For those who care, I replaced my torch batteries today. So I have now replaced the original batteries that came with the torch when I bought it over two years ago at the start of 2003.
Over those years it has faithfully served me on a number of camps, a hike, and lots of other frequent occasions. After reaching its approx 150hours battery life the batteries finally gave up. Actually I think they gave up about a month or so ago when I noticed a dimming in the torches once radiant glow. Upon pulling it out to use it once again today I noticed the batteries had begun to start excreting some chemical. So they had to go before causing irreparable damage.
Anyway, enough about the batteries, my real point is to those who scoffed at my purchase of this marvelous LED torch. At the time it cost about $60. A nice small Princeton Tec LED Torch (Outdoor Attitude). Some might say expensive, but since then I have spent a total of $9 (spent today on slightly expensive duracells) extra on this torch in total over 2 years. So to keep the torch running I need to spend, on average, $4 on batteries a year for the torch.
When I bought my 3 cell blue maglight I spent about $50 (not including batteries). The maglight uses incandescent globes and so it would burn up a set of batteries during a 5 day camping trip. So in one year I would often have to buy 2-3 packs of new batteries. Even if these batteries cost the same as the 4xAAA I use in the LED torch (which they don't) I would still be paying more than triple with the maglight.
So after two years without buying batteries until today, I am claiming the torch has now paid for itself in battery savings.
Now with those savings on batteries and my new savings on coke I'll be rich in no time!