Friday, December 23, 2011

Dear Santa

Dear Santa,


Well you’ve done good.

While last year I asked for a man to be wrapped and placed under my tree…I realize it took you a bit longer to send him to me. I knew it when I met him that he was your belated gift because one of our first dates was…where else? Under a tree in a forest wrapped up in many blankets.

So I have to say thank you Santa. You sent me the person I have been looking for. He’s not annoyed that I write about men and dates…(in fact, I think he kinda enjoys it.) When I took him to Tiffany’s…he made a purchase in an instant. No doe eyes, no looking at him longingly. He just did it. (I know Santa…where did you find him? I’m assuming Mrs. Claus had something to do with it…after all, I have learned from her…a way to a man’s heart is always through a plate of cookies.)

But honestly Santa…I think the reason this relationship is working is because this man can make me laugh at pretty much anything. (If not, I’m usually just laughing at myself.) But even when we have arguments, we discuss things like adults, admit our faults and nagging ways, and move through all conflict resolution like adults…(maybe I really did need all that time.)

You gave me hope, Santa. You let me find happiness even when I started to doubt the process. (But I will say…dating lots of different people has inspired so many stories for my novels!)

So Santa, this year I’ll tell you what I would like….I’d like you to spread the love and set up a couple friends of mine. I have been very good (I know you have been watching) and I think my friends deserve love too. So wrap up a couple of well mannered men and stick them under their trees, and if they aren’t there on Christmas morning…I’ll tell them to do some tree hugging.

Because it worked for me.

So Santa, I will see you bright and early Saturday night while I share a cozy fireplace moment with my BF. Then you can come down the chimney, we’ll share a mocha, and chat about who has been naughty and nice -- Maybe partake in a glass of sherry before you take off for the night. Then my Stud Muffin and I will look up into the sky and see your flickering sleigh ride across our night sky…and we will reflect at how truly we lucky to have found each other.

Thank you again Santa… You’re the best. And MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Love,

Heidi

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Street Walking (And not like that..head out of gutter please.)


I’m usually not the one to wake up early on a Sunday, don my walking shoes, and hit the cold streets of Hollywood…but on Sunday, December 4th, I joined KCET (a local Los Angeles Community based TV Station) viewers on the Art Deco Tour of Hollywood as part of their new program “The SoCal Adventure” (formally called, “That Something Special”).

My M.O. in Hollywood is usually sipping drinks at swanky bars, but on this particular morning, I was looking at the outside of one of my favorite eateries Beso (Hi Eva Longoria), in a whole new light…as a preservationist, as a student of architecture…and quite frankly, as a tourist in my home town.

It was a lively bunch as our host, John Thomas, the President of the Art Deco Society, had us zig zaging the streets, learning new terms like “chervons”; “sunbursts” and “flora” motifs. We were asked to look for “water spouts” and “Egyptian influences.” We learned about the design moderne style (that would be Beso’s look) and we walked past well preserved store fronts, and those that had been abandoned for some time and needed some serious TLC.

A highlight was looking at the Wilcox Library which had just received a fresh coat of paint, and of course, the Egyptian theater which is now run by American Cinematheque which has a great calendar of events coming up. http://www.americancinematheque.com/

But most importantly, at this time of year when my feet are usually sore from my mall haul, I was glad to participate in something a bit more cultural, hang with freinds, and get a new view of Hollywood…or maybe not new, but I’m able to view it with new eyes or appreciation.  As I drove away from Hollywood, I sat at a light in front of the famous Wiltern Theater (at Wilshire and Western) and wouldn't you know what was looking back at me?  Sunbursts, water fountain motifs...and lots of lots of chevrons.  I secretly chuckled to myself...the art deco influences were all around me and I never even stopped to notice them before. 
For more information on the Art Deco Society of Los Angeles: adsla.org
For more information on KCET…visit KCET.org
Stay tuned…I’m heading to more events soon.



Wilcox Library



Out in front of the Pantages Theater

Hollywood and Vine...Apartment Building in the Art Deco Style


Looking up at the sights.


Our guide John Thomas

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Dog People

I know I’m going to offend a few friends here….but let me tell you something. Many of you aren’t opening your eyes. You are wagging your tails.

I have more than one girlfriend who for some reason or another decided to get a dog in their mid-30’s. Once this happened, they stopped dating men, and started dating their dog. They were no longer available to go to dinner or drinks, suddenly, they had to go home and be with their pooch.

Just the other night, a bunch of friends were planning to get together because our friend Chris was visiting from New York. One friend Tessa had just adopted a new puppy. When the other women saw Chris at the wine bar, we asked “where is Tessa?” It didn’t take long for us all to bring up the stories of fellow girlfriends who went down the doggie path.

Now I have tons of girlfriends who wax poetically about how they get out more and our social because of their dogs. (They even make “dates” at the dog park.) That’s wonderful, but how many events have you cancelled because you have to run home to Fido, when you could potentially have been set up, met, or bumped into a potential date? (And I’m not going to ask you how many dates you’ve cancelled, when you had dates, because you know the answer.)

I’ve even had friends lose their jobs and get dogs, and now think, “I can’t possibly get a job, what will Rex do all day?” (Answer: lay around, sleep, and wait for you to come home.)

Single girls – listen to me – think before you get a dog. Sure they give you unconditional love. Sure, they are cute, cuddle, keep you warm at night and they “listen to you”. Now think about how many times you have used them as your excuse not to go somewhere? Can’t do that weekender to Vegas because you have Spot.

Yep…it’s hindering you and your dating life.

Now, I am not a dog hater. I love dogs. When my dad died, my mom got a dog. Best companion of her life. I’ve been a “step parent” to many pooches and I always include my friends dogs when I’m addressing Christmas cards. It’s the single girls who think they are always available, but can’t hear themselves state how many times they have used the “got to get home to feed/walk the dog” excuse.

It’s a problem.

I’m not stating for you to send your dog to a shelter, I’m asking you to make better arrangements. Find a neighbor to feed your pet when you get the last minute invite to watch Monday night football. Or hell, if “he” calls. Stop using the dog excuse.

If you are single and thinking about getting a dog, this is your warning…your friends will get very resentful toward your cute cuddly furball if you start choosing the dog before them. Not to mention, you will not be as available for dating.

Now if you are the age of my mother, fine, get a dog…they are loving companions and I know she doesn’t want to get married or is even thinking about going on a date. But even my mother has a back up plan when she gets the last minute invite (she calls my brother).

But you ladies in your 20’s; 30’s and beyond…unless you have back-up help…woof woof.

What would you rather have in your bed every night?

(And no this rule doesn’t apply to cats…because cat owners know, you can leave a cat home alone for a weekend with food, water and a litter box.)

HC

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Vision Boards

If you are like me, you have some sort of vision board with lots of cut out photos and word phrases pasted to poster board, tucked in the back of your closet collecting dust just waiting for the universe to absorb it and make it a reality.

It didn’t work, did it?

I read an article from Martha Beck awhile back where she stated that while we envision things, we need to put forth “truthful admonishments” we can actually get.

So the really hot guy holding two glasses of champagne, in front of a Mercedes on a secluded beach isn’t what I should be envisioning?

Apparently not. Rats.

Her point was everyone does their vision boards wrong. They have “dream boards” but these dreams couldn’t actually be realities.

But, but, but, no really, I’m envisioning a really hot guy, making me breakfast in bed –and I’m not kidding.

How does one really create the life they want with a vision board?

I decided to dig a bit deeper and invited my really cool, intuitive, friend Bekah over for a deep vision session to help me with my really attainable goal – a good boyfriend.

Bekah told me about a group she belonged to called “The Goal Group”. These goal seekers would come together and create vision boards and then they would quiz each other with a list of things to do to achieve them.

