At one time or another, we have all probably stretched our vocal cords to get all the way through "The Twelve Days of Christmas" without stopping for some sort of deep breath.
That aside, have you ever wondered how much all of the items in that holiday carol would actually cost? Well, I recently discovered PNC Financial Services Group figures that out each year.
PNC's latest tabulation shows both good news and bad.
First, the bad news.
The total cost for all of those would-be gifts would likely run you more than $39,000.
Now, the good news.
That figure is only about 1.2 percent higher than last year, using the current inflation rate.
PNC says the lower inflation rate can be explained in part by the plunging gold prices, which would make "five gold rings" much cheaper. (Admit it, you just sang that line of the song to yourself.)
More from the PNC Group:
º A static federal minimum wage means nine ladies dancing will receive the same compensation as they did last year. The same goes for eight maids-a-milking, although PNC is not factoring the cost of dairy cows into its analysis. Plus, only a tiny fraction of the U.S. population would have those readily available.
º Bloomberg.com reports "the presumably more skill-based work" of those lords-a-leaping, pipers piping and drummers drumming would probably be seeing a bump in pay "as the labor market tightens."
Here's a complete breakdown, just in case you had been considering such an outlay:
º One partridge in a pear tree, $220.13 (up 0.1 percent).
º Two turtle doves, $375 (unchanged).
º Three French hens, $181.50 (unchanged).
º Four calling birds, $599.96 (unchanged). I wonder why the cost of the turtle doves and calling birds has gone unchanged but that single partridge saw a spike in price?
º Five gold rings. $750 (down 9.1 percent). And, you just sang that to yourself again, didn't you?
º Six geese-a-laying, $390 (up 8.3 percent).
º Seven swans-a-swimming, $13,125 (unchanged). It's the bird thing again. Why have swans not gone up in price, but geese, which I would think would be far more plentiful, have risen?
º Eight maids-a-milking. $58 (unchanged).
º Nine ladies dancing. $7,552.84 (unchanged).
º 10 lords-a-leaping, $10,000 (up 3 percent).
º 11 pipers piping, $2,804.40 (up 3.5 percent).
º 12 drummers drumming, $3,038.10 (up 3.5 percent).
If I were to ever win some sort of lottery, I think I might buy these things for my wife. Until then, I'll have to be content with singing "FI-I-I-IVE gold rings!"