According to Frederick Seidel, if I didn't have an iPad, I'd be Easy Rider. In his article in today's Times, Seidel explains that, in his day, young men dreamt of riding off on an Italian import--whether a brand new Ducati sport bike or Sophia Loren mattered little. Now, however, the era of the shiny handheld object may spell an end to the era of the shiny straddled object.
I'm not sure I accept his thesis. Certainly, iPads, iPods, and iPhones have iSwept the iWorld and evoke feelings of sublimated lust in the hearts of many a young man (and woman, and not-so-young technophiles of both sexes). But there's a certain non-sequitur quality to Seidel's logic, which, if I understand it correctly, Jane Austen might have paraphrased as, "It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single man, not in possession of a motorcycle, must be in want of an Apple gadget."
Personally, if I had to exchange my iPad for any Italian import, I'd go with Marisa Tomei--or, heck, even Sophia Loren. Who needs motorcycles?