So, being snarky, I asked Bekah, what if someone put on their vision board something totally unattainable like winning the lottery. Bekah in her goal orientated mind, said to me, “we’ll, I’d tell you to actually buy some lottery tickets, maybe join a group who buys lots of lottery tickets, and maybe get a better job to afford all of your lottery ticket purchases, and don’t forget to take these purchases as a tax deduction.” I knew Bekah was smart, but really? That actually sounds about right.

So then Bekah and I started talking about men and dating and what we “envisioned” for ourselves. I know the guy on the white horse is not showing up anytime soon, but the attainable guy, who might not have the perfect ripped abs, but truly loves me, might be around the corner.

“Great, what are you going to do to meet him?” she said.

Tell everyone I’m still single. Look for this guy, and tell him I'm open for a relationship.

Bingo.

So you know what…I’ve done just that. And I’m not going to tell you right now if it’s worked, but I will let you know I’ve stopped online dating the masses to focus on my goals.

Vision board, goal list…it’s all tucked under my bed…and it’s working.

Now, if only magazines would have middle-aged men, few extra pounds in the mid-section, who have lots of love to give for me... to put on my board….well, then I might have something.

I’ll keep you posted.

HC

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Saw It At The Movies


“The more you hide your feelings for someone, the more you fall for them.” @thenoteboook

I was sent this tweet by a recent date.

So I texted him, “What are you hiding?”

He didn’t respond to that. Typical.

The quote made me fondly remember those days on the playground when the boy you really liked you’d punch or mock in front of your peers. Indeed…we always had a crush on them…but we’d never tell them. The more you said “eyyyyh…he’s gross” the more we wrote in our journals (in private) how dreamy he actually was.

Recently my pre-teen niece came to visit me and we got to discuss…what else? Boys. I took her to see the film “One Day” (which I highly recommend bytheway…and yes, I also read the book.) My niece has had a crush on a boy for awhile now…and well…he’s just ‘not that into her’. After the film, we discussed the men in our lives. Her guy is a good “friend” of hers who only ever wants to be “her friend” and subsequently dates tons of other girls. So I told her he hasn’t figured out that the girl in front of him is a great catch. But he will…and it will probably be too late.

This is the same message played out in the film. These seemingly “best friendships” can last for years…and finally the guy clues in that his “friend” is actually perfect for him.

But how long do we need to sit around and wait for that to happen? And why do we hide our feelings? Why don’t we just tell guys we like them? Is it true that if we hide our feelings, we will fall harder for them?

I fondly remember telling a guy I’d been crushing on for months (could have been years) that I liked him. Sure I built up this reveal in my head that he would longingly look into my eyes and tell me that he loved me too. I didn’t get the answer I wanted. But you know what I did get? Peace! Sure it hurt, and we did remain friends (and are still friends to this day). But if I held my feelings in and pined for him any longer …wouldn’t I be frustrated? And wouldn’t I have closed myself to other potential dates? How long was I to hold my true feelings in?

Now this guy has gone on, got married and divorced, and together we have changed as people. Do I still have a crush on him? I will not lie…if he came back into my life on a romantic level, I’d be very tempted. But I also figure…he had his chance and he gave me his answer.

In a totally related tale, I had a friend call me up the other day to tell me that she was engaged. After I picked myself off the floor, I got down to business, who was this guy, and why haven’t I met him? Same story, they were friends in college, they held feelings for each other, but both were technically unavailable. Through the years they remained friends…blah, blah blah. On a recent “catch up phone call” my friend finally revealed to her male friend, “I had such a crush on you in college.” And bam. Couple months later, they are engaged. They both had held in their feelings, and once all was revealed they fell hard and fast in love.

Guess I should start holding my feelings in a bit more. But as a romance writer, that’s a little hard for me.

Such dilemmas.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Type Setting

I hate the question: “What’s your type?”

I honestly don’t know the answer. (Um…. breathing?)

I will admit, I try and be a bit vague in my blog...writing stuff like “my type is one that is into me.”

And then I got complaints: “You shouldn’t be so vague.” (Moi?)

So I have been digging a bit deeper. What attracts me? What do I want in a mate? And of course…what’s my type?

I’m a big believer in chemistry. You meet someone and you just sort of know. Of course, there are things down the line that they reveal and you learn more and more about their habits, both the good and the bad…but you know pretty early on if someone is going to be a match for you. So how do we quantify that as a “type”? And should we have a type?

If I had to narrow it down to the physical I’d say: bigger bear type guy; plus or minus 5 years from my age; good hygiene; and has a full set of teeth (you’d be amazed at how many guys don’t regularly go to the dentist).

For the emotional stuff: A listener (such a challenge I tell you); laughs often; surprisingly helpful (i.e. carries a case of books to my book signing, and then brings me coffee the way I like it); likes a challenge and enjoys figuring things out.

And then there is: Works in a job he likes (and doesn’t complain about it every five seconds); not a drug addict, not a criminal, likes his family…etc, etc.

Recently, I was looking through some profiles on an online dating site and ran across the profile of someone I dated a while back. So I gave his profile a read. I can see why we were matched. Based on his profile, we were perfect for each other. But here’s what he forgot to add: “Mr. X doesn’t really want to be in a relationship. He’s still bitter from his divorce and just wants sex every once in a while, and might occasionally take you out for a meal if he can make the time.”

So if online dating doesn’t work…I’m thinking of trying something new. Enter my sister.

A couple months ago my sis told me that she is “putting together a team” to find her a good man. Her thought was maybe her friends know the secret formula since she can’t seem to find Mr. Right on her own. So off she went and was set up on a number of blind dates. The first guy “her team” introduced her to was a nudist (and he wanted their first date to be at a nudist colony…ah awkward!). But my sis went on the date (fully clothed) and it wasn’t a good fit. They were just too different. (Oh really? Um…Trust me, he needs to wear some shorts to family Sunday dinner. This much I know.)

Next she was set up with a professional pilot who had a yacht. (Sounds good, right?) BUT…there was a divide. The pilot/yacht owner was 12 years older than my sis, and it was a decade of difference. Diverse musical tastes, different stages of their careers, and then he said “I’m too old for you.” (Apparently he dated lots of women who had lied about their age, but when my sister showed up looking her real age …he knew she wasn’t into him. And he was right.)

“I’m not giving up on my team,” my sister proclaimed, “but I am adding new members.” Good attitude sis. So I thought I too would put together my own team.

My Team: “What’s your type?”

Me: “You tell me.”

Oh god, what did I just do? I was vague again!!! But my friend Marcy was first out of the gate and after photo approval on both sides…my first date was set.

Mike* (not his real name) pre-date stats told to me via Marcy: Nice guy. Works in Finance. Divorced. One adult child. Lived in a house in a nice neighborhood. Check, check and check. “Okay, set me up.”

After our first date I learned: Lives with his brother (aka doesn’t pay rent); doesn’t talk with his kid (ever); works in finance for a car dealership…and he invaded my personal space in that touchy feely way all through dinner.

So what I thought was my type, clearly wasn’t. And I’ve learned…it’s hard to just go off photos (and Marcy.)

“I’ve got a great guy for you,” proclaimed another team member. This time I didn’t get a photo but was only told he was a writer. (If you are a regular reader of my blog…you know, I usually don’t date other creative types for fear, two creatives make a wrong.) I reluctantly went on the date.

And yes, it was one of the best dates of my life. Conversation for hours, fascinating guy, tons in common, oh and cute attractive and “my type” – what do you know?…it worked! (Or did it?)

After dating a while it’s always good to be realistic with what your type is and how it is ever changing. Tell your friends what you’re honestly looking for and be willing to be set up. (But, I will add: my type will be fully clothed on a first date.)

Bottom line: It’s okay to have a type…but its also nice to go “off type” because really you never know.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

E-Manners

What happened to mailing a thank you? What happened to the courtesy phone calls? I know how archaic these things are. But I miss them. At first our communication was replaced by email, and now…all communication has been reduced to texts, pings, and blips.

