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Tips for spicing up your sex life, part 1 

Monogamy's not just an eight letter word for monotony--it's the entryway to new dimensions in sex

I'm bored in bed. Monogamy's turning into another word for monotony. I love my wife, but I know what she's going to do before she does. Worse, I know what I'm going to do before I do it. Four pumps here, flip her over, five pumps there. It's all become so mechanistic that they only thing that works is fantasizing about other women, which makes me feel like I'm cheating. We've been together 10 years. Feels like yesterday emotionally but forever sexually, if you know what I mean. How do we add some spice when all we got is salt and pepper?

— Bored Stiff

Dear Bored,

You're never going to bust out of that yawn factory you call your sex life by coming up with new techniques. It's not a skill you need (though that helps) and it's not a new position (although that helps, too). What you need is a new mind-set. The kind that defines great sex in one sentence: It isn't what you do to me, it's where you take me.

So how do you take or get taken, and where exactly is it that you end up? You'll know when you get there, grasshopper. Keep reading.

Since the penis and clitoris aren't known for their sense of direction, some other organ needs to do the traveling: Your mind.

Right now, you're thinking, "How can I feel more?" but I'm saying the question should be, "How can I experience more?" Hands, mouths, and orifices can give you different feelings, but only your mind can give you a different experience. (Well, the Pink Pony can, too, but let's not quibble.)

Start by turning a blind eye to your bodies. I mean literally. Blindfolds are an uncanny way of turning the familiar into the mysterious. By subtracting one sense, blindfolds require the other four to work harder. Without vision, two hands can feel like four or six. The intriguing part is that you don't know where the next touch or probe is going to come from. Sensations are heightened and here's the best part: Everybody looks like a million bucks!

So here's how it works: Get a soft fabric that covers most of your face (could be an oversized blindfold or head cover for you; a veil for her). Blindfold yourselves and sit naked on the opposite corners of the bed. On a whispery count of three, slowly advance toward each other. Touch, explore, discover. What do you do? Where do you go? You don't know. That's the point. If neither of you can see each other's facial expressions during the action, it'll leave you with a tingling curiosity: "What's she thinking?" "What's she feeling?"

Think of it as a blank canvas for the imagination. By depriving yourselves of sight, you create anticipation and heighten the senses. When that happens, every position is a new position — unless darkness works its mischief and you knock her off the bed or she calls you by the wrong name. Then it's time to crack open the Kama Sutra.

Now, if you want to make the blindfold game even more intense, do something most couples dream about doing when they fight: Stuff a gag in your partner. That way you'll have to communicate exclusively through touch and body responses, adding yet another dimension to your experience. Next week, we'll talk about taking each other's sexual inventory and how the goods you discover on the shelf can be put to uses you hadn't thought of. Remember, the point of "spice" is to add another dimension to your sex life and that usually means playing with that thing between your ears, not your legs.

Mike "The Sexorcist" Alvear hosts HBO's "The Sex Inspectors," blogs at mikealvear.com and teaches monthly blogging workshops with Hollis Gillespie. Got a burning or a why-is-it-burning question for the Sexorcist? E-mail him at sexorcist@creativeloafing.com.

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