Fiona Duff: Wine reveals my inner mouthy mare

Fiona Duff spoke up for women
Fiona Duff spoke up for women
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I was invited to a dinner earlier this week. I can’t say much about it, as there was a ‘what goes on tour stays on tour’ type thingy, if you get my meaning. Not that the Rolling Stones or any other rock group were involved.

Anyway, there were about 20 of us and as we gradually appeared for pre-supper drinks, a realisation crept over me – I was the only female present of whom I was aware.

I turned to the organiser, a chap I had been at university with, and perhaps I was the only woman he knew in Scotland.

“Am I the only female here?” I asked. “Yes,” he replied, “I thought if I told you that you may not come along.”

Obviously he had forgotten the mouthy mare he knew at university many moons ago, although, as he might have remembered, I wasn’t one to speak up in public.

As the night wore on I somehow lost those inhibitions – I suppose the wine helped. Someone rambled on about how their research wasn’t given any coverage so I suggested that if he presented it in a more interesting way perhaps we would.

I did apologise afterwards and he, poor academic, agreed that I may have a point. At one point, for some reason, I asked if anyone around the table knew the price of a pint of milk. Of course the answer was no.

Then at the end of the evening I stood up and pointed out that for our group of 20 people to have one woman and no people of colour is unacceptable in this day and age.

I am not quite sure where it came from as I am not that type of person to voice those opinions in public.

But, you know what, the next day when the wine wore off and the realisation of the type of event I had attended, I was rather proud of myself.

To be honest, I didn’t know I had it in me.