We’re 12 days from Christmas, so how about that ever-popular but meaningless look into what all the items in that most annoyingly monotonous of all holiday songs cost. The Grand Total. Not that somebody you know is expecting a partridge under the tree, but the birds might be a good deal if you can get one sold separately from the pear tree. I actually know a few people who’d probably be delighted to receive a pear tree this year, or some other type of flora perhaps. Lords-A-Leaping not likely a highly sought after gift, but again, I know a few people. Best if we just tell ’em we’re asking for a, friend. Not on the list, because it isn’t mentioned in the song, is a good old Christmas Tree. Green and sticky with piney-smelling sap. Displayed under strings of bare white bulbs on a corner lot on the outskirts of town. The kind of place where the attendant might offer to tie it to the roof of you car, ala “A Christmas Story.” Yes, with twenty bucks you could find a tree and buy the family a chicken dinner on the way home. But, Oh fuuudge…those days are long gone.
Anyway PNC Bank does an annual study on the cost of all the stuff in the tune, and the hardly working Research Team here at The Morning Show has put together a breakdown of the cost for you here. Please don’t thank us by sending a fruitcake.
Twelve drummers drumming . . . $3,267 to hire them. Eleven pipers piping . . . $3,021. Ten lords-a-leaping . . . $13,980. Based on how much it would cost to hire ten dancers from the Philadelphia ballet. Nine ladies dancing . . . $8,308. Based on hiring nine women from a modern dance company in Philly. Eight maids-a-milking . . . $58. Cheapest on the list. That’s eight women milking cows for an hour at the federal minimum wage of $7.25. Seven swans-a-swimming . . . $13,125. Six geese-a-laying . . . $720. Five gold rings . . . $1,245, up 39%. It’s for five 14-carat gold rings according to a national jewelry chain. Four calling birds . . . $600. Three French hens . . . $319. Two turtle doves . . . $600. And a partridge in a pear tree . . . $280. The partridge costs the same as last year. But fertilizer prices are up, so pear trees have jumped 26%.
The total is $45,523, up 10.5%. (Or If you were to buy the items over and over each day like the song suggests, that’s 364 total gifts, and over $197,000.)