One Sunday in October 2006 founders and Grand Mattresses for Life Bimbo by Day and Casual Friday hared the first bicycle hash in Tucson, Arizona. They decided to make the bash a monthly event with road bike friendly trails so that any hasher with a bicycle could participate. A few bashes later we named our new kennel the Pedalfiles Bicycle Hash House Harriers.
A few years ago Casual Friday moved to Tampa and Bimbo by Day went home to San Diego. Redheaded Woodpecker stepped in as GM in their absence, but then he moved away too, leaving your humble scribe to keep the bash going. Some of our bashes drew huge packs. Some were small. Once or twice, a hare dropped out at the last minute, but we almost always managed to find a last-minute substitute. We chugged along.
Two months ago Bimbo by Day called to remind me it had been almost ten years, and offered to fly back to Tucson to hare the OnOniversary bash in October. She called Casual Friday in Florida and talked her into coming too (it wasn’t hard convincing her). I consulted southern Arizona hash calendars and helped them pick a date, Sunday the 9th of October, and since neither one of them would have much time to practice, offered to scout potential trails ahead of time. Good thing, too, because the day before her flight Bimbo had a family emergency and couldn’t come after all, and I had to take her place. When Casual Friday and I took off Sunday morning, thank G, at least one of us knew the trail!
A big pack assembled at Shooter’s Steakhouse & Saloon, a favorite Pedalfiles hangout, at 10 AM on Sunday. After Arthur Gash blessed Casual Friday and me and sent us forth to mark trail, the pack rode after us in pursuit. We took them through Winterhaven, then south and west on mostly quiet residential streets and looped them behind the University Medical Center. Casual Friday, doing what she does best, laid a couple of long checkbacks to sow confusion and slow down the fast riders. The beer check was at another favorite hash hangout, the infamous Meet Rack.
When I scouted trail the door to the Meet Rack was open and I walked inside to ask the owner if he’d mind a bunch of bicycle hashers coming in Sunday morning around 11:30. The owner, a legendary local figure known as God, said bring it on, and I didn’t learn until later that he normally doesn’t open on Sundays until 6 PM. He did us a solid, opening up early for us, so all hail God!
Later that night Burning Bush and Pick’n'Flick told me God gave them a special tour of the Meet Rack’s S&M sex den, which is normally kept locked up. Damn, how’d I miss that? And damn, I’m glad our granddaughter Savvy Navigator on Trail, who came all the way from Las Vegas for the bash, missed it too!
For the on-in leg, Casual and I led the pack back north on 4th Avenue and Mountain Avenue to the Rillito bikeway and another checkback to St. Philip’s Plaza, then back to Shooter’s. Trail was 13 miles long, unless you fell for the checkbacks, in which case it was a good bit longer. At Shooter’s, we grabbed some tables on the patio and settled in for an OnOniversary celebration circle.
At the circle, I passed the torch to Arthur Gash, the Pedalfiles’ new GM. We honored Bimbo by Day in her absence and toasted Casual Friday, our guest hare and esteemed founder. We took photos to send to Bimbo, hoping she had wi-fi on her flight back to San Diego and would be able to see them on her cell phone while we were still at Shooter’s (she did, I was later told, and loved that we had such a huge turnout for the 10th OnOniversary). Thanks to everyone who came out for this special bash, especially the visiting bashers from Sierra Vista and Phoenix. We love your support, and hope you keep on visiting us!
Over the Pedalfiles’ first three years, we hurt a few bashers, some severely, all memorably: Kiwi Herman, Plush Toy, Dirty Sanchez, and Deep Dish. All four had to go to the hospital, two of them literally in ambulances. Those were tough times, not just for the injured but for Bimbo by Day and Casual Friday too, who wondered what we were doing wrong and tried to come up with some rules of thumb (yes, I know, there are no rules yadda yadda) to make our trails less dangerous.
They did and the bash got its act together: over the past seven years we haven’t had a single casualty. But on Sunday two bashers went down: Splat and Barbecue Cock. Splat put his foot down but there was no ground beneath it and over he went, no big deal; Barbecue Cock came off somewhat worse. She glanced at some children playing alongside the trail and rode smack into this pole, hurting herself pretty good, but she was game for on-afters (that’s Barbecue Cock in the group photo above, wearing orange & black). You gotta respect that. Well, at least we didn’t have to call 911!
So here’s to the Pedalfiles Bash, we’re true blue, we are bashers, through and through, we are pisspots, so they say, tried to go to heaven but went the other way! Here’s to all our regular bashers, all our once-in-a-while bashers, all our visiting bashers, and all the virgin bashers who have yet to try their first bicycle hash. Here’s to our hares, especially them! Here’s to our sainted founders and GMs for Life Bimbo by Day and Casual Friday! Here’s to our new GM, Arthur Gash! And here’s to another ten years—the countdown’s started for our 20th OnOniversary!
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