how to use it, and I can’t imagine that the bookstore nazis would care what you buy with it … or would they? Admittedly, it’s been a few years since I had to deal with campus bookstores.

  2. Izzy says:

    Most definitely #4. You might even want to talk to your school’s IT department and see if they have done business with Apple before. If so, I don’t see why you wouldn’t be able to go through the university and buy the iPod.

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