I want everyone reading this to sit down immediately. It’s important because what I’m about to say will not only be life changing – it may in fact be the single greatest discovery one woman has ever made and I want to make sure that when I say it – nobody keels over and conks their head on a coffee table or a toilet – depending on where you read my blog but lets be serious I know it’s the later. Okay? We good? Everybody sitting? Here we go. I Heidi Clements, have discovered the secret to stop menopausal hot flashes and sweatiness. Boom Shaka Laka!! Let me start at the beginning.
For those of you who’ve read my book – some things have changed since it’s been published and I feel it’s my duty to update you.
1. I get hot flashes now.
They are constant. They are fucking annoying. They are ruining my hair. I have been forced to purchase a handheld fan and get looks from the boys I share a writers room with when I turn it on and point it at my head. I also like to pretend I’m a supermodel on a photo shoot when I do this.
2. I finally got that tattoo of my dog Zoey who died.
It’s her name on my right wrist. I didn’t get a giant picture of her head on my shoulder but I thought about it.
3. I am now a person who leaves the house without underpants.
And there we have it folks. Number three.
So, last night, I was invited to go hear one of the stars of “Baby Daddy” sing a few songs from his upcoming album. (he was amazing) The first problem was – what to wear. Now I don’t want to call myself obese because that’s just silly. I’m not obese. I’m morbidly obese. I’m a house. I’m a building with shoes. I’m puffed up so big if you stuck a pin in my I’d balloon all the way to Jersey. At least, that’s how I feel lately. I’m not sure why this is. I work out everyday. I don’t eat that much. I am confused. I am exhausted. I am running out of things that I think I look good in and last night my bedroom looked like a graveyard filled with stacks of dead body skirts and pants. I finally settled on a long tight skirt that sort of acted like a girdle but when I went to put on underwear the panty lines were so hideous because there was spillage over the top and out the bottom. Not cool. What to do? Well, I did what many girls do but I myself find truly gross disgusting and weird. I went out without underwear. At first it was okay. I didn’t really notice. But the second I sat down in my car – my two fat thighs started touching and I’m not gonna lie – it was odd – it was downright creepy. And depressing. But it was too late to turn back because it was – well too late. I parked by the event – about three blocks away – and began my walk. The only problem was – it was on a side street in Hollywood and my walk to the venue was suddenly feeling very rape-y. I was literally walking down rape alley, by myself, with no underwear on. This was clearly a mistake. When I got attacked somebody would say I was asking for it. “Of course she was raped. She was on rape alley with no panties.” So I hurried along and finally made it to the venue. I kept thinking that other people would find out I was unclothed in the pants area. I was nervous. I felt weird. But then it happened. Every single person in the place was complaining about the heat – except me. Young people were sweating – visibly. I was not. Now I’ve become a person who is hot everywhere constantly. The most common phrase I utter these days is – “Is it hot in here or am I having a hot flash?” But last night – it wasn’t me. And I finally realized why. It was the underwear – or in this case – the lack thereof. It turns out the secret to staying cool is a skirt and no undies. It turns out – the vagina is the airway we should be leaving open – a breezeway dare I say that lets the hot world around us just wave in and out. Just like the Hatch in Lost, my girlie parts are trapping heat and if I don’t push the button the whole things gonna blow. Yes, the unpantied vagina is a gateway to keeping cool.
I was so happy with my discovery that I forgot how fat I was on the way home and stopped to secretly buy some ice cream – Ben and Jerry’s half baked which thanks to my friend JL is now going to be a major problem for me. There I was in the supermarket without undies in the freezer section thinking – I pulled off two big things tonight and no one will ever know. And that’s when I looked up to see my friend Victoria walking down the aisle. Caught.
So – the moral of this story is – if you’re having a hot flash ladies – take off your undies – but if you need to get ice cream at 11pm – go to a supermarket in someone else’s neighborhood because getting caught with your hand in the freezer is way more embarrassing than getting caught without your underwear on. At least in my world.
