Five years ago, I bought one of the first iPods. It had what seemed at the time a massive five gig hard drive and was, in retrospect, somewhat smaller than a brick. Okay, not that bad, but compared to the newer, sleeker models, it was pretty chunky.

Over the next few years I watched enviously as subsequent models came out with 10 and 20 gig HDs, each seemingly slimmer than the last. When I did finally upgrade, it was a week or two before the video iPod came out. My timing is often good that way.

Well, I upgraded again this week, to the video version (via the Wish List, courtesy of an incredibly generous reader, who I’ve already thanked privately, but let me express my gratitude here once again). This one has 80 gigs, holds my entire music library and has plenty of space left over for movies and tv shows. I haven’t put this to the test yet but I think I could probably load my multimedia dog-and-pony show onto it and not even have to take a laptop on the road with me, if I wanted to travel light.

My point? I think the iPhone will be a nifty little device, in about two years. Apple early adapters — and I’ve been one more than once — always end up being played for schmucks, as Apple rushes something out and then puts a refined, much better model on the market a year later. I’ll admit, this thing inspires gadget lust in me, but with 4 to 8 gigs and Cingular-only service, I think I’ll probably wait awhile.

(…adding: unless Apple wants to send me one to “review”, of course …)