Half-Mind Weblog

portrait_3 copy A Hash House Harrier weblog by Flying Booger, a hasher living in Tucson, Arizona
The Half-Mind Weblog is a Gang of Six™ Production




© 2004-2015 Paul Woodford. All rights reserved.

PISS Hash Trash: 6/7/15

A small pack met at Columbus Park on Tucson’s west side early this morning for yet another 69th running of the Pima Independent Sunday Social Hash. Our hare was Wankers Aweigh, our head of on-after festivities Hot Legs, and there to do trail were Yoda & Appendage, Master Meat Finder, Flying Booger & Pick’n'Flick, Half Hash with his sons Thor & Son of a Beach, and the rarely-seen Doggie Style with her first-timer daughter Claire.


Why is everyone is the shade?

Your scribe wishes he could tell you about trail, but since he was never on it he can’t. A series of guesses based on decades of hashing experience all turned out to be wrong: he went south when he should have gone north; the hare, alas, did not cut back through the shiggy to the west of trail as logic dictated he must; in short your scribe wound up hiking alone in the shiggy for 50 minutes and by some miracle found his way back to the start. The pack, meanwhile, enjoyed a well-laid trail with bike paths and even a water crossing.


Yes there was too water on today’s trail!

After everyone was back at the A, we caravanned over to Wankers & Hot Leg’s house for the circle & on-afters. Hot Legs served beverages and eggs Benedict, and Flying Booger presided over a short circle. Today’s honorees included Yoda & Appendage, who were married this day 13 years ago; our hare Wankers & hostess Hot Legs; and Doggie Style, who might have shown up for a PISS hash 10 years ago but hadn’t been seen at one since. And since Doggie shows up so rarely, we figured we’d better slap a hash name on her daughter Claire because who knows when we’ll see that kid next … as a teenager, maybe? Henceforth and forevermore, the tiny hasher once known as “Claire” shall be known to hashdom as “Hiney Butt.”

You know what? I hope she does come back as a teenager … I can’t wait to see her cringe when we all say “Hi, Hiney Butt!”


How did I know it was their anniversary? Dear reader, I married them!

Special thanks are due to Master Meat Finder and Hot Legs, who secretly prepared gifts and a cake for the on-oniversary couple, who, by the way, have been hashing since the day they met. We are not worthy!

With the running of the June trail, the Pima Independent Sunday Social Hash House Harriers is going on its summer break. See you in September or October, as soon as it cools down again!


Notice What’s Missing?

Here’s a screen grab of a EuroWeekly story about hashing in Rota, Spain.

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You can click on it to read the whole piece, but it’s so short I’ll just quote it in full and save you the click:

IN case you ever wondered, hashing is a brisk walk or run through the country or villages with a group of people who like to get out, keep fit and explore. There are just a few essentials: a good pair of trainers, a reasonable level of fitness and a sense of humour.

Axarquia Hash House Harriers (AH3) meets every second Sunday at different venues throughout the area, where members take turns acting as ‘Hares.’ This involves the Hare laying a trail of flour as it scurries through the countryside, followed by the rest of the hash.

The trail, which takes about two hours and eventually leads back to the start, can be walked, jogged, or run along the route according to your ability and inclination. To liven things up, the hares may even include some false paths and dead ends.

To revitalise flagging hashers, a stop for beer, soft drinks and crisps is included along the way. After the hash the runners typically head to a nearby restaurant for a late lunch.

If it’s your first hash you can be sure of a warm welcome at AH3. They will explain what the various flour markings mean before setting off. They’ve not lost anyone yet! In the summer the hash is shorter and easier and the quantity of drinks is increased to keep everyone hydrated in the hotter weather.

For more information on AH3 and details of the next hash go to: www.ah3.es

What I like about this short description of hashing is its emphasis on trail and the social aspects of hashing, and the friendly invitation it offers to interested runners, joggers, and walkers. Yes, the article mentions beer, an essential ingredient of hashing, but nowhere does the off-putting phrase “a drinking club with a running problem” appear.

