Just realized that after all my whining posts regarding my Sony Cybershot accessories, I never closed the loop on the tale of my Sony accessories.
If you recall, before Christmas I had lost the charger and USB cable for my "older model" Cybershot (bought merely 5 months ago). The Sony store wanted to sell me a new charger for $99.99 and a card reader (the USB cable is no longer available) for $79.99. After looking at a number of online options, I could not find much better. Considering I had only paid $149.00 for the camera in the first place, these options seemed ridiculous. I actually went and purchased a new camera.
Then, on a last ditch internet search, I discovered an Amazon seller with the charger for only $6.56. Yes, you read that correctly SIX DOLLARS and FIFTY-SIX CENTS! Duh. Paid another $6 in shipping and that was all she wrote!
Now, the USB cable was still an issue. So I found another store that sold a Sony memory stick with a USB card reader for $59.99. No-brainer.
The day after I bought that stick/card reader I went to the basement for something unrelated and ran across the original box in which my camera had been purchased. I opened it up and what did my weary eyes see ----- an unopened package containing a USB cable!
It seems that the cable that I'd been using (and lost) was not the one that had come with my camera. It was the cable that I'd been using with my Konica Minolta DSLR. When Konica Minolta got out of cameras they sold their business to Sony. Therefore Sony had been using a USB connector originally used by Konica Minolta.
All's well that ends well.
p.s. returned the new camera
A $6.56 charger. The $99 dollar version that the Sony store sells does NOT come with the car adapter!