Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Why Cricket in Florida?

Moving from one area to another and settling in can give you time to consider your surroundings and be confused. 

I woke today, early, and realized that I had not written a posting for today so I went to Google Insight.  It's the theory that if other people are interested in something, I may be too.  You know, the Herd Mentality.  The Justin Bieber phenomenon.

It tells you what was searched in a given area for a given period of time.  It gives me the top ten, although I seem to remember that I could go back and search for more than just that.  I can look at the major metro areas in many countries, and see what they were thinking.  Great for solving writers' block but I'm still a bit confused about any other practical use.

So here I sit, at dawn, windows open listening to some Goa-Psy Trance and wonder...

Why Cricket?

I have read the Wikipedia page on the rules to the game and for all I can see its a bunch of grown men running back and forth between two sets of pegs in the ground after hitting a ball with a frat paddle.

Every time I start to read that article, my eyes glaze over and think... I've got to ask a Brit Ex-Pat next time I speak to one.  It's a game that is played in "Commonwealth Nations" and is apparently the "National Sport of Great Britain".

It still looks like a bunch of guys running around between sets of pegs to me but what ever floats your boat...

But why in Florida?

We had a Cricket club in Philadelphia near the house.  It just looked like a big open field to me when I'd walk the dog by.  Nobody ever used it at that particular time of day and I just scratched my head and thought that it's better than plopping houses down on the grounds.  It had been there for longer than I was, and it was still there.   I had this feeling that it was the descendant of a club that was four or five times removed from pre-revolutionary times.  It was Philadelphia after all.

But here in South Florida, you would be hard pressed to find anything that predates 1900 let alone 1776.  Almost everything here is "new" in comparison.  Homes and businesses are typically low slung to avoid the high winds out of the occasional tropical storm and there is a "look" to everything.  Strip Malls and Fake Spanish Architecture with some Old Florida Concrete Block Homes with some vulgar gated communities full of Mc Mansions.  Add in a lot of Royal Palms and Ficus Hedges.  Want a better view? I suggest street view in Google Maps...

People flooded in after the invention of air conditioning made it possible to live in comparative comfort and luxury.  Like any inflow of people, it would reflect those who live nearest.  The Cubans flooded in to Miami in the 60s due to the overthrow of Battista's regime and there were waves of people from places like Jamaica, the Bahamas, and Barbados as well.  Adds an Island Flavour to the area.

They did bring their own traditions with them, and I can get a wonderful Cuban meal just by walking a mile up the road.  Yes, I walk,  I'm from Philadelphia and we *do* that.

We are close enough to those places that when I get in the car and am listening to AM radio, I will stop for a while on "Zed N S" or ZNS Bahamas Radio Northern Service on 810 and see what the neighbors are doing.  Often during the news I'll hear about a little old lady in Eleuthera who had an accident with a palm tree or their sport scores.

That would explain it, the Bahamians as well as the rest of those Caribbean Nationals who settled here brought their fondness for that intractable game, Cricket. 

I still don't get the game, but it does explain why there were searches at all.

Then again, The Superbowl is just an excuse for me to overeat, Baseball is deadly dull, and don't even get me started on Soccer!

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