Pastry shop owner fights OQLF with humor

Posted By: Richard Deschamps · 2/27/2013 12:13:00 PM

The owner of a pastry shop in Pointe Claire is fighting fire with humor.

Harry Schick, the owner of the Swiss Vienna Pastry and Delicatessen on St. John's Road, says he recently got a letter from the OQLF about some of his bilingual signs on his window.

The problem? The French isn't bigger than the English on the signs.

Schick decided that rather than let Quebec's language politics get him down, he would deal with his frustration in a lighthearted, comedic way, and decided to rename his macaroni salad the Pasta Marois, salad, with a little extra cheeses, carrots and mayo.

"This has been going on since 1976." Shick says. "I've held my position, and I'm not going to let them get to me. I'm having fun with them."

Schick says people, both anglophones and francophones, laugh when they see the new addition to the menu.

And he says, he's not going to change the signs, because they've been there since the shop opened a half-century ago.

Photos: Laura Casella

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  1. Rocco posted on 02/27/2013 12:48 PM
    Next time when I will be in your pastry shop picking up those wonderful mille feuille which are to die for, I will pick up some of that Marois pasta.
  2. PineGal posted on 02/27/2013 12:51 PM
    I look it, we should all be doing something to help our cause. Let's fight back......
  3. Anna Maria posted on 02/27/2013 01:00 PM
    Great idea, do not remove those signs because WE LOVE THEM just the way they are. No more bending for the Bullies at OQLF!!!
  4. Gerry Nardozi posted on 02/27/2013 01:11 PM
    What has happened to once our beautiful province Quebec.The goverment says that we are in deficit and were spending tax payers money on this so called OQLF office people riding in cars and waisting time on foolish non-sence like this. This manis just making a living just like all the other people in this province.

    PLEASE PAULINA MAROIS WAKE UP AND DO SOMETHING TO THESE CLOWNS IN THIS OQLF GROUP in staed of bieng in Miami and taking the sun. were a laughing stock the rest of world .

    1. allan posted on 02/28/2013 03:53 AM
      @Gerry Nardozi when the language police arrives Demand you be served in Englis and speak only english and explain it is your tax dollars and your right to be served in the oficial language of this country and it is your choice on which language you be served in and also and video record this event on your smart phone then upload it to u-tube and fire it off to all the media!!!
  5. Ralph posted on 02/27/2013 01:13 PM
    Montreal should separate from Quebec and imprison the OLF for treason .
    1. Donna posted on 02/27/2013 02:35 PM
      @Ralph Montreal and the South Shore also the Eastern Townships and the Laurentians should separate from Quebec and get rid of the OQLF and Bill 101.
  6. John posted on 02/27/2013 01:34 PM
    I don't think this Marois salad tastes good!
    1. Don posted on 02/27/2013 09:48 PM
      @John The name alone (Marois pasta salad opps pasta salad Marois) makes you feel sick!!
  7. ap posted on 02/27/2013 02:33 PM
    That is great advertising and at a low cost..Every english establisment should have this publicity when the QOLF arrives at their establishment.
    Why not post Aislin Picture of Marois but add meatballs for earrings. When the QOLF visits you, we can support you and have a good laugh at the same time... Good for the health of english quebecers.
  8. Rob posted on 02/27/2013 02:36 PM
    Napanee, On Thinks you rock!! Go Habs Go!!
  9. Alain Giguere posted on 02/27/2013 02:42 PM
    Someone should buy 20 lbs of it and send 10 lbs to marois, the other 10 lbs leave it sit in the sun for a couple of weeks then sent it to OQLF.
  10. Eric posted on 02/27/2013 02:56 PM
    Sadly, it wont be long before the Blue shirts of the QQQ go and throw a brick or paint his windows
  11. lucy posted on 02/27/2013 03:18 PM
    Thank you sir, if im ever in the neighborhood im buying pasta salad and wutever else i see whether i need it or not.
  12. Declan former Montreal Resident now in Europe posted on 02/27/2013 03:35 PM
    Vive Le Montréal Libre... time to secede I agree with the poster Ralph who said that.
  13. Umaga posted on 02/27/2013 04:24 PM
    Hordes of filthy wannabe revolutionaries turning downtown into a war-zone , the head of the Super-Hospital on the run from the law , city hall raided like some biker-bunker in Sorel , a mayor more interested in covering his backside than providing any leadership , and what gets the Angry-Anglos exited ?

