Why do we hurt the ones we love the most? Everything precious to you, all that brightens your day and is with you every step of the way. How else could you get through another Monday morning without Donnie Hathaway, T-Bone, Muddy, James, Wu Tang, Motorhead?

Yet we still do it and come back for more.

The iPod has been with us for a while now. The cult has spread and inevitable disaster has followed.

The iPod is supposed to be portable, yes, but nothing lasts forever.

The staggering variety of cases, covers, insurance and waterproof, combination-lock, stun-gun equipped security devices easily demonstrates how iPod users are preparing for the worst.

No amount of protection and preparedness, however, can prevent disasters caused by sheer stupidity.

The iPod does exactly what it says on the tin, but if you put one in a tin and dropped it off a building it probably wouldn't like it.

It's the professional rescue teams who see the real damaged goods.

Tom French at ukipodrepairs.co.uk has seen some casualties over the years.

He said: "The best ones have to be; 'it got submerged in water but only for a minute'.

"But without a doubt the funniest has to be; 'while walking in the country with my boyfriend, I took my iPod out of my pocket to change tracks only for it to slip out of my hands and fall into a fresh cow pat'.

"We could still smell that one even before opening the packaging."

Ben at iPodMods tech team described how one came in for repair with serious screen damage.

"The guy thought he would try to fix the scratches on his iPod screen with a Dremel drill. Need I say more?"

Ben has also seen his share of waterlogged pods.

"These guys aren't real good swimmers, are they?"

Stupidity hurts

Stupidity accounts for a lot of iPod damage. The culprits will tell you it's bad luck, of course.

Tom French again: "We had one from a guy who fell off his BMX in front of moving traffic and got run over.

"He was OK, but the iPod was 5mm thinner.

"We've also had a few that have been left in luggage at the airport, gone in the hold and come out like they have been steam rolled."

Patient confidentiality prevents practitioners like Tom and Bed from revealing the identities of the iPod owners who come to them for help.

One unlucky snowboarder who did come forward found out on the slopes of Chamonix his shiny new iPod was no match for hard packed snow.

We will call him Adam, learned the hard way his pod was not as indestructible as he had hoped.

"Cruising down the slopes with my iPod sitting in my breast pocket, blaring out some 'sic' tunes, when I spied a cool looking jump.

"So, after visualising exactly how I was going to hit the jump, I made my approach.

"After a couple of speed checks I hit the lip and began my rotation, this was where it all went wrong.

"Despite the speed checks I was going far too fast. My rotation was far too enthusiastic. I was far too high. Rather than stomping a beautifully executed 360 and recieving all the cheers from my peers, I over rotated, got completely lost and in a split second found myself face to face with the hard packed snow... SLAM!

"Face first from ten feet in the air, followed by 12 stone of snowboarder on my poor unsuspecting iPod sitting in my pocket.

"After the considerable pain subsided I put my headphones back in to hear the sound of silence. So I took out my iPod, studied it through cracked goggles to discover its life force had gone.

"After countless attempts at CPR and resetting, time of death was called and I had to endure the rest of the holiday without my music. A real bitch!"

Still the most common cause of serious iPod injury is the accidental damage caused by alcohol induced clumsiness.

iPod enthusiast Dan McCord told how easily drink used wrongly can seriously damage your bank balance.

"My mate managed to bugger his iBook when he was using his iPod pissed.

"Trying to carefully put down a pint on his desk as he went to change Playlists, he managed to drop the lot over the computer making it fizz and do other such worrying things.

"Even though it was connected, the 'pod survived. But the following day he remembered he'd cancelled the insurance because he didn't think it was worth paying a tenner a month.

"Needless to say, he had to fork out for a new iBook," he said.

Premeditated violence

Less frequent, equally as devastating, are the deliberate attacks.

More often than not, the iPod is the innocent victim.

Like the bystander at a Compton drive-by shooting or pawn in a sadistic game, the iPod often gets caught in the middle.

Tom French said: "One came in covered in glue. As a practical joke his work mates glued it to the office wall on his birthday."

Joe from iPodworld again: "A blind guy sent in his iPod to us for a battery and all the playlists were called names like 'more F****G heavy metal' and “your music is so dull, just like you'.

"Obviously his wife was getting frustrated with him."

As well as the real stories of stupidity and clumsiness, there are the scare stories.

Urban myths, as they do, are also starting to spring from nowhere.

There is the story of the husband who battered his wife to death with his iPod after she blanked it.

Not true, but still a good story.

Then, of course, there are the incidents which completely defy belief.

Joe at iPodworld has seen more than his fair share of disasters. This one takes some beating.

"One of our customers sent in their iPod for a replacement battery.

"Before we changed the battery we tested it, and it was fine.

"The customer just didn’t realise you could recharge it."