When people ask me about hashing, this is the kind of pitch I give them. Unless they’re obviously wrong for hashing, I want them to come out and do a trail. I don’t want to scare them off before they’ve even tried hashing; I don’t want them to prejudge us. To me, this article hits all the right notes.

More of this, please.


Close Encounters

Hashers and civilians clash from time to time. Here’s an example from earlier this year:

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The man who made this accusatory video encountered members and guests of the Rumson Hash House Harriers in New Jersey’s Great Dismal Swamp. He accuses hashers of trespassing, damaging property, and being so drunk they couldn’t understand what he was telling them. I think any fair-minded person, after watching the video, would wonder what the hell this guy’s talking about. The hashers in the video seem unusually sober and well-behaved to me!

The nastiest part of the video is the Star Wars-style scrolling text at the end, where the ranch manager demands the names of the hares and all the participants. If you can get through that without wanting to tell the guy to go fuck himself, you’re a better person than me.

I really admire the restraint exhibited by the Rumson hasher who responded to this asshole’s accusations:

 To Edison Wetlands and neighbors

I am sorry if some of the runners got lost during the trail run. The run was located in public parks, grounds and roads. No portion of the run was on the Edison Wetlands. This run has been held every year since 1995. We ask all the runners to bring canned goods for Hands of Hope St. James Food Pantry.

Hikers, trail runners, bird watchers and others often get lost in the woods. I have supported Middlesex Greenway, Edison Wetlands and other community groups over the past 20 years. I was not near Triple C Ranch and Nature Center Edison Wetlands on January 3 so I can’t comment on actions of a limited group of runners. Some of your statements are not true.
I am surprised by your comments since we have had the run previously at Triple C Ranch. I did not direct anyone on property. I left several messages for you prior to Jan 3 to advise the runners would run on the Tyler road past the ranch. Runners promote seeing wooded areas saved from development. We look to continue to have events to help Hands of Hope St. James Food Bank as we have had for many years.

Again, sorry if runners were lost and went the wrong way on the trail, which primarily was along the old railroad bed/future extension of Middlesex Greenway. We will ask future runners to stay off private property.

I previously helped your group at your request by publicizing your zombie run. We will help promote your running events in the future if requested.

One of the runners indicated he looked up how much land Edison Wetlands Association actually owns at Dismal Swamp. I could only find that they own a 4.55-acre tract. All of the other preserved land there was paid for by non-profits (NY-NJ Baykeeper, NJ Audubon Society), Middlesex County and some of the various townships (Edison, Metuchen and South Plainfield). All those woods are public open space. Boy scouts, bird watchers and mountain bikers often use the same trails.

I have a bit of a different reaction to this close encounter story, which appeared earlier today in a British newspaper:

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click image to read the article

More than likely, the hashers who ran across farm property in England weren’t any rowdier or drunker than the hashers in the Great Dismal Swamp. But it does appear they frightened some livestock. In one encounter with hashers, a ewe jumped a fence and broke its leg. In another, a calf was so frightened it ran away and had to be put down … at least according to the farmer.

We haven’t heard the hashers’ side of the story on these UK incidents, but I notice the journalist zeroed right in on that fucking “drinking club with a running problem” thing too many of us parrot.

I don’t really have an editorial stand on all this. Very few hashers I know would deliberately lay trail past a “no trespassing” sign or across a farmer’s field. But sometimes just being in the general vicinity of someone’s private property is enough to set off alarms, and there’s not much we can do about that.

Civilians will never get hashing or hashers. Nevertheless, I don’t want them to get so upset they start passing laws against our favorite pastime.


Hashy Links

For some reason the San Diego news channel that owns this video disabled embedding. Clicking on the image will open the video on their web site. Trust me, it’s worth the click!

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And now for something completely different …

Somehow I got on the mailing list for the brilliant Stockholm Absolut Hash House Harriers’ Hash Trash (which, thoughtfully, is written in English). Local hashers probably get it in printed form, but it comes to me as a monthly e-pub.