In this age where there is some new platform popping up every six months that I have to manage – who has time to communicate with all of them? I could spend my days on twitter, facebook, scoville, foursquare, google+. Its nuts. Add dating to the mix…and you have a recipe for disaster.

I have had more than one guy I was dating break up with me via text. Were they afraid to call? An email too hard to compose? A text? It’s just too easy.

I have never been one of those people who go out and buy the latest electronic device right when they come out. After all, you are reading from the gal who once proclaimed that “if I got a cell phone it would make me too accessible. I’ll call people when I’m home and near a phone. Who needs to be that available?” Apparently I need to be “open” 24/7.
After I left my celebrity assistant position, I needed a detox from my cell phone. I’ll be available when I can be available.

Which brings me to my latest issue. Recently I went on a lovely five-hour drinks date. Nice guy, and thought we clicked, after all, we were out for five hours and he was interesting. I knew I had a busy schedule coming up so we were trying to plan our second date, but when we couldn’t figure out a date, I said “text me.”

Big mistake. During a texting frenzy, we had made plans for a Monday night date. On Sunday, he sent me a text that said, “Thinking of you ” – no question, no change of plans…but a nice “Thinking of you” with a smiley modicum.

That particular Sunday, I was babysitting for a friend whose husband had fallen ill and she needed to take him to the hospital. My date didn’t know this, but then I didn’t think I needed to respond to a “thinking of you” smiley face. I continued in “kid mode” and played a game of monopoly.

Two hours later, my date had sent me another message.

“I sent u a txt message earlier. Seems like your busy…on a Sunday night…playing the dating game. I get more attention from someone overseas than u. Sorry. Good luck, I’m going to pass on dinner tomorrow night. Hope your other guys r real 4 u.”

You’ve got to be kidding me? (Was my first reaction.) And then I got pissed. Did you ask me a question? Did you seek a response? No…you said you were “thinking of me”. Did you want a response of “um, busy with Monopoly and a seven year old”? And why did I need to respond at all?

There are plenty of times I forget my cellphone. Especially when I’m writing at the library for example. I can’t make phone calls at the library, and I need to focus on work. I’ll call/text back when I get in my car.

In this example, yes, it was a Sunday night, but really, who needs to be accessible all the time? Doctors? Maybe. But last time I checked…nothing is “life threatening” in my line of work. What if I was at a movie? I think it is utterly RUDE (with a capital R) to text in a movie theater.
Needless to say, I think I dodged a bullet with that guy. He did tell me he was sorry and that he thought that in this day and age of e-dating…people responded more frequently. And my bottom line is this… Don’t instantly judge someone by their lack of response. Don’t accuse them of having a full date card. Allow yourself to always have time for yourself and detox from electronics from time to time.

And… NEVER turn on your phone in a movie, live theater, reading or any type of live performance. I don’t care who you are dating.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Sleeper

Ever been with a control freak? (Yeah, I usually don’t give them a second date either….but) What if he was a “sleeper” creep?

Not long ago I went out with a seemingly normal guy. His details: Well mannered, good job, home owner, divorced, had a dog…. I interpret these things as: loves mom, not cheap, knows about investments, broken in, and capable of love.

What I soon learned was, he wanted full control. (How do I tell him “No one puts Heidi in a corner?” Clearly…he’s not reading my blog.)

I was introduced to The Sleeper from a friend of mine so I could always ask her the important questions when something would arise. First issue happened on our first date. We went to a The Hungry Cat, a lovely restaurant in Hollywood. It’s exactly what you’d expect. He was trying to impress me with his culinary knowledge (little did he know I have produced shows for The Food Network, and I knew the chef Suzanne Goin) but of course he wanted to order for me. “We’ll start with the caviar, and then have the salad of baby lettuces, then the Alaskan Halibut …” He ordered the most expensive things, which isn’t what I would have ordered if allowed…I was kinda eye-ing the burger. But he insisted… “You will love it Heidi!” Whatever!

Conversation flowed the first date (as it should) …What do you do? Why are you single? How long have you been in LA? Blah blah blah.

I will admit, I was charmed. His answers were on par with what I liked, and he was interesting. So I put the “ordering for me” on the back burner.

Then he took me to a basketball game, my second ever Laker game. Pointing out players, telling me moves, and where guys went to college… blah blah blah. Again, fine date and a good game.

We did this for a few more dates, and then I opted to invite him up to my place. Now I was in control. He was on my turf. With options of chicken, beef and seafood stacked in my fridge as well as a plethora of fresh veggies I picked up from local farm stands, I was prepared to impress him with my culinary knowledge…for once.

No joke: he walked in and said “I went on Yelp and found five different restaurants I’d like to try…what are you in the mood for?” I was deflated but went for seafood (and I knew his days were numbered.)

I phoned my friend the next day, “Isn’t he great?” she boasted through the phone.

“Yes…exactly what I’m looking for…” except, he does everything for me and treats me like he’s known me for years. We’ve only been on a couple dates.

One thing I always tell my dates is… I have mastered the art of being single, but I need some help with being a couple. So bear with me…I’m new at relationships. I told this to The Sleeper, but I don’t think he really listened to that. He was too busy planning our next date and the date after that. Wild locations, new restaurants, museums, movies to see, urgh. Here me…I want to get to know you…not visit the latest five starred reviews on Yelp.

We were at The Ahmanson House off Pacific Coast Hwy when I finally blurted out that I wanted to meet his dog. “That’s too personal,” he told me. Say what? It’s a dog. And who was I? Chopped liver you just wanted to wine and dine all over town? Clue number two…he didn’t want me in his personal space.

My date was fine when I was out at nice restaurants and he could show me a good time, but allow him to see his personal side and he shut up as tight as a clam shell. Then he asked me, “do you always want to work? What if you had kids?” Ah yes, the kid question. I love writing, I love blogging, writing is in my soul…tell me I can’t write, would be a horror…afterall I can do it anywhere at anytime…I don’t need a desk job to work.

So I answered fairly and honestly, “I will always be a writer even if have children.”

Well…you would have thought hell froze over.

“I don’t want the mother of my children to have work stress.” In my head I’m thinking, and you make how much? What part of…I work for myself and have flexible hours do you not understand?

Then as he ordered my coffee drink for me, I started to piece it all together…I am with a control freak. It wasn’t that obvious at first, but he definitely wanted to fit me in his box.

And again, no one puts Heidi in a corner.

We broke up a week later.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Turf War

Ever walked in a bar and been given the evil eye?

I was told about a bar in Palm Springs, not for its chic cool hipster vibe (you can get that at The Parker) I was told I must go to this bar because of the serious old lady turf war going on. My friend explained to me that it was stuck in the rat pack heyday yet everyone was now eighty and these women circle any male meat that walked in the door.

I couldn’t wait to go.

My sister and her friend *Karen joined me. Now, Karen likes her men a bit older, I will not lie, she’s a beautiful blonde in her um, let’s say late forties, and works as a massage therapist. My sister “the best damn real estate agent ever” was on a rebound, and me, well…I’m always looking for a man.

Palm Springs has its own sense of style. It’s not all khakis and top siders from the Hamptons, nor is it bohemian of say Malibu, or bling-ed out tight t-shirts and designer everything of the OC. Palm Springs residents wear golf clothing and flip flops…year round (unless you are gay…then everything is bright and extra fabulous.) Please note: they also have the best Chicos, Ann Taylor, Talbots, Izod, Coldwater Creek shops one will ever visit.

We were doomed from the outset as we all wore low cut, tight fitting dresses/pants, and heels.

The three of us walked into The Nest as if we were starting a new girl group (I’m channeling Beyonce here folks). And then it happened. The stare down.

