While I might find myself responding to the very suggestion of "romance" with nervous, awkward giggling, I am very rarely against holidays. I have no problem at all with Valentine's Day, and in honor of it, I bring to you a list of 10 of my best all-purpose date plans:
1. Go for a walk at a local cemetery and read the stones.
2. Drive around in fancy neighborhoods and select the features you'd choose for your imaginary mansions ("I'll have the white pillars on the front porch, the red brick facade, and a hot tub in the backyard, but I'll skip the 3-car garage. Boring!")
3. Walk/bike/drive down a street you've never been to before, just to see what's there.
4. Find an acupressure path (lumpy rocks stuck in cement) and challenge each other to a barefoot race (Guaranteed romance factor: Angel proposed to me minutes after a race on the acupressure path at the local park).
5. Work together to pull a prank (or multiple pranks) on beloved relatives or friends (i.e. write anonymous letters and drive out of your way to mail from an odd post office, booby-trap a car with glitter, move their stuff around). Some of the most interesting pranks are best achieved through teamwork.
6. Go to an arcade. Do this regularly, but never spend all the tickets you win, and eventually blow all of your tickets on over 10 lbs. worth of candy. You'll feel like millionaires...at the very least, candy -obsessed millionaires.
7. Go to the beach during a bad storm to watch the waves. Dress warm! If you happen to get pulled over for a cracked light cover on the way home, expect that the policeman will find your story of an outing to the beach slightly unbelievable, given the current weather conditions.
8. Find old childhood photos and albums and spend some time listening to and telling stories of the pre-marriage days and laughing at old haircuts (boy, I'm glad we didn't know each other in high school...).
9. Do a science experiment you've always wanted to try. Putting mentos in coke, constructing parachutes and dropping eggs off the balcony (my favorite), growing plants from seed, dissecting organs from the butcher shop (my worst nightmare), whatever sounds like fun to you.
10. Play hide and seek in the dark. This is terrifying. Put away everything precious or breakable first. My strategy is to just hide and never ever ever leave my hiding place until the lights come back on.