Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Jimmuy Zoubris and Politics: Citizenship, Hard Work, and Maybe Hope

We've traded at Zoubris since it opened. The stationery store on Park Avenue was where I sent faxes to my mother in her last days before her death in 1999, where all my novels have been copied before sending out to publishers, where I made a tee shirt with a picture of Jeanne for my husband's birthday last year. It is neighborhood institution, the necessary complement to a home office for the hundreds if not thousands of people around here who work on contracts: writers, photographers, restaurants, small businesses of all sorts.

Jimmy Zoubris, the founders' son, was there when it opened in 1983 and he was still a university students. His parents are semi-retired, so with his sister Demetra, he runs the show. He also is the essential link between many parts of the community, since he knows everybody, and talks to everyone. And now he's taken a leap into muncipal politics (he already has served on a schoolboard,) becoming a vice presidents of the progressive Projet Montréal party.

The Gazette's Mike Boone profiled him on Monday, and if you didn't see it, here's the link. It's a great story of how one man cares about government.

1 comment:

lagatta à montréal said...

Yes, I've also done business with the Zoubris family shop for years, though I do photocopies, faxes and such with Promo-National, a print shop on Dante in la Petite Italie, even closer to me. I read Mike Boone's profile of Jimmy Zoubris, was pleased to see it after some of the ignorant comments about cyclists from some other avenue du Parc merchants including the flag store guy. People who usually cycle or walk are far more likely to do business with neighbourhood commerce, after all!

And indeed he'd break with the Projet Montréal stereotype (I'd confirm it, I'm afraid, though I've never worn Birkenstocks).

After all, he successfully spearheaded the drive to keep the street name which is short, relates to the geography, and is easy to pronounce in French or English for people of just about every origin (Yes, Arabic-speakers will make Ps into Bs, but there is no Bark street around here).