“Everyone’s on it. It’s no biggie.” So said my friend Joshua at work the other day regarding the on line dating craze that’s sweeping the nation – Tinder. “You just put your picture in. Say what age range you want to date and boom, men start popping up in your phone.” This did sound simple. Who doesn’t want men popping up in their phone? “Do I have to talk to them?” I asked. “No” he said. “You can’t actually text with them until they’ve liked you as well. Once you’ve matched with each other – then you can text.” This sounded pretty good. In fact – it sounded kinda fun. I uploaded my photo and put in my age range – 40 – 55 and I started sliding through my choices. It was like central casting for prisoners, or weight watchers, or some kind of creepy grandpa dating service. This was not going to be fun at all. In 1.3 seconds I was already over Tinder. Josh told me to keep looking. And so later that night – I did. I sat quietly in my bed while The Real Housewives of Some City played in the back ground and I clicked on men. Swipe to the left means NOPE – swipe to the right means – ME LIKEY. I swiped right on a 40 year old. He was super cute. He liked blueberries. Who doesn’t like blueberries. Instantly the words “It’s a Match!” flew onto my screen. This meant he had actually liked me first. I was intrigued. I waited to see what happened next. Nothing. I clicked on another picture – a 45 year old paramedic firefighter. I clicked on him. I happen to have a fire that needs extinguishing. In my pants. “It’s a match!” again came flying onto my screen. This is fantastic! I’m literally a hot property in Tinder world. But I didn’t want to text anyone. That seemed desperate – like the one guy I matched with who instantly sent me a text that said “what are you doing tonight?” – uhm not texting you back you big desperado. I have a life. I didn’t actually have a life that night but I wasn’t going to let him know that. There was one really young guy who kept sending me “Moments” which are weird little photos of things they like. One moment was a waterfall. I wanted to drown him under it. I deleted his moments and quickly hit the single greatest button on Tinder – UNMATCH. Oh how simple life is! Poof. Guy gone. A couple of days later I had six matches. Well I had eight but two guys unmatched me the second we matched up. This was kind of depressing. What was it about my picture that they liked initially and then seconds later was repelled by? Could they see something in it that I couldn’t? Like my sheer hatred for almost everything? Tinder was starting to bum me out. Nobody was sending me a message. Sure they liked my photo and the matches were flying back and forth on my screen but they were just a bunch of first named faces staring at me from my iphone. Everyone kept telling me to write them first but this didn’t seem like a good idea at all. I’m a message receiver not a message sender. These people were going to have to work to have a completely annoying interview like cup of coffee with me before we realized it was a horrible match and moved on. And then – I hit what seemed like the Tinder Mother load. Older guy – 48 ish – handsome – lots of nice pics – dog included – seemingly cool house – and – one photo that was snapped on a movie premiere line. Yes! He’s in the business. I quickly swiped to the right and boom – it’s a match! He had already liked me. Joshua sprung into action. He immediately used one of this guys photos and did the most amazing bit of Google stalkery I have ever seen. He found out exactly who the guy is. Another writer! Yes! Everyone in the writer’s room told me I needed to write something to him first. He could actually be normal. I love that the biggest group of broken toys (writers) thinks another writer will be normal. Ha!! Oh god. What do I say? They offered their lines. “Just say hi”, “Say something about being a writer.” But I couldn’t say that because then he would know I google stalked him. Shit. I worked on a statement for a full twenty minutes and finally typed out – “Hi, I think you’re the first match I don’t need to meet at a police station.” Funny right? Wrong. Radio silence. And it’s been that way ever since. I’m not sure what kind of guy clicks on a girls picture and then ignores her incredibly clever text but this guy is one of those guys. Fuck him! Fuck Tinder! I shouted to no one. Great – another thing in life to make me feel like a loser – my own phone. So for now – I’m taking a Tinder break. I’ll let you guys know when I’m back on. And if you ladies are swiping through and see my writer – tell him he doesn’t know how good he almost had it. He could have been my Tinder Fella. It’s no fairy tale over here people but it sure beats trolling creepy dating sites.
