so i decided on the Nikon.
i stopped in at the camera store on my way to work today and had a LONG conversation with the lady that runs the place (nice 73 year old french lady
). she let me play around with like 2/3 of the stuff in the display cases because "i look like a nice enough boy". after my screwing around with the stuff i decided on the Nikon because it feels a little bit better in my hands. the Cannon was a little bulky for my liking and the menus and features and stuff felt a little more intuitive. so i finalized on the D3000
she let me play with some lenses too and convinced me that for what im planing on using it for i will be ok with the 18-55mm kit lens and a 55-200mm lens for my out door stuff like i do allot
(example from my last trip to Montana)
and a 60mm Macro lens. but she DID say that if i mess around in Photoshop and learn how to work the camera i wouldn't need one for decent macro shots. just that it would me MUCH easier with a macro lens