that wasn't a shitty cartoon at all. In fact, I bought the entire series when it was sold at Walmart for $25 in the reb box with the little DM book inside of it.
I was never that into it until WoTC bought it from TSR and even then, I got into it from playing Magic t3h Gathering.
I have like $500 worth of game stuff, I haven't bought any of the new 4.0 stuff though, all of mine is <= 3.5 Our DM plays with just paper and dice, so I realized quickly that I wasted a lot of money to get stuff that I never needed! I played twice in the last month or two, but been really busy from the holidays, weaknet, perl, gf, work, life, etc. I'd like to play more, but there's never time.
What's cool about D&D is that if you really get into it, and I don't mean speaking in character voices or dressing up (none of that shit ever happens IRL where I play), your brain opens up. Using your imagination in certain ways will help you think about things in your day to day life better and also, it makes you have better dreams. Einstein was a big fan of relating intelligence to imagination, did you know that?
think about it, he implied that if you had no imagination, but where smart with say, math, you were a calculator. a tool. D&D is a nice imagination booster!