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When Rituals Become Rules (Part III)

I’m okay with ritual.  It’s rules I don’t like.  In previous entries (here and here) I’ve ranted against the ossification of my home hash’s circle routine, but I may have given the impression I’m against routine altogether, and that’s not true.  I’m okay with routine.  Hashers like it, and it gives the circle structure.

When I was GM of the Okinawa HHH, I followed the same order of down-downs at nearly every circle: honor to the hares, honor to visitors, welcome to virgins, awarding of the hash shit, punishment of violations.  Yeah, routine – ritual – can be a good thing.

What got me thinking about this subject again was this letter:

Hi Booger!

I have searched through some of the hash sites looking for the demo down-down speech.  Can you tell me where to find it?  Thanks in advance for your help!

On On,

In my experience, most GMs give virgin hashers instructions before they do their first down-down, but how many hashes, I wonder, call up an experienced hasher first to demonstrate a down-down to the virgins?  I actually like this bit of ritual, and if I’m ever crazy enough to start another hash, I’ll certainly incorporate it.

Oh, by the way, here’s my version of the demo down-down speech:

__________ is going to demonstrate how to do a down-down.  The pack is going to sing him a song.  When they start singing “drink it down down down down” he’ll raise the vessel to his lips and drink.  He won’t remove the vessel from his lips until all the beer is gone.  He shows the pack the vessel is empty by inverting it over his cranium.  If there’s any beer left in the vessel, it goes over his HEAD (ritual chanting occurs).  Got it?  Okay, now watch.  Your down-down is coming next.

Of course, there may be times when you want the virgins to screw up down-downs, so that you can punish their sponsors.  And that’s where you need to keep some flexibility in your circle routine.  When it’s the exact same thing, week after week, pretty soon the more intelligent hashers quit paying attention.

© 2006 – 2008, Flying Booger. All rights reserved.

About Flying Booger  Hash House Harrier, man about town.


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