Now, let me describe The Nest. It was last decorated circa 1973; smells of stale beer and sweet and sour mix; and has the same bar stools my parents purchased (in 1973). The walls were covered with dark paneling (of course) with low hung lighting fixtures covered in soot from the days when Californians could smoke inside. The tunes were a mix of Tom Jones to Def Leopard (which I’ll admit sort of threw me). The staff were aptly named Bob and Ethel…and the patrons. Oh let’s see…

First, when we walked in, the men all turned their um, wheel chairs, and set their eyes on us. No one was under the age of seventy. And we were the new girls in town. Vroom vroom. Those walkers started heading right for us and I’m sure would have pinch my ass had given the chance. (Yeah Grandpa…that worked in the 60’s…today its called harassment.) The women…well there was Three Week Old Beehive; Making New Lips from Lip Liner; and Walking Stick Shoved Up Her Ass in one corner. In the other was One Step Away from Tracheotomy; Leatherface; and I Go Bunco for Bunco. At the bar sat: Bad Face Lift Circa 1985; Muffin Top in Pajama Jeans.

All eyes beaming on us and not in a good way. Oh crap.

Now, I’m not the type to boast and say I was hot shit at a bar or anything, but with this crowd, we were frickin hot, and this was going to be a riot, “You need help with your oxygen tank honey” – yeah, game on bitches.

We (I’m now calling us Destiny’s Child) get a table and Karen gives a low bend showing her strong toned legs, and ability to dab droll from many angles. Then we wait and wait and wait and wouldn’t you know…we don’t get any service. Apparently Ethel and Bob have a “no tart” policy and want to keep the regular gals in the sticky stools.

From across the bar we get a couple questions tossed at as, “Where you girls from?” and the like from the male geezer crowd. With a couple of batted eyelashes we let them know we “just moved here” – a lie…but so much more fun. My sis finally has to get up and head over to the bar to order up vodka-tonics with orange twists because Bob and Ethel aren’t about to budge to serve us. Beehive instantly sizes sis up and makes a few remarks to her other bridge partners. Unfortunately, I don’t think Leatherface or Facelift could hear her try and make fun of us. Honey our clothes are from boutique shops off Melrose…not in an air conditioned mall.
We were only at The Nest for our one drink and had a lovely chat with some of the gentlemen. But it was the look on the women’s faces as we entered on their turf that was priceless.

Oh and while I’d like to say Karen ran off with 2nd Pacemaker and lived happily ever after…that didn’t happen. We had our drinks, got the evil stares and laughed our asses off while dipping in the pool. So if you are ever in Palm Springs, and you want to give the local ladies a run for their money, dress up and head to The Nest…tell them Heidi sent you.

I love a good turf war, don’t you?

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Moment of Weakness

You are alone on a Friday/Saturday/Sunday…hell any night of the week. Making your single serving meal. Maybe have a glass of wine, or two. There is nothing on TV. And all of your friends have lives. Except you.

You cave.

You call/text/send email to him.

You instantly regret the act.

You just had a moment of weakness.

I know you just wanted to see how he was doing because you left everything on good terms. He’s your friend now.

Okay, stop kidding yourself. Anything he will say will not be good. You will analyze every word, letter, sentence structure. Um…you are pathetic. Like me.

Recently my friend *Claire did such a thing. She knew the answer. She had heard through the grapevine that her ex was already online and dating a new girl. For as many “you dodged a bullet” pep talks I could give my friend, I knew she was hurting. She just wanted to know what he was doing…or did she really?

Claire is like all of us single gals. We want them to hurt but we can’t move on until we hear the truth. He has actually moved on and does he still miss us.

I have many exes (do I need to remind you how many?) who read my blog who are utterly confused with how many men I am actually dating at a time. (You sweetheart are the only one…I swear…she says crossing her fingers and toes).

I’m an utter mystery. And so are men.

I simply stopped trying to figure them out.

I have had so many moments of weakness it would make my feminist lit professor blush. Here’s the thing, we all just want to feel wanted and maybe even loved. I have said it many times…it’s all about the chase. When someone really likes us…they chase us. When they don’t. We obsess over the reason why not. Then we sit home alone slowly going mad. And have moments of weakness.

Oprah moment: Here’s what I know for sure… Men don’t think of us nearly as much we do them. In fact, he doesn’t even think about it until we bring it up.

Now, a weak moment isn’t just in those first weeks/months after a break up. The littlest thing can bring him back into our conscience. In fact, just the other day while sitting around having cocktails with my girlfriends, I nonchalantly asked about a guy I went to college with (moons ago). Then I got his number and called him. Thankfully he didn’t answer, but that was a close call.
Calling men in these moments of weakness all lead to men thinking one thing: We are desperate. (Borderline stalkers too.)

It’s true.

So re-examine that message you are planning on sending. Now imagine him reading your letter to his guy friends over a beer.

What do you see? Right. They all think you are a nut.

Look, I know you are not a desperate nut. I know you just miss him. He was your friend who you spent a lot of time with over the months and years. You miss him. But be strong.

If he’s moved on, you should move on.

He will not answer all of your questions. He will not let you in on his new love life. And most importantly he will not tell you WHY you two can’t remain friends right now. He might be hurting too.

Be strong not weak for you are a great catch. (I’m scanning my rolodex now to see who I can set you up with.)

HC

*Claire is not her real name.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Work Date Dilemma

As the summer sun starts to heat up, so does my party schedule. For the perpetually single girl, this brings up the all important: Who will I bring as my date? As I’ve been working in Hollywood since graduating college, there is a blur of work friends and colleagues. I work with many of my friends, and the circle of who knows who is relatively small. Let’s face facts, people talk, so bringing a date to an event, he will inevitably be dubbed “your boyfriend” whether you want him to be or not.

Recently I was invited to a red carpet premiere and was scared to death. Did I walk the carpet with my new guy? (Literally we had been on two dates.) I opted to go solo and had a horrible time. Everyone was coupled up but me and I was utterly bored. Why couldn’t I take the new guy? Did I not want him to meet my friends? Did I think it was too much, too soon? Would he not gel with my friends?

When I first start dating someone, I’m internally thinking of my upcoming schedule and in my head seeing if I could take them to my next set of events.

Here’s some upcoming events: Charity event (will he be pressured to bid on silent auction items?); Babies first birthday (babies and men…no way); Malibu beach party (way too many perfect bodies, and mine isn’t one of them); Cousin’s wedding (ah, my family will be there – no way in hell); Writer’s Convention (he reads the sports page and that’s about it…he’ll be bored); Game night with a bunch of couples (maybe, but they will size us up…he might get the wrong impression); Wine tasting/cocktail party with work friends (maybe).

I’ve decided that married people do not understand how difficult it is for single people to go to these events. They have married their partner and hell or high water it is generally understood that he or she must follow tow and attend events as a couple.

I’ve gotten quite used to going to events solo for fear of the guy thinking we were a couple. (Again, once someone sees you with someone, they assume he is your “boyfriend” until you explain he’s just a friend, he’s gay, or he dumped you later on when he doesn’t show up to the next event.) I’ve always thought men thought the same thing as your friends -- if you take them to an event then I must “really” like him and want him to be “my boyfriend”. But honestly, that’s not always the case.

Can’t I just take you to an event because I need a date? And aren’t we dating?

Back in March I went to a series of fun Oscar parties with my manager. I am NOT dating him. (Repeat, we are not dating.) But I went to several parties with him as my date because I knew he’d know people and could, I dunno, sell my screenplays in the process! I can’t tell you how many of my colleagues asked me if we were a couple. It was as if I was doing my own damage control on the dating scene – “He’s my manager!” (And for the record, I love my manager -- I’m just not dating him.) Why did I take him over another guy I was actually dating? Probably because I knew my manager would push me to talk to business people far more than a “non-pro” date.

But I learned a big lesson: I can’t always go to events with my manager, or best friend, or gay friend, or whoever -- It’s time to actually take a real date. And that brings me back to the red carpet premiere…why didn’t I take the new guy?

