The 12 Days of Christmas

Today a very serious debate has errupted in the office. How many total gifts are received during the 12 days of Christmas? Does the recipient receive one new gift each day for a total of 78 gifts or do they continue to get all the previous gifts in addition to the new one each day for a total of 358 gifts.

The lyrics clearly state the following:

On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me, three French hens, two turtle doves and a partridge in a pear tree

It does not say:

On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me, three French hens

I knew this is the only place to come to get the true answer. Sure there are technicaliites like the cows that come with the maids and the drums that come with the drummers, but I’ll attack that debate later.

Thanks for your opinions and logic.


[Moderator Hat ON]

On the Thirteenth day of Christmas, I gave the IMHO mods a thread on the twelves days of Christmas.

[Moderator Hat OFF]

Neither 358 nor 78.

They receive 364.

12 drummers
22 pipers
30 lords
36 ladies
40 milkmaids (plus 40 cows)
42 swans
42 geese
40 rings
36 calling birds
30 hens
22 turtledoves
12 partridges in pear trees

That’s 184 birds, 140 people, and 40 rings. Plus 40 cows and 12 trees.

So it goes something like this:

Day 1: Oh, it’s adorable; I love it! A partridge in a pear tree; you are so romantic!

Day 2: Turtle doves? You sweet thing! But I really didn’t need ANOTHER tree.

Day 3: Hens? That’s not very romantic. And my yard doesn’t have room for all these trees. I didn’t need more turtle doves, either.

Day 4: Oh, come on! Calling birds, now? How am I supposed to sleep? And if you’re going to give me hens, you could include the grain!

Day 5: Okay, rings are good. But stop with the birds! And I told the delivery guy, “Don’t even take that tree off the truck.”

Day 6: I’m glad you sent more rings…Because I’m gonna have to sell some of them to maintain this FARM I’ve got! Geese, for cryin’ out loud…

Day 7: Will you stop already?! I had to get two wading pools for these stupid swans! And my neighbors are complaining about the hens stinking up the yard, and those doves and calling birds cooing and billing at all hours!

Day 8: Eight milkmaids with eight cows? Are you out of your mind? My yard is going to be a manure pit!

Day 9: That’s it; we’re breaking up. My entire yard is mush, and the milkmaids and the dancing ladies tell me union regulations say I have to give them meals, and the Animal Society served notice on me for not giving the geese adequate conditions to incubate their eggs. Why couldn’t you just have given me perfume or something?

Day 10: What are these lords on, that they keep leaping? I’ve had to sell ALL the rings to pay for the upkeep of the birds, and the delivery guy threw the last three trees off the truck before I could stop him, and a dancing lady fell over one and broke her ankle and now she’s talking lawsuit. I wish I’d never met you.

Day 11: Didn’t you hear me when I said we’re breaking up? I have a migraine, and you send me pipers! My landlord has given me thirty days to vacate the premises. I will see you in court.

Day 12: NEWS BULLETIN: Local woman charged with aggravated assault. An unnamed drummer was attacked with a milking stool and suffered wounds to the head. A party of milkmaids, dancers, and pipers fled the scene in terror as the woman hurled chickens and geese after them. Sources say the assailant claimed to be stalked by “a mad farmer”.

I once received a hat box full of ornaments representing the 12 days of Christmas. It was actually pretty cool. But we don’t do a tree so I gave them to the Service Desk lady at the grocery store. She was thrilled.