So I've always been fond of the Barenaked Ladies' song If I Had
, ever since kaneda_khan
first told me about hearing
it in a record store, being charmed by it, and buying the album, long
before the band made it big in the States.
But listening to the lyrics always made
Could you really buy all that stuff for a million dollars? That's not
really that much money any more, is it?
I decided to find out.
"If I had a million dollars
I'd buy you a house"
I'm going to buy you a house, it's going to be a house right here in
Shoreline, so I can visit you often, so you can put all thoughts of a nice
little cottage on the French Riviera right out of your head, to start
with. After a little browsing, I've decided I'll buy you this
house, for a cool $319,950.
"I'd buy you furniture for your house
(Maybe a nice chesterfield or
Why choose? Here's a nice
Chesterfield Ottoman in burgundy leather, a reproduction of a
Victorian piece, for just $639.95.
"Well, I'd buy you a K-Car
(A nice Reliant automobile)"
Well, according to this nice little review on Epinions.com, I could
probably pick up a 1985 Plymouth Reliant
'K' car for $600. (They're supposed to be good little cars,
"I'd build a tree fort in our yard"
This great little FAQ on
treehouses tells me that all the supplies to build a really decent one
will set me back about $1000. Sounds about right ....
"Maybe we could put like a little tiny fridge in there
Those are easy enough to come by. Here's
one from OfficeMax for $109.99.
"There would already be laid out foods for us
Like little pre-wrapped sausages and things"
Maybe it's declassé of me, but this makes me think of a Hickory
Farms assortment. The one I've linked to is just $19.99.
"Well, I'd buy you a fur coat
(But not a real fur coat that's
Did you know even the fake ones are expensive? Even this
Faux White Mink Serape
Coat is going to cost $395. I'm having second thoughts about
all this, you know.
"Well, I'd buy you an exotic pet
(Yep, like a llama or an
These are cheaper than I thought they'd be, actually. I can
get you a llama from this site for just
$500. I thought at first I might need to buy you more than one,
though -- the site also says,
"Remember llamas are herd animals and they need companionship from other
llamas. Don't buy a llama from someone who will sell you a single llama,
if you don't already have llamas, unless the llama is going into a guard
position." But then I realized a "guard position" would be fine -- it can
guard that house I'm buying you.
"Well, I'd buy you John Merrick's remains
(Ooh, all them crazy elephant bones)"
I'm afraid that's out of the question. John Merrick's remains have been
at the Royal London Hospital, since his death. Not even rich wacko
Michael Jackson has been able to convince the hospital to part with them,
so I don't think I'd manage it on my paltry budget. Sorry, I hope you
didn't have your heart set on this one. As a consolation, I'm getting you
Elephant Man on DVD for $17.99.
"We wouldn't have to walk to the store [...]
Now, we'd take a
limousine 'cause it costs more"
True enough. Weirdly, though, I
can't find many limousine rental places that are willing to list their
rates -- they want you to contact them for a quote. But this page
of limousine rental tips tells me I can expect to spend at least
$100 when renting one for a couple of hours. Close enough.
"But we would eat Kraft Dinner [...]
And buy really expensive
ketchups with it"
Kraft Dinner is too cheap for me to even bother
looking up the price, but I was curious about what constitutes an
"expensive ketchup." The most expensive one I could find was Steel's Gourmet
Ketchup, for $6.89. (I'd be remiss here if I didn't mention the
ketchup that cost Heinz half a million dollars, but I think we'll
stick with the Steel's.)
"Well, I'd buy you a green dress
(But not a real green dress,
This one nearly stumped me, I'll admit. Until I
found this Mock
Dress with 3/4 Sleeves, available in Hunter Green, for just
"Well, I'd buy you some art
(A Picasso or a Garfunkel)"
can't buy you Art Garfunkel, obviously, due to those pesky slavery laws.
Besides, he'd probably just sit around the house all day bothering your
llama and eating all your Kraft Dinner. That leaves the Picasso.
I didn't really think I could get you a real Picasso, frankly, not on this
measly budget. I mean, Les Noces de Pierrette was sold for over 50
million, and that was in 1989. But then I read about this
auction, where they sold prints and ceramics. (He made more than
2,400 prints during his life, you know.) The cheapest lots went for
£1,000, so let's assume I could get you a little something for about
"Well, I'd buy you a monkey
(Haven't you always wanted a
Sure, who doesn't? This page has a cute little baby girl Capuchin
monkey for $6,500.
"If I had a million dollars
I'd be rich"
Well -- not really. Not after I've blown $331,865.31 on you.
Admittedly, that means I'd still have $668,134.69 to play around with ....
Until April 15th, mind you.