Here’s the thing: I am not easily impressed. I’ve done an amazing amount of “cool” things in my lifetime. I’ve been around the world, sailed on yachts, dined at five star restaurants, and have stayed in serious luxury accommodations. So if a guy wants to tell me about his sports car and the amount his Rolex watch is…great. But I’m not overly impressed. (I also think it’s foolish for the amounts of money one can shell out for all these luxuries to um, try and impress women.)

So I guess when I’m inviting a date to a celebrity filled charity event, it’s as if I’m pulling up in my Mercedes – and I don’t want them to think I’m trying to impress them. I’m not…I just want a date. And maybe that’s what I’m grappling with…do I look like a snobby Hollywood girl if I’m taking them to a wrap party for a friends movie?

So what do I do? Do I keep taking my manager or do I go out on the limb and bring the new guy?

I guess there is no real answer here. Just a summation to get married, because then my partner will be forever forced to attend painfully boring red carpet events and he can become “Hollywood jaded” like me.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Show Your Flaws

I was chatting with a friend of mine. She was frustrated. Yet another guy had dumped her. “I don’t get it. I have it all - a house, good credit, a nice car, and I’m fucking hot.”

While Grace* is correct about her many great attributes, what she didn’t realize is everyone might not want to be the “perfect girl”, people can relate more to a few flaws. Even your ex.

I used to fall into this trap. I’d go on the first date and talk about myself. I’d wax poetic about how fabulous I am. Let me tell you…it never worked. Men don’t want to hear my success. They wanted to know my flaws. So I learned to be humble.

I also practice humility in my writing. Recently, my editor told me “Your character is just too perfect and the story is a ‘the dream scenario’ -- who can relate to that? Tell me how if felt when he didn’t call the next day.”

I got it instantly.

When you let down the “try to impress them” walls, a real and honest person can emerge.

So I changed my tactics (dating and writing, that is). Found my voice to be relatable on all levels. I’m not impressed easily, and in fact it’s actually a turn off when I’m with the name dropper, financial stats giver, and the flashy car driver who reveals these things on a first date. Sure these things will eventually come up…but be humble. Even though Grace* self proclaimed herself as “super hot” -- I wasn’t crying for her when she got dumped, god knows there will be another guy in the wings soon.

Bottom line: If two people put up their “fabulous” fronts….how do they really get to know each other? I know I’m not perfect. For if I was, I’d have a man by now. But I’m humble and human…and of course, I have lots of flaws.

*Grace is not her real name.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Color My World

If there were a crowd of hipsters at a club, I’d be the one in a bright colored dress in the middle of the dance floor.
I have always chosen the rosy path and live my life with a glass half full. Sure I own a black dress, but its polka dotted and I wear it with five-inch hot pink heels.

When it comes to wardrobe: I am not boring.

I think I was around twenty two when I started to develop my own sense of style. Fresh out of college (and a wardrobe straight from The Gap) I was working as a Development Executive for a production company and one of the VP’s (Nancy) always came in wearing these brightly colored sundresses. The other executives had perfect designer suits tailored to their bodies, but not Nancy. She’d breeze into the office in colorful florals, dizzying prints, and a cornucopia of relaxed fabrics.

I thought she was the coolest. When she had a big network meeting, she didn’t care. She wore her sundresses and always sold her projects. There was no “dress for success” attitude, she formed her own demeanor and executives always thought she was so comfortable and relaxed and they wanted to emulate Nancy too.

When it came time to pitch my first project to the big TV Network executives, I didn’t have the confidence to wear something so funky as Nancy. So I went out and purchased a (ahem) boring Jones New York suit. It was awkward and ill fitting. Needless to say, I was uncomfortable and the project didn’t sell.

I finally got up the guts to approach Nancy in the break room and ask her where she shopped…. “Polkadots and Moonbeams,” she returned. I went the next day to the small little hipster joint on 3rd Avenue near the Beverly Center and purchased my first “Nancy-esque” sundress and it all started…forming my sense of style.

Now I have nothing against the staple duds one finds at J. Crew and Ann Taylor. I have a few of their staples mixed into my wardrobe, but it’s the hunt to find something original that really makes my heart go pitter pat.

This sense of style has continued into my “dating” wardrobe. I have a few fun outfits to wear on first dates, some more revealing duds to show “I’m interested”, and of course some conservative clothing with a little spice for the “meet the boss/parents” dates. But everything started with feeling comfortable with what I had on. If I was forced to wear something that “wasn’t me” …it never goes well.

Whether you get inspired by someone on TV (I’m sure Sarah Jessica Parker has sold oodles of Manolos and funky mismatch short shorts for designers) or you like the way a pop star sets a trend. Try things out. One does not need to accept the boring suits trended by the executive ranks. You will stand out if you put your best dressed foot forward.

Live outside the box every once in a while, everyone always remembers the stand out.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Wedding Dates

With the Royal Wedding hoopla behind us…I have my own set of blissful events to attend. And here’s the rite of passage for the single girl: To attend a wedding solo. (In my case: Again.)


There are a couple of things I will admit to:

I’m jealous. You got a great guy and I love him and think you are a great couple. BUT I really do wish it was my wedding. The tears streaming down my face are not because I’m so damn happy for you. I’m mulling over all the guys I’ve dated and wondering why they never pulled the trigger. (Oh and I’m at your wedding solo and everyone else is married, brought a date or is ugly.)

I have taken the “friend date” who was acting like a boyfriend. I’ve taken male friends who were married (told to not wear rings), co workers (with whom I had to take them to a fine dinner for wasting an entire Saturday to go to your wedding), gay men (great dates…love the “acting as a couple” thing, and let’s face it, they can dance), and good male friends (who promised to go as long as the alcohol was free and they could watch the game.) I always made certain exceptions as long as I got a couple kisses, hand holding and maybe a slow dance.

I wanted to scream “Don’t do it” during the “….speak now or forever hold your peace” speech. I held my peace until they got divorced.

Thought your dress made your ass look huge. Unless you are a size two, please rethink they “fish tail” look. You really look like a satin sausage.

I hooked up with someone at your wedding. It was my “Wedding Crashers” moment. There…it’s been admitted.

It was a lovely event. Nice rent-a-hall. Oh and you’re totally inappropriate relatives are wasted and starting the Macarena. It wasn’t that fun…no matter how many people were dancing.

I left with a guy I didn’t bring to your wedding. This was the case when I asked my gay friend as my date to a wedding. I conveniently got a ride from the single guy I was flirting with at our table. Gay friend totally got it and left early. (His duties were done…and he was the best wing man ever.)

I have actually been dating someone and took them to your wedding. One word: torture. First, every guy thinks we are picturing our own walk down the aisle. Okay…we are. But, I usually tell my boyfriends of the time, “No Pressure”. But look: everyone knows…wedding attendance usually means women will sleep with you. So come to a happy medium. Play along with us…and let’s be happy for the blissful couple in front of us. But let’s go to the room once they cut the damn cake.

All this to say that I have three weddings to attend this summer season….Who wants to go with me?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

What About Prom?

The other day, I was minding my own business writing at a coffee shop. It was around 4:00pm in the “after school hours” and I watched a couple of teens saddle into the seats next to me. While I had my earphones on, I had the volume on low. (I love overhearing conversations, especially young love.)

“Um, so, um, I was wondering if you wanted to go to prom with me?” she asked. I felt like I was right back in highschool.

Here’s a shocker. I too asked a boy to prom.

I remember it like it was yesterday. Brian, a rebel, had been suspended from our school. I’m not sure why he was back on campus, but I totally remember asking him to prom in the parking lot and climbing the steps to yell to my bestie Kathy, “He said YES!”

There is something about prom season that brings me right back to high school. The pressure to find a date, the memories it creates, the moves he’s going to make, the bad corsages, the horrible posed pictures. It’s like the world’s worst first date, but a rite of passage at the same time.

