As any true fan of The Office could tell you, the best onscreen relationship didn’t play out between Jim and Pam, Michael and Holly, Dwight and Angela, or even Dwight and Michael. What really kept audiences coming back week after week and episode after episode were the endless pranks to which Jim subjected Dwight. From staplers in Jell-O to a wrapping paper desk, the show’s best practical jokester seemed to have an endless supply of ideas when it came to tormenting his arch nemesis. And as it turns out, he must’ve had an endless supply of spare change as well, given how expensive the sum total of these pranks would’ve been.
Thanks to the combined mathematical forces of one redditor and Buzzfeed, it’s estimated that Jim ended up spending, over the course of nine years of working alongside, making fun of, and generally pranking Dwight, somewhere between $7,000 and $10,000. And that, of course, doesn’t take into consideration the enormous costs in terms of productive work time Jim lost for the sake of a few (alright, a lot of) laughs.
In true Dwight fashion, reddit user jmorely14 judiciously created a spreadsheet estimating the costs of each and every one of Jim’s many, many pranks, something Mr. Halpert only did for loyal viewers once (when he impersonated Dwight and used his handy dandy calculator watch to tally up his expenses). On average, jmorely14 estimates, Jim spent $62.82 per practical joke, though the range in expenses was quite large. The ever popular office item in Jell-O, for example, would’ve only set Jim back the price of one instant Jell-O package, around $1.09. But then, there was the uber-expensive Morse code prank, a combined attack by Pam and Jim, which required the hiring of a nanny and the enrollment in Morse code classes. This, the redditor believes, may have cost as much as $3,120.
All in all, jmoreley14 believes that a conservative calculation of pranking costs sets the grand total at $5,590.95, but the ever pessimistic BuzzFeed believes that this figure doesn’t take into consideration potential collateral incurred by damaged property, ordering of custom suits, and the like.
So thank goodness little Cece Halpert isn’t a real baby girl — otherwise, explaining where her college tuition went could be a tricky prank to pull off, even for Jim and Pam.