    Some shmuck deli-owner who sticks an 8 by 6 inch sign in his macaroni salad that says " Pasta- Marois " !!
    1. al posted on 03/01/2013 12:00 PM
      @Umaga We have not exited yet but excited and his name is Harry..Be polite..even is you can't spell.
  14. The Morris Family posted on 02/27/2013 04:28 PM
    Since many of the multinationals with plants and stores in Quebec have buckled under to the ridiculous language regulations of the Quebec Government, it is refreshing to see that someone is resisting the foolishness of those regulations as enforced by the OQLF. Bravo! In a debt ridden society, there are many more important issues to deal with than the size of lettering on commercial signs.
  15. Steph posted on 02/27/2013 06:00 PM
    Bravo! I will definitely be paying and your establishment a visit. Anybody brave enough to stand up to the bullies at the OQL and PQ have my full support and my business. You are a hero. If every business had this attitute then the wasteful, oppressive and discrimatory language police would not have legs, and would eventually crumble and disintegrate.
  16. Villeneuve posted on 02/27/2013 07:14 PM
    We should think of a Pasta Name for the OQLF
    Pasta a la liberté
    Pasta a lignorance
    Pasta pour les Nouilles
  17. winston smith posted on 02/27/2013 08:06 PM
    Never thought I'd be living in Orwell's Quebecania being hounded by the Minilang and the Language Police, a division of the Thought Police. This is" double plus ungood"!
  18. oleg posted on 02/27/2013 09:57 PM
    Harry, thank you for standing up for all of our collective rights, Anglophones, Francophones and Allophones. If we don't stand up for our equal rights, and we are equal, not almost equal, 100% equal, soon we all be forced to wear small yellow, Fleur des Lis, on our lapels. That would show that we are less then equal. People forget history, and while everybody is walking on eggs scared to say this, if we don't act and keep quite, it will happen. All because we don't want to offend these cockroaches, PQ and their Xenophobic ilk yet they have no problem offending us! We stand with you Harry, enough is enough. Any help you need. Oleg
    1. Le Québécois posted on 03/01/2013 05:22 PM
      @oleg "People forget history"

      Sure, remember the Dorris Club, or the war measures, or the 1982 imposed constitution, rep by pop, forced merger of the two Canadas, numerous assimilation policies gueared towards a population without litterature of history ?

      "our collective rights, Anglophones, Francophones and Allophones."

      Well if 125 angryphones speak for all 8 millions Quebekers than we are in deep trouble. :)

      While some Quebekers disagree, the vast majority of people understand at least the principle and necessity of language laws. And while some pastas sometimes offends a little bit here and there, the vast majority of people try to cooperate with the laws, and we are thankful for the vast majority of english quebekers that understand this.
  19. Allan posted on 02/28/2013 03:46 AM
    Keep up the good work and keep the English the same size as French I want to be able to read your sign as I do not have 20/20 vision and to break out my microscope to read English information on your store would be tragic. I know the French are BLIND and need bigger writting I am also blind and want to be in equal standing as the French Quebecer and have EQUAL free access to your English information on your store window.
    Allan McLaughlin
  20. Richard Kenyon posted on 02/28/2013 10:19 AM
    Fix the roads in Quebec, NOT language!!!!
  21. Harold Staviss posted on 02/28/2013 11:45 AM
    Keep it up Harry. You are doing a great job. Too bad there are not more Harry's around. We need more Harry's. Are you listening all you Starbucks, SecondCup, Subway, DavidsTea, the Bay, etc...
  22. Donna Belanger posted on 02/28/2013 12:23 PM
    I moved out of Quebec 3 years ago, mostly because of the insanity of the QOLF.
    I have to say the one thing I really miss about Montreal is the Swiss Vienna Pastry Shop! LOVED their chocolate eclairs and many other delicacies, and wish I could get them here in Nova Scotia!
    Harry, you keep on fighting on, love yur sense of humour!
  23. Stewart posted on 02/28/2013 02:32 PM
    I think yesterday someone texted in a great name for pasta, Paulineguini.....while cooking dinner last night I thought a good addition would be "Paulineguini Maroisnara"
    Someone has gotta put that on the menu:-)
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