Brian didn’t rent a limo, and we didn’t have that awkward moment at my parent’s house where they gushed over us. He was ‘low key’ -- we met at the venue.

Look, I knew then that Brian wasn’t that into me, but it didn’t deter the butterflies in my stomach. After all, I was just happy he said yes, and I was hopeful.

Looking back now, dating “Brian’s” was a pattern for me. I’d develop a huge crush, they knew it, and I’d let them treat me like crap. I had seriously low self esteem.

I sort of wish I could return to prom as an adult. I would do things much more differently and I have so much more self confidence. First, I would avoid Brian (and all other Brian-types), and find a date that actually wanted to go with me. One who wanted to be with me.

But as I’m examining the teens sitting next to me, I can see the same pattern. He’s not making eye contact, told her, “I’m not sure,” and now they are sitting there sipping their drinks in utter silence. (I so want to tell this girl that he’s not that into her…but alas...I’m mute.) Times have not changed.

(Oh and because I know you are all curious: This guy is not that “hot” on the “hot-ness” wheel of teen-dom. He might have some street cred on campus, I’m not sure. My guess is, he’s waiting to get a better offer. The girl on the other hand is far better looking, and I so want to tell her this, because she’s not going to believe her parents, when she tells them he said NO.)
Here’s what I know for sure: Yes, you have to put yourself out there if you want to find love. Yes, guys measure us up. Yes, you will get rejected more than accepted. Love hasn’t changed. Respect hasn’t changed. And you know…prom hasn’t changed. It’s still an awkward night. (Who wear ball gowns to dinners? Yes, we are all looking at you.) Have self confidence and don’t worry if you just go with friends. The thing is. Go. Cause you’ll be talking about it many years later.

And Brian if you are out there…. I’m still single. (But I’m not waiting for you to call.)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Urgh…Dating

I’ve had some friends recently tell me that they admire how many dates I go on. Am I not the norm? What are you people doing at home?

For as long as I’ve been alive, I’ve always been a social person. I was that kid on the playground, who’d go up to strangers and ask them if they wanted to play. It’s just how I am. I feel the same way in my dating life. I go out and meet a lot of men…some I continue to date, some I never hear from again, and some I might not “fall in love” but, develop friendships. I’m social. So kill me. I like meeting new people.

But not everyone I meet becomes a relationship.

When I usually reveal I’m a “romance writer” I get a varied reaction. Usually it starts with “cool” – but when I tell them I maintain a blog called “Dating in La La Land” they somewhat freak out. Here’s the thing, while I might write about “my dates” in this blog…I always have approval from the men beforehand.

The script usually goes something like this “I’m a romance writer”

And they respond with: “I could tell you some stories….”

And then they go on to tell me about the horrible women they’ve dated. But it’s not just the men….my girlfriends tell me too.

For example: My friend Laura went out with a guy, who when he hopped off the counter stool revealed he was a dwarf.

My friend Craig had a women use another photograph as her profile pic and flew in to meet him from out-of-town. She thought this ambush would work on him. (Right, like he’d be fine with a total stranger staying with him for three days). Craig, the utter gentleman, took her to a hotel.

One of my dates told me about the girl who was quick to point out she’d have sex with him that night if he wanted it. When he told me this story, I sat in utter awe…geez…are women really that ballsy? Apparently so, but my date didn’t take her up on her offer. He found her slutty. (Good call.)

Now I can’t say every date I’ve been on has been… “Choice” – there was a viral message I sent out about this guy who I went on a hike with on the beach, and the tide came in and well…he thought this was the oceans way of telling him to suck my face off. I couldn’t escape fast enough from that one.

But I’m curious…what bad dates have you been on? I’m always writing about thoughts and theories…and I need to hear more. So bring it on.

Oh…and get out there and meet people. I know we will all find love …it’s what I live for. Cause if there is one thing I know…he’s not in your apartment right now…so get out!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Gender Appropriateness

You know those things that men should just know and do? (Kill bugs, repair cars, take out the trash, fix things.)

Well, what if roles were reversed? Could we get used to the idea of a woman doing “man things” and a man doing “women things”?

I always have kept ‘one-eyed opened’ when a man tells me he wants to go shopping with me. But, it got me thinking…when I whip out my tools to fix a loose leg of a chair, does he think I’m butch?

I grew up in a house wherein my father didn’t know how to fix anything. He hired people. And he never ever went clothing shopping. My mother on the other hand always “tried” to fix things and she bought all his clothes. As for my siblings…we were given gender appropriate tasks: Brother took out the trash, my sister and I did dishes and helped with the laundry.

The other day a guy I have been dating asked me what I was doing, and I replied, “fixing my sink.” He went on to joke about me dialing a plumber … and I was like no, I put on my kitchen gloves, turned off the water, and got out my wrench. He found this odd yet titillating at the same time.

After being a homeowner for a number of years, there are just some things I always found I could do on my own. And every roommate I’ve ever had will admit I am a spider and/or bug killer.

Is it wrong to have these certain skills? Do we really need to be subservient to male roles? Haven’t we moved beyond that?

Looking back, I remember my dad going to a barber, but today’s men have a hairdresser. And is it me, or have men been using more and more “beauty products” lately? Times have changed.

When it comes to fixing my car, I am utterly clueless. This why I have a AAA card and call them then I get a flat tire. But what if I could jack up the car, and replace the muffler? And hell, fix my boyfriends car too?

What if your straight boyfriend was sewing curtains on a Saturday afternoon vs. playing ball, would that be odd…or would you buy him some fabric to make you some too?

So let’s go there, would you hire a female plumber, electrician or exterminator? What about a male maid, make-up consultant, or gynecologist?

I don’t have any answers, but I am amused by my re-conditioning of the male and female roles and now more than ever wondering what he really thought about me fixing my own sink. Hum.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Funky Scent

What do Matthew McConaughey, Robert Pattinson, Colin Farrell, and Johnny Depp have in common?


Funk? Odor? Halitosis?

They allegedly smell.

I received a call from a friend “I need your advice, I think I have a deal killer.” Her story: she had been chasing this guy for a few weeks – Type: Hot actor, they were doing a show together and had been flirting. Finally he got up enough courage and asked her out on a date. “We made out in the parking lot, and he is a great kisser, but he just had um, body odor.”

Deal killer maybe, mood killer for sure.

My advice was simple…their “make out” was, of course, after a rehearsal. So maybe he was a bit physical under the hot lights and as such…had some odor. Cut him some slack and not pass judgment until after a real date wherein he would probably shower.

My friend Troy outlined it best: “Men are like mayonnaise. You leave them out in the sun for eight hours you can expect bad things.”

But it got me thinking about scents. Have you ever walked through the mall, or been standing in line at the coffee shop, or even hanging at the DMV, and there, walking past you is a nice smelling man. He’s put together, hair in place, clothes are ironed, and he carries an air of confidence. You notice him.

Or how about those moments when you are about to have a first kiss, and somewhere in the last two minutes he must have slipped in a mint, yet you aren’t really sure when? I take appreciation in that attention to detail. In fact, recently I was on a date and my date slipped out to the bathroom before departing the restaurant, and he must have had a cherry lozenge. It was nice.

But body odor. Hum…whole new issue. There is a certain basic cleanliness you should attend to before you go a courtin’. Now, there are those who are attracted to, shall we say, the “natural scent” and I’ve done enough traveling in Europe and regions abroad, and met women who have no issue with those who forego the use of daily deodorant applications. This is not me.

And then on the other side of the coin, there are those that go WAY overboard with their colognes. In fact, just the other day I was daytripping with a new guy and we had a “close quarters” ambush with a gentleman who went a little liberal with his Old Spice application. I could literally taste this guy’s cologne and had to move to another part of the store. Be mindful of those around you: crowded areas like a bus, metro, or elevator can choke out the fresh air.