I don’t have a count of how many hash kennels publish a hash trash. I have a vague impression that hash trashes have disappeared, or never existed in the first place, in many USA kennels, but that they’re still popular in other countries. But hey, I could be wrong about that. I write hash trashes for local kennels here in Tucson, and my friend Tongueless writes one for the Gypsies in the Palace H3 in San Francisco.

Some say hash names were invented so that real names wouldn’t appear in print, lest hash trashes fall into the wrong hands. I choose to believe this rumor. True or not, it makes perfect hash sense.

Sadly, whether or not your kennel has a hash trash often comes down to having just the right hasher in the group, someone with the time, talent, and motivation to put one out … but everyone, in my experience, loves to read a good trash. I think the hasher responsible for Stockholm Absolut H3′s is Malibog, and I salute him! Click & enjoy.

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SWP Strikes Again! (Updated 5/19/15)

Meanwhile, in Belfast:

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Another entry in the Suspicious White Powder files! Click on the screenshot to read the full story.

Update (5/19/15): A day later and the mystery has only deepened!


Pedalfiles Bash Trash: 5/17/15

20150517_111929Hash Jive & Pearl of the Andes’ Inca Trail II was everything the pack had hoped for … and feared … and then some. Trail started in the Basha’s parking lot on Kolb and Sunrise, up in the foothills of the Santa Catalinas. If anyone thought beforehand there wouldn’t be hills, they knew better by the time they arrived at the start, which was surrounded by the damn things.

We paused for the group photo you see below before Hash Jive and Pearl strapped on their flour bags and mounted their bicycles. Present and accounted for were Wankers Aweigh, Loose Nut, Arthur Gash, Fuck Me, Flying Booger, Pick’n'Flick, Green Flagger, Snot Rocket, and a first-timer from the jHavelina H3, Two Fingers.

After giving the hares their token head start, the pack took off on trail, heading south and west into the hills. There were several up sections, but overall the first part of trail went gradually down, then steeply down, an ominous sign on an A to A trail because you know what goes down must eventually come up, but hey, it was fun while it lasted, and it lasted a long time, all the way to the dry riverbed we call the Rillito, where we rode west and then back east along the north and south banks.

Most of the pack made it to the Rillito, I should clarify. Unknown to us, Pick’n'Flick and Snot Rocket had lagged behind, and thus Pick’n'Flick was able to snag the hares as they began to lay trail uphill from the Rillito. As for the rest of us, we were following trail along the Rillito, hurrying to find flour before the ground squirrels ate it all.


Hares (left) & some of the pack at the start


Local wildlife recycling trail

Along the way we began to pass trail marks that didn’t look like they were laid by our hares. It turned out Inca Trail II crossed portions of yesterday’s jHavelina H3 trail, which had been laid by Two Fingers, so she was able to keep us from getting confused. Later on the south bank of the Rillito, Inca Trail II crossed parts of the PISS H3 trail I had laid two Sundays back. This town is getting too small for all the hashes in it!

Still, we managed to follow the correct trail, which had penguins to distinguish it. I thought maybe penguins were an Inca thing, but it turned out the hares drew them for Arthur Gash. Yeah, I’m confused too. It’s a Gash thing.


One of the hares’ penguins, guiding Arthur Gash toward the beer check

As we started back up from the Rillito (we had no idea just how much uphill was still to come) we followed Beer Near marks into a shopping center parking lot, where the hares, along with their captor Pick’n'Flick, were waiting for us on a restaurant patio. Talk about your upscale beer check: linen napkins and table service and all. I could get into this Inca thing!


Hash Jive & Pearl’s fancy beer check

Since we had ridden eight miles by this point, we decided to ride back to the start with the hares. After all, it was less than three miles back, according to our treacherous hares. And that’s where the Incas got their revenge, because it was up, up, up all the way back. I for one have never worked so hard on a bicycle. Fuck me pedaled so hard she shredded her chain and had to be rescued by a total stranger with a pickup truck. And it was a bit more than three miles back to the start, as it turned out: my finishing mileage was just under fourteen.

