While thousands of tax drivers protested in Melbourne the government plans to buyback tax licenses, one cabbie decided it was a good time to prank two Australian television networks. The cab driver of Greek origin told the TV reporters that his name was “Tsim Booky”. And so he was presented in the relevant news reports.
Until the Greek community revealed that the real meaning of the word was. A real No-no word.
— Football Nightmare (@jordansfootball) February 13, 2017
Minutes after the name appeared on television, screenshots of the cab driver’s face broke the internet all the way from Australia to Greece and the diaspora across the globe. The video became viral.
Some people on social media have dubbed him a legend and said he should be the next Prime Minister.
— James Belias (@jamesbelias) February 12, 2017
Others slammed him for tarnishing the rally where cabbies were trying to get the government to offer more compensation for its buyback scheme.
A post on social media said the taxi industry was in turmoil and working families were threatened with financial struggles.
“It would be funny under different, more relaxed circumstances but we are talking about the financial future of many Victoria families,” the post said.
“Does he not care that he disrespects the same government he demands better compensation? Does he not respect his own self esteem or his brother cabbies who are bleeding? Does he not care that he embarrasses his own Greek community? Should we the consumer not take them seriously either?”
“How can (cabbies) get support when you have clowns representing them on public television. Either take yourselves seriously cabbies or you will disappear by progress and technology.”
The cab driver became ‘face of the week’ in Australia. Who is he? Giannis from Kalamata, in south Peloponnese.
“Australian media had it coming. For quite some time now, not only have they not been reporting on our requests but they make fun of us and our protests,” he told Neos Kosmos.
“Some were quick to judge and argue that I’m embarrassing the Greek community and my colleagues. People who know me however, call me ‘the funny bloke’ for my snarky and cynical sense of humour.”
Stressing that he was angry at the media for ignoring or mocking the cab drivers struggle, he criticized TV channels for interviewing “old Greek Australian cab drivers whose English is poor and edit the conversation to make us all look like fools.”
Underlining that he did not have any regrets, Giannis said “Thanks to my ridiculous alias, our complaints are being heard.”
PS I think the correct spelling should be “Chim Booky” 😛