Thomas Hawk has an excellent write-up of tips for new Digital SLR camera owners. A good quick read with some sage advice. In one of the updates, he adds a comment from "carpe icthus" (sieze the fish? my Latin's kind of rusty...) that reads:
"Cheap advice for beginners? In addition to the basic zooms for the range you need, pick up a 50mm f/1.8 or f/1.7. Every line has one, they're very cheap, you will instantly be able to do things with low-light and depth-of-field that you cannot do with a bridge camera, and practicing zooming with your feet will teach you a lot about composition.
I couldn't agree more with this comment. Last fall, I got a 50mm from Canon for less than $200 (I think) and it's gotta be the best lens purchase I ever made. My satisfaction level iwth my photographs have improved exponentially since I started using it. It's also super convenient for travel because it's so small and lightweight.