At least $200 to be exact. I should have known to use Utitlities Repair Disc every few months or so to repair corrupt discs, the reason behind slow performance on iTunes and Word.
I should have known my version of the 2008 iMac takes only 4 gigs of RAM, not 8.
I should have known that based on my iMac's RAM limitations, Lion was too hungry to use as an operating system.
Had I studied Mac forums, I would have known all these things. Instead, I took my iMac to the MacMall by my house and let their techs tell me all these things.
They charged me $235 for memory and install. And another $60 for scanning my hard-drive and putting in latest version of Snow Leopard. Another $35 for shipping and tax. That's a total of $330.
I could have bought the RAM for about $65 and the Snow Leopard for $70 for a total of $135.
Ignorance hurts, my man. And you lose Man Points.
From now on, when I buy a new computer, I'm going to load it with as much RAM as possible from the very beginning.