But hey, we all made it back, and no one cheated by taking a ride from Loose Nut, who beat us all back to the start and then doubled back on trail in his van, offering to rescue anyone who was near death. On-afters were at the Risky Business pub next to Basha’s, where we were joined by Zorro, who broke his bike and couldn’t make the actual trail.

Inca Trail II was a truly shitty trail. Thank you, Hash Jive and Pearl of the Andes!

Arthur Gash & Fuck Me will hare the June Pedalfiles, and Loose Nut is doing July. Stand by for announcements and details!



PISS Hash Trash: 5/3/15

Another good turnout for the PISS Hash, even though it’s starting to get hot in southern Arizona:


Gracing the parking lot of Bashas’ Supermarket this morning were the hares, DFB, Bareassed Her, & Flying Booger. The pursuing pack consisted of Half Hash with sons Thor & SonofaBeach, Hot Legs & Wankers Aweigh, CD & Tucson Slew, H.M.Ho, Pick’n'Flick, Zorro, Zorro’s Other Mark, Yoda & Appendage, Master Meat Finder and her virgin guest NHN Martha.

Trail was short and mostly followed hiking and riding paths along the Rillito, leading to a beer check in a small park on the south bank near Columbus, where DFB & Bareassed Her provided mimosas, bellinis, beer, and soft drinks. The on-in portion of the trail led the pack to the home of DFB & Bareassed Her’s son, who thankfully wasn’t home to see the mess we made of his kitchen. We don’t often do A-to-B trails in the PISS Hash, but this one was laid out so that it formed about two-thirds of a circle, with the on-in only a half-mile from the on-out.

Barrassed Her drove members of the pack back to Bashas’ to fetch cars and the food they’d brought along to share, while DFB flipped pancakes in the kitchen. When everyone was back at the on-in, we ate and drank and talked and had so much fun the circle almost didn’t happen, but Flying Booger remembered long enough to lead a down-down for Virgin Martha, who got the idea of chugging her beverage right off the bat. She’s a natural, and we told her to look up the kennel in Des Moines when she gets home.

Hot Legs & Wankers Aweigh will be our hares in June. The date for next month’s PISS Hash is Sunday, June 7th, and due to the increasing heat start time will be 8:30 a.m. We’ll meet at the hares’ house on the west side. Directions and additional info will be coming soon, so keep an eye on our Facebook page.

Thanks to everyone for coming out today and braving the heat. It was a good hash and an even better crowd, and that’s what the PISS Hash is all about. On-on to June!



In the News: Missing Hashers (Updated)

Rescue forces on Guam were called in last night to search for an overdue hasher. If I remember correctly, Guam hashes at 4:00 p.m. every Saturday; according to the article someone called the Guam Fire Department at 8:30 p.m. and the missing hasher was found at 10:40 p.m. The hasher was taken to a hospital, but I don’t know if the hasher was injured or if the trip to the hospital was merely precautionary.

Last year Guam rescue personnel searched for, and eventually found, as many as 70 hashers who had gone missing on a single trail (there’s some dispute over the number who were actually lost). The rescue effort went on into the wee hours of the next day, and eventually everyone was found.

When I was GM of Okinawa H3, sometime in 1990 or 1991, an Air Force guy running with Guam H3 died of heat exhaustion on trail. I remember worrying that something similar could happen on Okinawa, which is almost as hot and humid as Guam.

I guess what I’m saying is if you visit Guam and go hashing, bring water, sunscreen, and an emergency locator beacon.

No, seriously, what I’m saying is that in some big hashes I’ve run with, a missing hasher could easily be overlooked. And if no one knows you’re still out in the shiggy, no one will come searching for you. That’s why, at least in a big hash, it’s important to check the sign-in sheet and do a head count at the on-in. Guam obviously does this, and they don’t hesitate to call in rescue forces when hashers go missing, so good on them!

Are there any Guam hashers reading this who can provide more details?

Update (5/6/15): Ask and ye shall receive … a Guam hasher fills us in on the details of this and earlier incidents in the comments section!