I don’t know how it is where you people live, but lately dining out in Los Angeles has made me think that all the restaurants have banded together and decided I’m too fat and are now serving me portions they believe are the only size portions I should eat and in fact are making me share those portions with my friends. Every time I walk into a new restaurant in L.A. – which by the way is often because I’m a bougie bitch – I am told the same thing by my actress waitress (who I would really like to start acting like waitresses because if one more of them gives me some cute lip that she thinks is some sort of audition – we’re gonna have some fucking problems.) Anyway they all say the same thing – “it’s all small plates so you can share!” Okay – first of all – shouldn’t it be – it’s all giant plates the size of your head so you can share? Do you know how hard it is to cut one pea tendril steamed in kale juice with currants and apricots? I don’t get the small plates concept at all. There is not enough food on a small plate for me to eat let alone divide between the six people I’m dining with. (Don’t be judgy – I have friends) The whole small plates thing is taking over in Los Angeles to the point where the only place I can get a full sized plate of food – i.e. an actual piece of fish – is Denny’s – and while I love what they’ve done with the place over the years (nothing) – I’m not hungry enough to eat an entire Eggs Over My Hammy by myself. On the one hand, I order food like I buy shoes so I do enjoy tasting as much as possible on a menu when I first go to a new restaurant, but I’d like more than a spoonful of something that I then have to divide among friends. If there are more than two of you – you have to order two of everything. It’s a scam people!! Am I the only one seeing this?? I mean, I haven’t had an entire square of ravioli in years! I don’t even know what a full piece of toast looks like anymore and quite frankly the amount of small plates on my table at the end of a meal is making my table look like the kitchen and I’m on dish duty.
Oh how I long for a big plate of something, anything – other than salad which seems to be the only thing restaurants are willing to heap on your plate. This is like offering me free water. And don’t even get me started on the amount of water types I now have to choose from. Tap, filtered, sparkling, flavored through a squirrels ass – I mean – it’s water – stop it. If all of this is supposed to teach us about portion control it’s not working. I mean – it’s working while I’m at a restaurant and eat one quarter of a taco but the second I get home I’m trawling through the left side of the refrigerator or worse, I’m stopping at the supermarket on the way home and yelling “fuck it” as I throw open the freezer door and pull out the Jenni’s Ice Cream. (It’s the best if you haven’t had it – I recommend the salted caramel mixed with dark chocolate)
So – hello LA chefs – I’m hungry. Until you start changing things up on your menu’s and treating me like a nice jewish mother by greeting me the words “let me make you a nice plate” – I’m done dining with at your small plate establishments. I learned a long time ago in my yellow bedroom back in Staten Island when my friend wanted to borrow one of my favorite Barbie’s coolest outfits – I don’t like to share.
For more stories like this – or better than this if you hate this – check out my book!!
I was ten years old the first time I learned what it meant to be on the outside, to not be one of the cool kids having all the fun, to be the little girl who people said – “no don’t ask her to play – she’s not one of us.” It was the summer of 1971 and after years of successfully begging my parents, I was finally off to my very first sleep away camp – Indian Head – in Honesdale Pennsylvania. If you were a Jew in the 70’s – camp is where you went for two months every year. This seemed outrageous to my parents – to have a child go away for that long. Outrageous was also the cost of this adventure – something my parents told me they couldn’t afford. I believe it was 975 dollars for 8 weeks. Back then – me and all of my friends and their parents hung out at the Staten Island Swim Club – where we had a cabana and went every weekend. Nobody left for the summer to go to camp. I don’t have a snapshot from that time but it’s seared into my memory like a faded picture, swanky Jews sipping cocktails and smoking cigarettes and wearing the latest in swimwear while their kids learned to dive off the high board. In actuality it was kind of a shit show brokedown palace that served greasy hamburgers and warm sodas but to me it was everything. Eventually my parents decided that what we needed to do every summer was go to a place called “The Hamptons” and in 1971 they bought a cottage on the bay in Shinnecock which is near South Hampton. Now back then, the Hamptons was not the playground of the rich and famous – it was just the tip of Long Island filled with farmers and fisherman. There were no Kardashians, no film festivals, and miles of amazing beach. I wanted nothing to do with this hideousness. I wanted to be behind locked gates where there was a lake filled with frogs, bunk beds, moldy cubbies to put your clothes in – and hundreds of kids in captivity to play with every day. Finally in that summer of 1971 – I was off to IHC – which would become the home of some of my greatest memories of life and shape who I am today.
