I’ve never played cricket. Never even watched a single match. In fact the most I know about cricket is from an Indian girl I briefly dated who told me there was franchise in one city whose team name was inspired by David Hasselhoff (the Kolkata Knight Riders).
True story bro.
Though I don’t have the faintest clue about cricket, I do know that sports has an incredible transformational power to bring people together and be an instructional tool for life.
The Compton cricket journey started when homeless advocate Ted Hayes founded Dome Village in 1993. The Village was a Los Angeles homeless facility made up of geodesic domes conceived by architect Craig Chamberlain and with the corporate backing of ARCO. Cricket, remarkably enough, became a vehicle that the residents of that village used to fight addiction, create common purpose, and improve their lives.
Ultimately the village closed down, but cricket’s influence on the city of Los Angeles was just getting started.
In the mid-1990s, Hayes organized a youth cricket association in Compton, which we know today as the Compton Cricket Club. The original members of the team used cricket to steer their lives away from drugs and violence, travel internationally as foreign emissaries, meet royalty, and, oh yeah, learn how to play cricket.
Even today, the Compton Cricket Club is the only all American born cricket exhibition team in the world. And they have a pretty sweet mission.
“The aim of playing cricket is to teach people how to respect themselves and respect authority so they stop killing each other”
Well that sounds positive!
It’s a totally unexpected, but very cool story that I stumbled upon via the Grantland video embedded below.
Though I still don’t have a clue about cricket, I do feel like I learned something cool about Los Angeles.
Enjoy the vid.