It had been a while since there had been any decent action in the bedroom, and I was getting pretty toey. Tiesha and I had notched up some 16 years of happy marriage together, and although our love life was still pretty good, it was too often lacking that certain je ne sais quoi that had existed in those earlier bedridden Elwood days.

Hence my carefully orchestrated plan that Friday evening – a making whoopee lovemaking plan with my much loved wife. I had offered to cook Osso Buco for dinner – her winter favourite – and the ultimate offering of my cheffing repertoire, along with some welcome home from work stubbies of Fat Yak, followed by a bottle of red chosen with her annoying merlot bias in mind.

At meal’s end I would insist on doing the dishes while she had her personal laptop time. Upon returning to the sparkling kitchen for her bedtime chamomile tea, she would then join me in our love-nest, and, if she emerged from the ensuite wearing her short nighty and half-pissed smile, I knew that I was home and hosed, with another repeat practically guaranteed for Sunday morning.

Tragedy struck before the kettle had even boiled.

“Oh for Christ’s sake Steven!” her voice shot out from the kitchen, “How many damn times do I have to tell you about using the scouring pad on my Royal Doultons.”

I instantly knew that all was lost, and the Viagra tablet I had taken earlier had been sent on a fool’s errand. She thundered down the polished boards of the passage towards our candlelit boudoir, it’s ambience soon to be destroyed when she whacked on the bright overhead light, so that I could see all the better the vandalisation of her much prized glassware.

Given the choice of fight or flee I chose the latter, and grabbed my book from the bedside table, laid it open upon my chest, and feigned sleep.

She arrived at the end of the bed with a low-voiced “The book’s upside down Steven.”

Following the universal feigning guidelines applicable to both genders – once having commenced to feign, I had to see it through to the bitter end.

“Please look at what you have done to Julie’s 40th birthday present. Two of them are now ruined thanks to your hippy-like planet-saving refusal to use the dishwasher for environmental reasons.”

She strode with revengeful intent to my side of the bed, and even though my eyes remained firmly shut, I knew by the clinking of glass that the Doultons had been thrust directly in front of my face. “Look at them! Open your non-sleeping eyes you scourering bastard and fucking look at them!”

I was weathering a force ten gale here, alone and lost at sea, and the best I could manage was to keep my eyes closed. Truly pathetic.

“Christ almighty Steven, how many times have I asked you…”, at this point her voice trailed off to silence, until “What on earth?” and finally, a dismissive, “You prick!”

In my haste to grab a book to pretend that I had been reading, I had failed to notice it had been hiding my Viagra packet. Regardless of eyes still unopened, I knew that she had picked it up, and had read my name on the pharmacist’s instructions, along with the far more damaging words of 2 Rpts left.

She dropped the packet onto my upside down book, and without a sound she left the room. I heard the fridge door open, and I knew that she would be filling the scratched glass with some casked Sauv Blanc.

Manning up, I jumped out of bed and went down to talk to her. She was standing by the sink, looking out the kitchen window at nothing in particular.

“I’m so sorry Tiesh, I really am, I should have told you about using Viagra, I’ve been such a fool,” I said, as I joined her by the sink, “I wanted to, but I was worried that you might take it personally, that you might think that I was no longer sexually attracted to you, or that I no longer desired you, which isn’t the case, because I do and I always have.”

“But you need to use Viagra to get it up for me, is that it Steve? Is that where we are? Because I thought it was just for old men who couldn’t get an erection. You’re only forty-eight.”

“The truth is that I don’t really need to take Viagra, I do so as a form of insurance really, a guarantee that I can please you, and that first night I used it you called out ‘son of a gun’ and ‘ride ’em cowboy’ like you haven’t done for ages, and that led me through the rest of the packet.”

She mulled this over for a bit, picked up the second scoured glass and tipped half of her wine into it, took my hand and led me through the french doors to the lounge-room couch.

“I’m really sorry about the glasses Tiesh, I’ll go into Myer’s tomorrow -”

“Oh stuff the wine glasses! Who cares? It’s about us now. Where are we Steve? What happened to our sharing everything together?”

I moved closer to her, and put my arm around her, “I know that I’m not really old enough to be worrying about that erectile disfunction stuff, but the blokes at work have been talking about sex and growing older, and it kind of put the wind up me a bit about disappointing you, and the unhappiness that might lead to, and so on and on.”

She took my hand in hers, “Listen to me you idiot, I don’t want to make love with you the way we did when we were younger, I just want to make love with you the way we are today, no more – no less. Both of us Steven, as we age together. OK?”

I nodded an emotional yes and drew her into a kiss, one of those ongoing open mouthed soft hard meandering kisses where arms enclose, hands pull faces even closer, and tongues intertwine in the urgency of a gathered frenzy. A deeply passionate kiss that could take you back to where you should be.

Tiesha pulled away, “You took one of those tablets earlier, didn’t you?”

I nodded.

“And you’ll replace the Doultons?”

“Absolutely.”

“And the dishwasher next time?”

“I promise I will.”

And with that, the cool change arrived, and she led me away.