Indian Head was already a long standing tradition for many kids. They went every summer and had already formed life long bonds and cliques before I ever got there. It took about 24 hours for me to realize I had made the biggest mistake of my life. I hated camp. I wanted to go home. No one liked me. I was not part of the cool crowd. A girl I had actually known from home – I’ll call her Judy because that was her name – had been there for a couple of years before me – and she convinced all the other girl campers in my bunk – I think we were called Utes because everyone had Indian names – to be mean to me. No one talked to me. No one included me in their girl talks. No one picked me to be on their team. I was ostracized. About a week in I was miserable and then came the real blow – I broke my wrist playing tetherball and was slapped with a cast. It was the cast that broke the nerdy Jewish girls back. I was officially a dork. I called my parents and begged them to pick me up. They did the smartest thing they’ve ever done – told me no – and told me to stick it out. I did. I don’t remember what the turning point was – it may have been the day I realized my cast made me the most powerful tetherball player on the East Coast – by using it to smash the ball that thing went flying around a pole – but one day – I was in. And that day was the greatest day of my life. I went to Indian Head for ten years. I went on to be a counselor, A Sing Leader and the youngest Color War General they ever had. Now I know most of you have no idea what this is but it was special. We had a boys camp and a girls camp that were separated by an M.D. line. (Mason Dixon) We would go on raids at night and sneak into the boys bunk and make out with our boyfriends. Yes I had a boyfriend at ten – his name was Peter Ezersky – and his parents owned the camp. Kaching! I knew how to pick a winner back then. There was a canteen you would go to for socials (dancing with boys) and buy candy with a coupon book. There was a lake with water skiing and boating and every kind of sport imaginable was played every day. There was a craft shack and waiters dorms and a nurses bunk and the big house where the owners slept and dined. We went on hikes and went camping and sat around the campfire telling ghost stories and eating smores. When you were a special camper or it was your birthday you got called up to the flagpole and everyone cheered for you. You also got a slip of paper hidden under your mystery meat that said “Happy Birthday Baby” from the cook that entitled you to something special from the kitchen. There was Bug Juice and singing and Friday night Services and Square Dancing and plays and musicals and oh god I still want to go there every summer and I still have magical dreams about Indian Head. There was always something wonderful to do even if you hated it. If I could I would go there tomorrow and be a counselor for the summer.
Now eventually I went on to join the coolest clique around and we went on to bully quite a few nerdy girls when I was 11 through 13. I still feel guilty about these moments and I still have an affinity for women who are not deemed cool as I grow older. It’s amazing how quickly you forget you were one of them when you finally make it into the clique.
This week lots of kids on the east coast boarded buses and headed off to IHC – still running – still in the same spot it was. On the fourth of July there was always fireworks and singing around the lake. It was fucking amazing. I always loved the fourth of July because of this.
Yesterday it took me the whole day to even realize it was the 4th of July. I’m home working on a script and didn’t even think about making a plan for the day. I looked at pictures of everyone I knew doing something special and fabulous and I thought – fuck – I’m back to being one of the dorks. I didn’t get one single invitation to do one single thing on the fourth of July. I went out to dinner with my best friend and he said he had the same kind of day. We both realized we were “on the outs” and after a lot of discussion we realized – we kind of put ourselves there – because that’s where we wanted to be on this particular day – July 4th 2014 – with each other – having a great meal – listening to the fireworks explode behind us – celebrating our Independence from being people who cared what others think. But it was because of camp all those years ago that I still long to have a giant group of friends hang out by a lake – or an ocean – or a house – or a bunk – or wherever – like I did years later in the Hamptons with summer shares and we vowed to each other to have some kind of summer house next year in Malibu or somewhere. We’re going to start our own cool kids camp. If you’re nice to me – I may let you come.
More stories from my silly life are available: