Hi there! If you’re coming to this page from this blog, would you be so kind as to tell an ignorant American the context of the link? I don’t need an entire translation, but the basic premise of the post might be interesting. If you leave it in the comments section, I’ll be sure to check it out. Thanks!
Happy Memorial Day – which, in addition to celebrating those who died for our freedom, marks the official (i.e. non-astronomical) kickoff of summer. Welcome to the Summer of 2009.
Of course, that means it’s also the 40th anniversary of the Summer of ’69, that season which was forever memorialized by Bryan Adams’s 1980s pop classic. And what has changed in 40 years, besides the fact that Guitar Center is probably a better place to get your first real six-string than a five-and-dime?
The folks at Billshrink answer that on their blog, where they compare 1960s prices with today’s – but, unlike the typical “bread-only-cost-a-nickel-in-19XX” comparisons that many people use, Billshrink actually alters the 1969 price tags to reflect 2009 dollars.
This offers a particularly useful perspective on the real costs of products today versus decades past – and it’s actually good news. If you went into a record store in 1969 to buy the Beatles’ Abbey Road Album, it would cost you $17.34 in today’s money. Today, you can buy most albums online for less than $10. Converse Chuck Taylors may seem pricey at $45 in 2009, but they actually cost the equivalent of $46 four decades ago.
Of course, your first real six string may end up being more expensive: a Gibson Les Paul goes for about $3,500, a grand more than you would have paid back then.