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⚑ November 13, 2017

Gidget Gets Woke πŸ‘™

The real Gidget with her dad, the author.

The real Gidget with her dad, the author.

The old stories that have been whispered forever on the darkish Alt-Gossip-Celebrities pages since the very beginning of internet time (1994) are coming into the light of the mainstream, and suddenly I’m re-thinking all the bad things I’ve heard about starlets and their strange acting-out shenanigans. I’m especially rethinking a visit we made to one of them, by mistake, when we lived in Los Angeles. The following story is true, but it is also a Blind Item, masked to protect the innocence, which is fleeting.

She was one of the prettiest, dewiest, most perfect starlets of them all when she was young. Now she was nearing the end of her life, and when we first stepped into her apartment, through a back kitchen door, we didn’t know that she would be upstairs, in bed, receiving visitors. Well, not really visitors … we were Looky-Loos, the most hated kind of real-estate maybe buyer, and we were really really Looky. Brand-new to the West Coast without a friend in the town, celebrity-curious and hoping to make contacts for our writing and looking at houses we might one day afford … we were the quintessential Looky-Loos.

Which means you notice everything when you step foot in anyone’s somewhat fancy place in the city of stars. The agent described a penthouse duplex apartment in West Hollywood, with sweeping views; not the sort of thing we liked but we were trying to learn more about that part of town because we were considering a Lloyd Wright house that was on the market due to serious concrete distress. It was a steal.

The owner of the penthouse was a serious drinker of perhaps gin, vodka, vermouth, or tequila. The real estate agent had directed us to come at an appointed time, but she was nowhere to be seen, so we followed another couple of people into the apartment, past the bottles tumbling out of the doggie-litter trash, past an open door to the guest bathroom. Of course, I peeked in and wow! There in the bathroom was a wall-to-wall array of makeup perfectly and carefully lined up, every pot of color and tray of powder and brush and dauber … but most of all, every single losange of color was lovingly hewn down to bare metal at the center. So much stroking and coloring on that perfect, perfect face. So much vodka. We will never know what those big doe eyes saw in her reflection, but her eyes were always sad.

I pulled Bill in to look at my discovery, but he had already scanned the living room and was beside himself with excitement. β€œDo you know whose house this is?” He asked. I didn’t want to know because Bill was usually wrong, always jumping to the wrong beaming face in a photo. But this time, he was right.

Gidget and another older man.

Gidget and another older man.

There have been many Gidgets through the years, and I’d like to believe that all girls will remain innocent as long as they want and that they will only encounter older men who are gents. Many a plot revolved around poor Gidge, almost in the clutches of a rake, a lounge lizard, a rouΓ©, a cad. In the movies and on TV, Gidget always gets away before any damage is done. It’s titillating! Some Gidgets of my generation were not so lucky and didn’t get away in time, and some of them are here today, armed with memories and suddenly surrounded by fellow Gidgets who are similarly armed.

The Gidgets of yesterday who have gone on to surf the sky are looking down, I hope, at a rising tide of pink pussy hats. Gidget is glad. Meanwhile, back at the apartment … it turns out it was never actually listed and was not Open that Sunday or any Sunday. The agent was doing a favor for a friend of a friend and was creating a perpetual audience of at least some Looky-Loos. For old times’ sake. Welcome to show business. πŸ”