He’s got a golden ticket

This American Life is a weekly radio show & podcast I mentioned in the TOOLS site a couple of years ago. I’ve been catching up on episodes again recently and really enjoyed the latest, “Abdi and the Golden Ticket” (#560, from July 3rd).


It’s the story of a young man from Somalia, later a refugee living in Kenya, who wins a lottery to get a special kind of green-card visa to go to the US. The path is not an easy one, though. Listen to hear his story. There’s a transcript you can follow along with, to help with noticing language.

The story first appeared in the BBC last December: “Abdi and his golden ticket to the US” by Leo Hornak.

Not to make light of the seriousness of Abdi’s situation or that of all the other Somali refugees, but the “golden ticket” reference is from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Here’s the key scene from the original 1971 movie and the 2005 remake:


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