My dad, like many a classic Aussie dad, loves a good yarn. Especially a yarn he’s been holding onto for years.
And so it came that he revealed the great conspiracy of 1966: The government ripped us off on chocolate bullets.
It all started with a seemingly harmless Maccas ad on TV. You know the one with the old couple on the bench with the “IOU $10” note? Well my dad is personally offended that the couple look much older than they’re supposed to be, because of course that makes him feel old.
“They’re definitely older than me, and I was 14 when decimal currency came out, and she said she was 16! That makes them 69 at least and they look a lot older than that!”
“It’s just an ad, Dad.”
“I remember the change over to decimal currency because I was working in a shop and you got less chocolate bullets for your money.”
Umm, what Dad?!
In 1966 the government decided to change Australia over to decimal currency, complete with a catchy tune about “in come the dollars, in come the cents, to replace the pounds and the shillings and the pence”. But that was all just a guise to rob Aussies of their beloved confectionery, apparently.
According to my dad, who worked in a suburban corner store, in the old money you got 8 chocolate bullets for a penny, or 48 for sixpence. But when decimal currency came in, sixpence was converted to 5 cents, and you only got 40 chocolate bullets for 5 cents. RIPPED OFF!
It just made me want a packet of chocolate bullets tbh. But the next day I casually recalled the rant to my mum and grandma over lunch, thinking it was a funny little anecdote. Big mistake – my grandparents owned a shop back then and it just opened the flood gates for another round of the chocolate bullet conspiracy.
“Granddad hated counting out those chocolate bullets!” they declared.
Firstly, why were you all counting out individual chocolate bullets and not just weighing them?! I mean use some common cents (classic dad joke).
Secondly, why are you all still crying over 5 cents? It cost me 10 cents for a bag of choc buds in primary school and they were carob! CAROB! I’ll take your short-changed chocolate bullets any day.