During his chat he had a woman in a french maids uniform serve him drinks. Niel French. French maid. There's a joke in there somewhere. The reactions seem to all agree that Niel is often brilliant, and often a misogynist - though what ad-man of his generation isn't? The Truth is in Neil French's Jack and Coke, found on room 116 RSS feed but seems to have vanished from their site. Nancy Vonk writes about it at ihaveanidea.org.
"I almost managed to blank out the idiocy of the French maid for awhile because the Fenske-Boyko-French combo was on the whole so interesting and enjoyable. But by the time Neil let into the women---the slacker breeders who he made clear really don’t belong in this man’s game, my jaded jaw hit the floor."
Brett McKenzie lead writer at ihaveanidea, tells us even more about the evening. "For those who weren’t in attendance but heard whispers about the evening, you most likely heard about the part when Neil's musings turned toward the topic of women in advertising. Yes, the tension in the room definitely raised a few notches when Neil had some pretty harsh words for the females in creative. A number of people squirmed in their seats, and a few even got up and left the event altogether. However, whether you agreed with Neil's views or not, or whether you thought HE believed what he was saying, or just turned up his opinions for shock value (as showmen tend to do) the majority of the crowd hung on his every word.
There was a great moment of levity when an audience member asked Neil what he'd come back as if reincarnation existed, and Boyko and Fenske answered "an accounts guy! A FEMALE accounts guy!" Neil sheepishly admitted that if karma were real, they’d probably be right"