Ahh, that time of the year again. Putting up the Christmas Tree. I can think of only one worse activity: Having my toenails gnawed off by a rabid honey badger.
Last night, we unpacked our first pre-lit tree. The first step was to locate the male and female receptors.
“Do you know what a female receptor is?” Pete asked.
“Is that a trick question?” I replied. I haven’t a clue what a female receptor is.
“What does one even look like?” Pete asked.
“I’m not an expert on this particular topic but I’m going to assume it will look like a cup or a chalice,” I replied. “I remember that from The Da Vinci Code.”
Thank God the 123-page instruction manual was illustrated.
“We’re missing a female receptor,” Pete said. “We have three males, one female.”
“That could be an interesting way to celebrate the holidays,” I replied.
Pete wasn’t amused. “Don’t be funny right now. Let’s focus on getting this tree up. I’m already stressed.”
“Do we really need both female receptors?” I asked.
Apparently that second female receptor is critical. “If I’m deciphering the pictures correctly, the second female receptor is what allows the tree to-,” Pete said before stopping abruptly. “Stand erect with substantial girth.”
“We are putting a Christmas Tree up, right?” I asked Pete. He nodded. “Okay, let’s hop online and order a replacement piece.”
Note: I would not recommend typing “cheap female receptor” into your web browser. Trust me on this.
After nearly an hour of sifting through craigslist ads and invitations to join naughty webcam shows, we gave up. I had to down a shot of vodka immediately after closing the browser.
“I think we’ll need to improvise,” I said. “Hand me one of the male receptors.”
Pete threw a receptor to me and I spent a few minutes bending and twisting it. I curved the male receptor into a shape that came as close as possible to the one female receptor we had on hand.
“Let’s see if this works,” I said.
Pete and I lifted the base of the tree and slid the male receptor into our newly converted one.
“Okay, let go of the tree,” I said. Pete backed away and the tree stayed upright. “Oh my God. It worked. The lights are lit and everything!”
“Does this mean we have a transgender tree?” Pete asked.
“I guess I hadn’t really thought about it that way. But I believe it does.”
Pete stared at the tree for a minute and then raised his eyebrows. “Hmm. Okay. What’s for dinner. I’m starving.”