I don't know why I think this is a good idea, but I'm learning to play ukulele. My Tagalog tutor had a cheap one lying around that she wasn't playing, and she let me have it so I could see if I liked it before spending dough on one of my own. (A decent starter uke is about $50-80 bones; this one is probably in the $20 range.)
Actually, this was inspired by the poetry slam I went to the other night. They busted out a uke for one of the pieces and I jotted down in my notebook, "get a ukulele" -- a note I rediscovered the next day in class when I was talking about deciding whether to lobby for a creative performance as my dissertation project (the uke would be put to use in the performance). So I went home Friday and spent the rest of the night learning all I could about the ukulele and how difficult it would be to get started. Turns out it's not too bad. After an hour or so of tuning and tinkering around, I know four chords (though I can't quite change between them yet), and I'm getting the hang of strumming. I can already see the cheapness of the one I have, though. The tuning thingies (I could probably look this up, but I want to get this posted quickly) are made of plastic and don't stay in place when I tune. That's definitely a problem. Nevertheless, I think I'll see how I'm doing in another couple weeks before I decide if investing in an entry-level uke is wise.
But let me tell you, I've already got my eye on this little number:
Lanikai LU-21C Concert Ukulele
Part #: 302530
Your Price: $79.00
Inventory Status: Available
And if I go through with this, it will take every fiber of my being not to get one of these (I think you know why):