Oh, Moondoggie !

Posted by Heather
In events, life, music
15Jan 10

     One of my favourite movies as a little girl was 1959’s ” Gidget “, starring Sandra Dee ( as the title character ) and James Darren as ” Moondoggie “.  I always liked how the sweet, well-mannered, wholesome Gidget ended up with the dreamy, handsome Moondoggie.  ( it gave us girls hope that our “old – fashioned ” upbringing may pay off one day )

Gidget Poster

Gidget Poster


     I had a huge crush on James Darren from the first time I saw that movie until …well … I guess I still do. ( my husband thinks it is cute, by the way ) My biggest dream as a child was to meet ” Moondoggie ” one day.  Years went by, I saw James Darren in other movies and T.V. shows ( T.J. Hooker, Star Trek DS9, just to name a couple ) and I always held on to the crazy fantasy of one day meeting him face to face,  just to make the ” little girl ” in me happy.

James Darren

James Darren

Around 2004, I started collecting vintage movie stills and promo shots ( some reproductions ) from the movie “Gidget” – most of which I acquired on Ebay.  By 2005, I was determined that as a grown woman, why couldn’t I meet my girlhood crush ?  I was tired of wishing for things, and never having them come true.  I decided to ask a well-connected friend if she knew anyone who knew him well.  ( You never know until you ask ) I knew he was still singing, so checked out the venues he was playing that year.  Loving Vegas as I do, I booked a trip specifically around his show, and a friend of a friend ( the very kind Paul Anka ) made a call to James Darren’s people to not only arrange good seats, but to also get me backstage to meet him after the show.  I could not believe how easily a fantasy I’d had most of my life became reality, simply because I had the courage to ask – I was blown away.
Oh, Moondoggie!

Oh, Moondoggie!

I felt like that innocent little girl again, watching him perform, then going backstage to finally meet him after the show. ( which was fabulous, by the way )  The best part of it all was that he turned out to be not only a wonderful actor and singer, but a genuinely kind, decent, gracious, classy human being.  It’s not often that famous people we adore turn out to be what we imagined ( in real life ), but in this case, my childhood ideas of James Darren were able to remain intact.  That was definitely one of the best nights of my life – what a thrill !
To this day, I keep one of the pictures of us hung in a prominent place in my home, for those times when I think life isn’t going as I’d like it to.  When I feel down, it reminds me that dreams really can come true.  The trick is, sitting around and waiting for something good to happen isn’t the way to do it – we may be waiting for a very long time.  If we want something badly enough, we just have to go out there and get it, and if we need help with that, then we must not be too shy to ask.  I know I’m glad I did. 🙂


  1. Jarome, January 15, 2010:

    Wow Heather, what a great story!
    Proof that persistence and confidence can bring you great opportunities.

  2. Elika, March 22, 2010:

    What a moving story Heather! I believe that when one sets one’s mind to accomplishing great things, it will likely come to pass! Thanks for sharing.

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