Happy Friday to my wonderful readers! Hope you all have had a good week, I’ve watched some exciting playoff baseball (Dodgers fans, I feel your pain), learned all kinds of new words thanks to our almost 2-year-old’s attempt at pronouncing real words, and boy oh boy am I counting down the hours until tonight, when after the kids are asleep my wife and I will watch the long-awaited “Breaking Bad” movie, El Camino, which I completely expect to be awesome.
Look, most times when you try to extend a franchise beyond its original greatness, it fails miserably (“Gilmore Girls” movie, I’m talking to you). But Vince Gilligan is such a brilliant creator and writer of TV, that I have complete faith he made El Camino terrific. Needless to say, you’ll be reading my review on Monday 🙂
OK, on with the show. We start Good News Friday with an incredible tale of a homeless singer in Los Angeles who just made her opera debut.
A 52-year-old woman named Emily Zamourka was living on the streets of Southern California, singing only for herself, when an LAPD officer named Alex Frazier stumbled upon her at a subway station and recorded her performance of an opera called “O mio babbino caro.” on Sept. 26.
He uploaded it to Twitter, it went incredibly viral (is that an oxymoron? Maybe. OK, how about it went “super viral?”), and she suddenly got worldwide attention.
Zamourka, within two weeks, has reportedly been offered a recording contract, and this week she sang on stage for the first time, at a local Los Angeles city ceremony.
Zamourka, who said she used to play her violin on the street before it was stolen, is overwhelmed by the attention, and she had a tearful meeting with Frazier last week.
“I am so grateful, but I also wish that the kindness I am experiencing now I might have felt when no one knew of my singing,” Zamourka, who said she emigrated from Moldova nearly three decades ago and has been homeless in L.A. for around three years, tells USA TODAY.
What a great story. She’s really quite amazing. Just reminds you, once again, that everyone, no matter who they are or what their circumstances are, has something great to offer the world.
It’s sad that it took a police officer happening to be in the right place at the right time to discover Emily. But the world will be enriched and made more beautiful because he did.
**Next up today, I have no idea who this child is,, except that is name is Ayaan, or where he lives, or anything else. But it absolutely put a smile on my face, a small boy walking to school and repeating his daily affirmation about his worth.
So, so sweet.
**Finally today, a major world city is doing something awesome that I would love to see other cities doing.
In Rome, a new program allows riders of their metro (subway) service to redeem plastic bottles for money toward a train ticket.
The way it works is this: for every 30 plastic bottles recycled at one of Rome’s metro stations, riders get one free ride card.
Perfect. Especially in cities like New York, Chicago, London, where there are millions of people who use public transportation every day, this system would be incredibly useful.
I hope it’s copied many times over.