Monday, April 8, 2013

Annette Funicello: I wish people would stop dying for a minute

When I was twelve, I watched the Mickey Mouse Club where Annette, also aged twelve, was the most "popular"of the Mouseketeers.  I liked Annette, but I was really a Darlene fan.  Annette reigned as queen of the little mouse-eared people, while Darlene was more of a Miss Congeniality type.  Plus, Darlene had a wide mouth, but not as wide as Bobby's mouth.  Anyway, I'm drawn to people with wide mouths like my own, and though I admired queens, (there's Amy of Little Women again), I preferred the tortured, humorous secondary characters.

I'm mixing metaphors.

I admired Jo March, who was not a Mouseketeer at all, nor was she secondary.  Darlene, was not tortured.  Disney did not do "tortured" in 1955.

Annette Funicello is dead at 70, and I'm more sad than I can believe.  She was pretty and sweet at twelve. It's like saying good-bye to sixth grade all over again.  Good-bye to being twelve, when I was my best self.

1955 was before Frankie Avalon and the beach movies and big hair.  I did not follow Annette Funicello into those beach movies, but the year I was twelve, she was one of my best friends.  She and Darlene and Bobby.


  1. i'm sad too. babes in toyland was my first "favorite movie." i watched from age 4-8.

    i still know all the words to the songs.

  2. A lovely, melancholy post.

    From everything I've read, Annette stayed sweet. I don't know why that matters to me, but it does. Did you know that she collected and designed her line of teddy bears? That seems fitting somehow.

  3. I love it when you write like this. Lovely.