There needs to be a balance. A freshly bathed scent is just fine. If you are going to do physical activity, make sure your deodorant is working and for heaven’s sake, take a shower before you go on a date.

Monday, February 28, 2011

And The Winner Is....

What a difference a year makes.

Last year I wrote a blogpost about award season where was working and watching awards shows.

This year, I was the one at the parties and award shows.

I had sort of a “pinch me” moment while backstage at the Independent Spirit Awards. I was uncomfortable…. Didn’t know anyone and the only person I did know…was working with her headset on and rushing around. I watched Natalie Portman, Annette Benning, Mark Ruffalo, the entire cast of Winters Bone, and show host Joel McHale (who is very tall) all walk by. When a waiter came by and offered me an Irish Coffee (Jameson Irish Whiskey was their sponsor) I took it, and sipped down some confidence.

Going to these events is sort of like work.  You get out there and talk with people, put together movie deals and meet those that can make things happen. My mantra was, “this is your year Heidi.” So I put on my party dress with that attitude. I was there to work. (And I was working in 5 inch heels and a nice sheen of new Josie Maran make-up.)

Later that evening I had a wingman, my manager Adam, to the Weinstein Company party at The SoHo House. I was not allowed to be a wallflower, he was working the room and introducing me to friends along the way. Work, work, work…this is work?

As I tried not to spill my cocktail, nor let the backpain that was starting to collect in my lower back get the better of me, (damn heels), Adam was setting up meetings for me to meet with producers, agents, and financiers. We literally worked the room. I saw former colleagues, friends, and old love interests. Work, work, work.

I scanned the room and started noticing patterns. I watched women bat their lashes at males in the room. Actors, agents, producers all sipping their “cocktail confidence” trying to get laid. There were posers acting like they were big shots, slutty actresses trying to book “jobs” on casting couches, and there were big actors wide eyed and trying to figure out where their publicists were. And then it hit me….what was I really doing here? I wanted these people to read my book, make it into a movie, hell, turn my life into a Cinderella tale.

As I clicked my heels together ala Dorothy and watched a cute little brunette, claws out, batting lashes, fixated on Adam, I made my breakaway and found a loan chair to give my feet a break. There I met a wonderful woman *Joan whose husband was “working” as she put it. (This wasn’t Joan’s first rodeo show.) “I hate award season” she lamented. Joan was not only going to this party, but the Oscars the next day. Her husband was nominated.

Sweet, a real insider.

Joan asked me about my story, why I was there, who was I there with etc. Telling her I was a writer was easy, and Joan was happy that I was just a normal, non-poser type, looking for love in a sea of “the enhanced”. Joan began her commentary on the women at this event pointing out bad boob jobs, lip injections, and hair extensions. “It’s all too much” and even their surgeons were at this party. (Really, people bring their plastic surgeons to Hollywood parties? “They are working the room too.” Fascinating.)

After a good thirty minutes of chatting with Joan, who promised to call me later and set me up with a “great guy not in the business”, she clinked my glass and left me to go find Adam.

Adam and I went from party to party, keeping up our “cocktail confidence” airs about us. Work, work, work. I finally cab-ed it home circa 1:00am, my business card holder empty, and a glass of water with a Tylenol as my new drink of choice. I was home.

I woke up Sunday morning and knew I had changed from a year ago. I had grown. Sure there were lessons and “access” I learned from my old job. But I had a new confidence, not alcohol induced, I was a published writer. People wanted to meet me. And I wasn’t in the shadows. I was re-born.

On Sunday, I received tweets from friends on red carpets (ohmiygod, they don’t have lit toilets for reporters at Elton John!) and watched an ex boyfriend perfect his comb-over on E! while mugging in the background. I happily watched the awards with a friend, cooked a fabulous meal and had a relaxed air. My friend turned to me and said, “you’re different”…if only he knew the real truth.

I was a winner too.
*Joan is not her real name, but her husband is now an Oscar winner.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Single, Divorced, Long Term-ers

In my many years on this planet, I’ve dated men that fit into many many categories. So I’ve begun to poll my dates and friends for their thoughts on dating those who are single, divorced, and those who have been in long term relationships but never married.

While my statistics are not scientific, it’s helped me in my dating life. So let me fill you in.

MEN (Perspective from women dating men)

• Single Guys under 35: Looking for the hot chick in her 20’s. Not necessarily looking for a baby momma. (And always carry condoms.)

• Single Guys over 40: Houston we have a problem. They have never been married but think they have all the answers and just haven’t met “the one”. Men and women are different…it’s time to learn this and respect each other’s individually for if we are too similar…it would be weird.

• Long Term-ers: Scared of the future. They are stuck in their ways and getting married will just be too different for them. They would rather you leave them than force them to get married. “It’s just a piece of paper” anyway.

• Divorced Guys (divorced less than 5 years): Don’t want to get married ever. She took them to the cleaners and they are pissed off. Oh and you better be hot so he can show you off in case of a run in.

• Divorced Guys (divorced over 5 years): Want a companion. Miss having someone who cooks, cleans, and does laundry. Plus…you can get them organized. They’ve “been a mess since the divorce.” You are their new cheerleader. Rah Rah Rah.



WOMEN (Perspective from men dating women)

• Single Women under 25: Looking for a good time. Into their careers and climbing the ladder…so let’s just have fun.

• Single Women between 25-38: Looking for a baby daddy. Men sense this right away and run if scared. (Men carry condoms).

• Single Women 38 plus: They are there to be a cheer leader to a divorced guy.

• Single Women 45 plus (and never married): All men think you have ten cats. (I know you don’t…I’m just sayin…don’t talk about your odd hobbies.)

• Long term-ers: Totally frustrated by men and want the ring within 6 months of dating men.

• Divorced Women (divorced less than 5 years): Cougars on the prowl. Just want to have sex and it can be with the pool man, cable guy, and random hot dude who bags your groceries. Not looking for divorced dad types…yet.

• Divorced Women (divorced over 5 years): Want the Brady Bunch situation. You have kids, he has kids…let’s make this work. Finally ready for a real relationship.

Again…no hate mail on this…this is just what I’ve heard out there. I started asking after I started dating some men who were divorced (something I had not done a lot of early on) and well…it’s odd how they fit into various categories. Of course there are always exceptions to the rule and there are categories I know I haven’t even thought of. I’m just trying to sum up my “research”.

All this to say…if you are recently divorced, I don’t think you are banging your pool guy per se. It’s just that many of my male friends tell me women go through a “mid-life crisis” once their divorce papers are signed. I’m just stating what I’m being told.

But let’s keep the debate going…if you have a story: please email me:

heididcarson@gmail.com

Monday, February 7, 2011

Oh no…Valentine’s Day is Coming…Quick…Time to Panic?

What is it about Valentine’s that scares men? No really. I mean, all men I know hate Valentine’s day. Why?

Remember when we were kids and we were forced to write a Valentine to every kid in our class. But expect a card from a guy today…and forget about it. They clam up and all blame Hallmark for “making up” this holiday to sell them something.

I think men are half correct. Restaurants, florists, chocolate makers, and of course card companies all make a bundle on Valentine’s day. But does that mean I shouldn’t buy candy for kids on Halloween because Hershey is making a profit?

I was walking the aisles of my favorite store (um Target) the other day and I will admit, I got swept up and made some impulse purchases for the holiday: cute lace panties, a box of conversation hearts, and yes… I even bought some chocolate.

It was like I was in school again…letting the merchants make a buck or two off me to, I dunno, put a smile on my face.

What changed from when we were kids?

I know what it is…its expectation. Men feel if they don’t do something fantastic and romantic then we will be disappointed. (Um, we will.) Yes its true, many women have some romantic fantasy that our man will come home with a large bouquet of roses and/or chocolates and take us out to an amazing meal, and then we will have incredible sex. It’s one day out of the year…and it can actually be fun.

