It’s Friday night. You’re done with work for the weekend and so is your spouse. You get home minutes apart, flop down on the couch, look at the time, each other and immediately think “Oh crap, I forgot to return the Netflix movie.” Just kidding! You remember you’re actually in love and want to do something fun together since the night is young and Jeopardy only takes up a half hour of your nightlife. “But Kyle,” you say. “We’re married and awkward and don’t know how to ask each other out on a date. It’s been years.” What do you have to fear? It’s not like you might ask your wife out on a date and she rejects you and then you’ll never see her again.
Perhaps you’re not afraid of rejection (as you shouldn’t be after marriage, which is chronologically the last major question you have to really sweat out in the relationship), but you’re afraid of it sounding too flat, like you’re asking a friend if he wants to go get a beer. Let’s look at an example of asking a friend for a beer:
“Hey, Joey, it’s uh, Fred. What’s up, brother? Any big plans tonight? Hey, wanna go grab a couple drinks at Paulie’s on Main?”
Now let’s look at why you can’t say this to your wife:
- Her name isn’t Joey
- She’s not your brother
- She told you that morning she has plans and this would reveal you didn’t pay attention
- She hates Paulie’s and thinks it’s essentially a giant ashtray
Seriously- if you think a casual invite like that, even when worded properly according to name and gender pronouns, you’re already on the losing end. Yes- your significant other is essentially your best friend, but she doesn’t drop by unannounced ever and drink the beers in your fridge and never replace them. This is the LOVE of your life. Let’s make this a little fancy and add some flavor to the proceedings so the romantic atmosphere around the date is setup by the proposal.
The Phone Call
I can already hear you breathing heavy with nervousness. The phone! The last recorded phone call was made in 1800 B.C. (Before Cellphones) but that doesn’t mean you can’t do this. Call them at work or call from work- it doesn’t even have to be during the day. You could even be, dare I say, playful, and call your partner from the other room and act coy. Do you remember the first time you called them and spoke on the phone? Of course not, because if you’re alive and reading this, you were born after phone calls were a thing. Do. Not. TEXT. Nothing says “I don’t care about dates and just want to sit in my underwear watching Netflix while eating Ben and Jerry’s” more than a text message date.
The Card in the Morning
For those who enjoy living in the moment and don’t like to plan far enough in advance to accomplish anything, this is a nice “day of” type of surprise. Leave the card leaning against something they always use or take with them to work, i.e. car keys, pocketbook, flask with scotch- as it guarantees they’ll see it and either be filled with lustful joy and butterflies or immediate anxiety over having nothing to wear and whether the place you’re going to has dining options for gluten-free Vegans who prefer their food blessed by a Rabbi, a Priest, and a witch doctor.
The Text Message
Haha! Fooled you- there is one way you could get away with a text message date request. If you’re going to be cute about it, try it through a series of images you send to them and make it a game wherein they figure out what the images mean. Assuming your partner doesn’t have the IQ of a rutabaga, they should be able to determine they are being asked on a date or that you’re drunk texting them.
The Say Anything Boombox
If you haven’t seen the classic John Cusack flick in which an average student hooks up with the class Valedictorian, we can sum it up for you as being the Breakfast Club minus the entire plot and cast of the Breakfast Club. Nobody remembers anything about this film other than John Cusack stands outside Ione Skye’s bedroom at dawn, holding a boombox, and just when you think he’s about to play Pantera- SURPRISE! He actually plays a Peter Gabriel love song and everyone is happy. You could do this, assuming you remember your wedding song and that your spouse is the type of person who enjoys the sound of blasting music before they’ve had their first coffee.
EDIT- I was just informed nobody has boomboxes anymore and you’ll have to hold up your iPhones instead. This is good, as this allows anyone with weak spaghetti arms (example: me) to hold up the music playback device longer if they don’t respond right away.
The Scavenger Hunt
All it takes is a well-placed clue in the morning leading to a string of other clues eventually leading to a date-night location. Don’t make the clues too obvious- try sending them to find clues at these places in this order: inside your house, in the front yard, a garbage can on 54th and Barry Avenue, an abandoned mill, the state of Illinois, underneath a random seat in a movie theater showing a Jennifer Aniston romantic comedy, and finally to your fancy , weirdly-named restaurant “ Le jambon etincelant” (literal translation: The Sparkling Ham.).
Literally Just Asking Nicely
Talking is still a thing that happens in fleeting moments between intense texting sessions and games of Candy Crush. It’s an ancient technique in which one uses vibrations in their throat to emit sounds to form words, which then form sentences like “I think I just farted.” But that’s not what you want to say! Spoiler Alert: you want to say something sweet like “Darling, if you’re not doing anything this Friday, I would love to take you somewhere on a date and enjoy your company and the sweet sounds of your laughter; the artistic beauty of the shine in your eyes and your wondrous smile.” Of course, this is 2017, so it will likely come out as “Hey bae, want 2 go out 2maro? YOLO lol” and then dab in their face.
You should still take dating a bit seriously, even if you’ve been married for a bazillion years. What’s the point of a date if it lacks all the hallmarks of a romantic relationship? You know your spouse best and what will catch their attention, so heed my suggestions and take the date from being a TV dinner in front of Jeopardy to a night of passion with a creative question that harkens back to your awkward high school years- minus the acne and bad haircuts.