It's often been said that variety is the spice of life, which means some pretty depressing things for monogamy. Namely, that being with the same person forever, sexually and romantically, is sort of the equivalent of eating your favorite food every day. Most people love rice, but not as their only option, aside from masturbating to pictures of rice's Facebook friends in sexy bikini vacation photos.
I firmly believe that you can have rice every day, if you mix it up. (I mean this literally if you live in certain Asian countries or are severely impoverished and have a hotpot). You can keep the flame alive, in the bedchamber and the heart chamber with minimal effort. The key is remembering to do little things for your wife or longtime girlfriend or life partner that keep her surprised and sexually interested— almost to the point of wariness. I know that remembering to be unexpected seems counterintuitive, which is why it's important to plan your spontaneity with laser precision.
I've assembled some tips to keep your relationship feeling freshly shucked. Love is like a car, or intestines, and romance is like the oil change, or colonoscopy. Print these out and keep them in your pocket—you'll be magically transported back to a time when you didn't think of sex as an annoying reason to take off your robe. Back when seeing each other still made you a little nervous. Maybe nervous-er, if you're really good at it.
So put a rose in your teeth and let's go!
• Set an iPhone alert once a month for ROMANCE. On that day, do something romantic, like bringing her a favorite snack or showing up at work to serenade her in front of her colleagues. If she ever sees the iPhone alert, act casual and pretend like ROMANCE is the name of an adult video store.
• Sometimes jealousy is a real aphrodisiac. Why not give her the illusion that you've been cheating on her without any of the actual cheating. Have a friend call your cell phone repeatedly at odd hours, or quickly cover up your computer screen whenever she walks into a room. Now take her in your arms. Surprise! You've been taking a ballroom dancing class the whole time.
• Use an Internet coupon for a couple's massage. Let the soothing music and scent of bamboo take you into your own little world, and feel free to talk like the two people giving the massage aren't there. Maybe discuss how weird it is to be massaged, as a couple, by two people, and wonder aloud if the masseuses would consider having sex with you.
• Why not make a trail of rose petals leading to the bedroom? Or breadcrumbs. Sometimes women reeeeeeeeally want to have sex and we just get lost.
• Have a friend call your significant other from the hospital and say that she should get down there, right away. (If you don't have a friend, use your Paul Lynde impression and pretend to be a sassy male nurse.) When she gets there, have a doctor tell her that you have been in a terrible accident. Surprise! The doctor is a stripper.
• Disaster often brings people together. Try to engineer some kind of bridge collapse when you are together, or schedule a vacation when you think there will be an earthquake.
• Open Tilda Swinton's Wikipedia page. Say something like, "Wow, Tilda Swinton and her three-way marriage are really progressive, don't you think? She's so unconventionally beautiful." If your significant other agrees, go ahead and start checking the Portland Craigslist for people who want to be part of some kind of arrangement. If she doesn't, go ahead and masturbate to Tilda Swinton's Wikipedia page. She is unconventionally beautiful.
• Women really love musicians and sleeping with famous authors or actors. But if you don't have any natural talent, remember that women have really active imaginations. Accidentally crush things to give the impression that you have acquired incredible strength, and maybe let her catch you changing into or out of an outfit really quickly. Come home late at night disheveled and distracted, and maybe make one of those fake newspaper headlines about a mysterious vigilante running amok in the city. She will start to think that maybe you are Batman, who has an awful lot of sex. However she may start to think you are a serial killer and will be so relieved when you are not that she will have sex with you.
• Absence makes the heart grow fonder. Just disappear for a few days. If you're not a minor, she can't do anything for 24 hours. Try it!
• Pick up a copy of Bon Appetit and choose a recipe together. Make a day of it and shop European-style by hitting a farmer's market and butcher shop instead of going to a supermarket chain. Then prepare the meal together while drinking a nice wine and listening to a compilation CD of Cole Porter songs. When she reveals that she's poisoned your food, reveal that you have also poisoned hers. Laugh, and die well-matched. You're in love again!