Do you not think you will meet our expectations? You are probably right. But let’s not get derailed. Let’s take baby steps to get you to “enjoy” this holiday.

Being someone who writes romance novels for a living…trust me…I have lived out the “romantic date” fantasy for decades…and I feel for all the men I’ve dated because I know this is added pressure. But take my profession out of the picture and I tell you what I really want…..Is You.

The little stuff you do for me all the time is far more romantic than anything you will/could bring me on Valentine’s day. Don’t be so scared. I don’t have a warped reality. Seriously I don’t.

Oh I know what you are going to say: If he doesn’t bring me: Flowers, Chocolates, or take me out to dinner –I will be disappointed.

Yes, but isn’t life full of disappointments? Prom? Graduation? Getting older? Yeah…all of it…overrated. And so is Valentine’s Day. Get over it.

Moons ago I was dating this guy who always got it “wrong” on Valentine’s Day. One year he took me to Benihana so we could have dinner with other random couples (ahhh Not romantic). Another year he took me to some Brazilian meat place where men in harem pants came to our table with sabers of beef and lamb they would slice off for us…yikes. But I shouldn’t complain, I mean he was making an effort because he never liked to go out to dinner in the first place. I was always so amused by what he thought I’d like. In all honesty…I didn’t need a fancy dinner…I just wanted to see him and know he loved me.

I was reminded by a very dear friend of mine that women should not put all this expectation on the day…it’s too much pressure for men. Really? Pressure to write me a card? Tell them they like me? Really?

Look….Having someone who is always “so busy” with work, family, school, other random commitments, for them to take a break from their lives to go on dates, go to a movie, and well…sit down and have a chat over a cup of tea…all those little things far outweigh anything that can happen on a date designed for the colors of pink and red.

Here’s my beef. Yes there is a lot of symbolism in Valentine’s day…lots of “pressures” because you might not be sure you actually like us, or gasp, love us. I can tell you…it’s a bigger sign if you do nothing, than if you just wrote us a card, made a mixed CD or spent two dollars on a box of conversation hearts.

So what do you want?

I hear you. You don’t want to give us “too much” of your heart on Valentine’s Day. So keep your roadside flowers (they will die in a few days anyways) and well…we don’t need the chocolates (which goes right to my thighs)…and let’s save money by not going out on a day when restaurants jack up the prices on prix fixed menus. Honestly, a quiet night in together is always nice, and if you put pen to paper and wrote me a card – well this is far more romantic than anything in my book.

So men out there…don’t be nervous. Be yourself. And you have to do SOMETHING (Hint: Write a card.) Because, if you like her…tell her. And if you don’t tell her everyday, tell her at least on ONE DAY out of the year. Hallmark is just your reminder notice.



Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Bill Splitter

You might have heard about this story…it was told to me by a friend who heard the women on The View chatting about it. Basically a woman went out on a date with a guy, she didn’t feel the chemistry, so when he emailed her for a second date, she politely said “thanks but, no thanks.”


His response was: “Sorry to hear that, but can you send me $45 for your share of the dinner bill?”
Ouch. Bitter?

Here’s my thought. He could have invited her to coffee. Usually the guy is the one asking the woman out. So if he was, ah, being cheap, then why didn’t he suggest something in his price range rather than try and woo a girl with a fancy dinner out the gate?

I don’t know about you, but I usually offer to pay the bill on a first date. I have never been taken up on my offer. (I will tell you I once went on an epic six hour long first date, and after he had paid for lunch, I thought it only fair that I pay for coffee, which the guy took me up on and I have NO ISSUE with that.)

Now I will admit, if I guy said, “Sure, could you give me $30 for your portion” it would change my perception of him. After all, he invited me on the date to said location. (I’m much more of a first date coffee or one drink cocktail type of person anyway.) But that’s my point, if you picked the restaurant, you pay.

It’s sort of obvious that this guy is a bit bummed he was dumped. But he shouldn’t have tried so hard. Meanwhile…how much do we hate her for going to the press with her “Story”.

So to the dumped guy…I think you actually dodged a bullet. Call me…we can go dutch to coffee.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Pay a date forward

The other day I was in Starbucks wherein the cashier told me that my drink had been paid for by a patron ahead of me. I glanced over to a beautiful red-headed woman and nodded a thank you. She was utterly embarrassed.

She politely confessed, "I told the cashier not to tell anyone I was purchasing drinks for the line. I simply wanted to 'pay it forward'."

I was thrilled with my afternoon pick-me-up and it got me thinking. I had been on a number of dates recently wherein for one reason or another, it wasn't a good fit, but I thought…maybe I should introduce them to another single friend of mine. A sort of paying a date forward.

I've been struggling with writing a blog post about a certain concept for about the past year. The idea was submitted to me by a friend wherein she stated I needed a "pair and a spare" in my dating life. That's right, I should always be dating three men at once. So I went out on this quest, and often was juggling three and even four men in my dating life at once. While I never wanted to confess I had such a prolific dating life on a public blog, I was literally keeping my options open and meeting new people. And let me just tell you, I've met some great men and while it might not have worked out for us romantically, I have thought about setting some of them up with my single friends. But is that such a good idea? (Girlfriends of mine…please feel free to chime in here.) I mean, who wants my cast-offs? But then again, if they weren't good fits for me, perhaps they would be a good fit for someone else?

(For the record… when dating multiple suitors…I ALWAYS had a rule. Once someone was moving into first position and we progressed to the bedroom, I would stop dating others. So before you all think I'm some ho-bag. I do have standards. Please.)

Anyway… I think that red-head is inspiring… I'm going to do the same thing today. Randomly buy someone coffee, and perhaps email a few friends and set up some dates. It's a New Year, and all I want is for everyone to find love.

Who knows if it will be successful or not, but if everyone is open to the idea… I'm going to pay a date forward.

HC

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Puffy Shirts


"He told me he worked in Regional Distribution" my friend Bekah said, "what he really meant was, he was a pizza delivery guy."

Ever been on a first date wherein the guy puffed up his image? And then a few dates down the line he was really…a pizza delivery guy? Bekah's story is all too familiar to me.

I can't tell you how many dates I've been on or heard tales of first dates wherein the "truth" was a little far from reality… the "financial analyst" is really a bank teller; the "chef" is really working at Taco Bell; the "talent manager" is an out of work actor; the "law enforcement officer" is really a security guard; and my favorite, the "government worker" is really collecting unemployment because really…in his eyes the government was paying him to not work right now.

Why do we do this? When we really get to know the person and they start revealing the truths we are going to second guess everything they've just said to us.

"She'll never go out with me if she knows I'm just an accountant," a friend told me. Says who? I would go out with an accountant. Shows they know how to deal with money, and who knows, they might have a good personality!

I went on a couple dates with a guy who was at the time the CEO of a company, but he had a tough road to this title. A little foreclosure, a little bankruptcy, but now he had a job and things were looking up…until…he lost his job…again.

In an instant he thought I didn't want to go out with him. Why would I? He didn't have a job. He had nothing.

He was totally wrong.

He had a great personality. We had similar interests, had fun dates, and he made me laugh.

But all that changed the day he lost his job.

His witty banter went right out of him and there was no way to prop him up. It wasn't about his status in life, I liked him in spite of his job. I told the CEO to put the wind back in his sails, but it was easier for him to run away vs. face me. I have never heard from him again.

I know my job does not define me. I am far more than a writer, blogger, television producer.

Confidence in what you do is sexy. So even if you are "just a" (insert: pizza delivery guy, accountant, production assistant, truck driver, barista, whatever.) Own it. Be the best burger flipper you can. Don't over inflate yourself to get the girl. She'll figure it out anyway. Aim high and have goals…cause if we like you, we'll believe in you.

The one thing I know for sure, behind every good man, is a good woman. And I love a confident man.
(Now, that said: I will admit, there are some superficial chicks out there. But did you really want them anyways? )

Match