If you’re in the UK, you’d have to have been deaf, dumb AND blind not to have seen any of the column inches dedicated to Gail Trimble, the captain of this years winning team of University Challenge.
If you’re not in the UK, University Challenge is an incredibly difficult “quiz” show (the inverted commas insinuate that the word “quiz” is not sufficient to convey quite how difficult this show really is) which features teams from various universities who are thrown increasingly hard general knowledge questions in an attempt to demonstrate their superior intellectual ability. It’s something of an institution on the BBC and despite the not-so-high ratings, has been running for years.
To be fair to Gail she did do incredibly well, scoring the highest individual score (the show has teams, but the scores of the members are also measured) since 1962. However…
…I’d just like to get on my feminist soap box and say quite how utterly ridiculous all this press coverage is. I care not for UC, but in the past week I have read about her “Rapunzel like hair”, her glasses, how a lads mag wants her to pose naked, how people think she’s “patronising” for saying ‘well done’ to her teammates for getting questions right, how she’s sweet, how she’s evil, how bloggers hate her so, and, most recently, how she’s getting married.
You might well be asking “what’s the big deal”… well I’ll tell you why and let you think about it for yourself: if she was a man, none of the above would ever have been mentioned.
[Edit: Well, after all the hoohaa about Trimble, it’s just emerged that one of her teammates wasn’t actually a student at Christ Church, Cambridge, at the time the program was filmed. So they’ve been stripped of the win and it’s gone to Manchester instead. Rather petty, but I must admit I feel pleased the common folk have won ;P ]