This article is a part of Summer Lovin’ Week 2017.
They say all good things must come to an end, like your favorite TV show or Sonic’s half-price shakes after 8 or the summer relationship you feel is just getting started. But what if it didn’t have to end? What if you could cling to that new love with the desperate grip of a teenager on a purloined bottle of Smirnoff Ice? While we don’t recommend stalking your summer lover to their hometown if they’re not local (we can’t all be Sandy and Danny and live the plot of Grease), we do have some alternative go-big-or-go-home suggestions to help force that emotional bond so your summer fling can withstand the changing of the seasons. If you never put yourself out there, you’ll never know what might have been!
1. Stand outside their window with your iPhone blasting music like you’re the second coming of John Cusack until their dad turns the hose on you.
2. A serenade in the mall food court is sure to net you some brownie points. Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You” is always appropriate.
3. Forget flowers; show up with a flock of doves to release when you pick them up for a date.
4. Plan an elaborate seven course meal in a local park, complete with musical accompaniment. Make them feel like the center of your universe.
5. Dress for the relationship you want. If that means wearing a suit and tie or a cocktail dress to your dinner at Red Lobster, so be it.
6. Surprise them with a pet to share! Introducing emotional burdens and shared responsibilities early on is a great way to make sure your significant other takes your calls.
7. Show them you have long term potential: even if you have no hands-on experience, give fixing their plumbing or car a try!
8. Be spontaneous: do a magic trick every now and then to keep things fresh. It’s not just kids who love it when you pull coins from their ears.
9. Always maintain eye contact while your partner is talking; it helps them know you’re paying attention! If it feels uncomfortable, that’s just because neither of you are used to it yet!
10. Cultivate frequent PDA to make sure everyone in any given public space knows just how much you love your boo. The expectations of strangers can help you pressure your significant other into staying! But it’s not peer pressure; it’s just maintaining the status quo.
11. Dust off those poetry books! E. E. Cummings has some sexy lines you can croon. Quote Shakespeare ad nauseum. Ostentatiously read aloud Pablo Neruda’s poetry in the original Spanish (if you don’t actually speak Spanish, just fake it!). The options are endless!
12. Make them a new mixtape every week. Preferably songs you’ve written and performed yourself about their good looks or wit or how much they remind you of your hot childhood babysitter.
13. Start planning fall and winter events–what will your couples’ costume be for Halloween? Are you going to your office holiday party together? These questions must be answered before summer ends!
14. Tell them you really identify with Buffy the Vampire Slayer sixth season Willow: you too would break all kinds of rules, commit all kinds of crimes, if your partner were murdered.
Beating that end-of-summer expiration date is hard, but those haters who spout platitudes like “When God closes a door, he opens a window” or “There are more fish in the sea” clearly aren’t talking to you. Your love is pure and with enough imagination and a little luck, you and your summer love will go on to crunch leaves together in the fall.