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Gidget, late 1990’s spokesdog for the Taco Bell restaurants, has gone to her reward.

Born, Montemorelos Nuevo Leon Constanza Jaunita Jesus de Gedgitita, her acting teacher Marco Perella, suggested the name “Gidget,” over margarita’s at their Georgetown home. The name stuck –and the rest was history.

Her early years were spent chasing ‘ardillas‘ (spanish for squirrels) and gnawing on the pecans that fell to the ground under a giant tree in the back yard.

An observable talent for drama, Gidget developed her acting muscles under the teaching duo of Marco and Diane Perella, the famed comedy team responsible for The Melancholy Ramblers.

Turned down for the role of Underdog, ostensibly because her ears were too big.

bigger-box

Gidget: December 25, 1994 -- July 21, 2009

The chihuahua came to fame, after the phrase, “¡Yo quiero Taco Bell!” smashed into the public consciousness. Later, the fearless pooch’s utterance; “Here lizard, lizard, lizard,” went viral during the promotion of the 1998 remake of “Godzilla.” The film stared Matthew Broderick as Dr. Niko Tatopoulos. The actor could not be reached for comment but a spokesperson for Mr. Borderick said he was “grief stricken” at the news.

During the summer of 1998, several commercials pairing Godzilla with the Taco Bell mascot were produced and aired, including several with the chihuahua trying to catch Godzilla in a tiny box, whistling and calling, “Here, lizard, lizard, lizard.” When Godzilla appears, the chihuahua says, “Uh-oh. I think I need a bigger box.”

Some…accused the dog of being a thinly veiled cultural stereotype. The company stopped showing the dog in advertisements in 2000. It was incorrectly rumored that Taco Bell ended the commercials because the dog died.

Legal troubles

Dogged by claims of racial and cultural insensitivity, She pressed on — through the last decade of her life Gidget, managed to regain some of the credibility lost her after a spate of legal battles with her corporate masters. In the Surpreme Court ruling: Gidget vs Taco Bell, justices ruled 8 to 1 in her favor, citing Stare decisis et non quieta movere. Justice Thomas, being the lone dissenter.

Drug and alcohol abuse

Depressed by the stink left in the wake of her all too short film career, penny-less unemployable, Gidget sought solace in the bottle. Friends were horrified when they discovered she had chewed her tail ragged. Only after months of detox and obediance training, was she able to reinvent her life.

Retiring years

Her retiring years were not totally spent in ruminating over what might have been. There were times of relaxation –sitting in her chair in front of the air conditioner she dreamed of the glory days to come, forgetting her past stardom.  Even so, the stress of legal wrangling took it’s toll. In 2004, Gidget was found wandering her neighborhood, dazed and confused. It was later reveled in her memoirs, she had “O. D.” on food scraps and chicken bones left in the kitchen trash can.

Political activism

Again, on the road to recovery, an awakening sense of political activism pushed Gidget into the limelight once more. Thrilled by the nomination of Sotomayor…urged her fellow pooches to stop making Supreme Court nominations like Sonia Sotomayor’s a “battle over our culture.”

…called Sotomayor’s hard-knocks life “a helluva story,” though she disagreed with some of her views.

At the time of her passing Gidget was developing a screenplay,  based on the book “A Dog’s Life, The Autobiography of a Stray” by Ann M. Martin.

Gidget died of a stroke on Tuesday, July 21, 2009. She was 15.

see also:  The Taco Bell dog has Died, For Whom The Taco Bell TollsTaco Bell ChihuahuaGodzilla (1998 film)

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