Half-Mind Weblog

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Pedalfiles Bash Trash: 3/19/17

On a beautiful and warm Sunday morning the pack—which included a large contingent of Monthly Cycle bashers from Sierra Vista—assembled at Serial Grillers on River Road for a bash trail laid by Spin Cycle and Just James.


Group grope at the start

Trail looped west and north from the start and after a little uphill led us to a beer check at a neighborhood park, where the refreshments included lime Eegees infused with Patrón tequila, in fitting with the green St. Patrick’s Day theme.


Selfie at the beer check

The second half of the trail was a bit shorter than the first because the hares decided at the last minute not to do a planned loop on the Rillito Bikeway, but instead take us on-in to the end. Before we repaired to Serial Grillers for on-afters, GM Arthur Gash formed a circle in the alleyway out back so that we could do something about Just James’ deplorable lack of a hash name. Behold our newest named member: Correctum Officer!


Namings: good clean fun!

At on-afters I heard Spin Cycle confess that she and Correctum Officer scouted trail beforehand, and that they put some thought into the best ways to get bashers across heavy car traffic on River Road. I want to include a note of thanks for taking the time and trouble to make sure we had an excellent and fun trail … good haring really shows.

Pick’n'Flick got on Facebook afterward to whinge about the tradition of beering and flouring in the naming circle. She was probably thinking about the time she went to work without noticing the crusted beer and flour in her hair, left over from a hash the day before. If only she’d soaked her head a little longer!


Hashing Straight, Ten Years Later

leprechaun-drunk-iconI gave up drinking ten years ago this month. Not sure if today’s the exact day, but marking the on-oniversary on Saint Patrick’s Day seems appropriate, so I’m going with it. Erin go bragh!

I came to hashing as a member of a profession with tight camaraderie and similar drinking and singing rituals, flying fighters for the USAF, and felt at home right from the start. As fellow hashers, I’m sure you’ll understand when I say that when I decided to quit drinking my biggest worry was whether I’d have to give up hashing.

Happily, once I quit the desire to drink went away too, and I was able to keep hashing. Being around alcohol is a huge problem for many recovering alcoholics; believe me I’m thankful it hasn’t been a problem for me. I quickly realized I didn’t like being around drunks, though. Not because they’re contagious, but because they remind me of my former self. So I came to a compromise: I still hash, but you won’t find me at the circle.

Non-drinking hashers are the exception, but we exist. Please think of us when you stock the coolers (I’ve been to some hashers where the only options were beer and beer).

I’ve noticed that most hashers my age drink a lot less than they used to. Over the past ten years I’ve gravitated to daytime hashes where there’s less of an emphasis on drinking. Currently I’m in a bicycle hash that meets and rides in the morning. After the rides we go to a pub for food and drink, strictly BYO$, so there’s no keg, no circle. It’s the perfect kind of hash for a non-drinking hasher. Matter of fact, there’s one tomorrow morning, and I’m looking forward to it.

One thing I know better than to do is to lecture my fellow hashers about the evils of drinking. We all have to find our own way on-in; I’m happy with the trail I’ve chosen and wish you well on yours. Happy Saint Patrick’s Day, everyone!


A Quilt of My Own

Pick’n'Flick’s sister Robin is here for a few days, and they’re putting a hash T-shirt quilt together for me. I’m pretty excited about it.


Pick’n'Flick’s been putting old hash shirts aside over the years. Actually, she and Robin are using backup shirts … they weren’t able to find the stack of shirts Pick’n'Flick meant to use. They’re around somewhere (we’ll probably find them as soon as this quilt is done), so maybe some day we’ll have two quilts.

I think the first hash T-shirt quilt Pick’n'Flick ever made was for Hasher Humper. She made one for Zippety Doo, and another for Upchuck & Die.* She’s done several embroidery projects for other hash friends. You’ll be happy to know her sister Robin is a hasher too … still a no-name, but so far only hashing hands have touched this new quilt.

When the quilt is done, it’ll have a binding (?), a backing, and on-on foot stitching. Here are three thumbnails of earlier quilts Pick’n'Flick made (click to see them larger). The models are Upchuck and Wet Toe Job.

IMG_2277 IMG_1838


One of Pick’n'Flick’s better ideas is to embroider the recipient’s hashing history on one panel of the quilt. Here’s mine.


I wasn’t sure how to describe my membership in special kennels like the Iguanas and the Fat Boys Athletic Club, so I wrote down “Honorary Member.” I mean, if you’re an Iguana you’re an Iguana, but somehow I don’t think it’s the same as being a member of your local weekly or monthly hash. And what about all the hashes I’ve run with as a visitor? There are too many to list, which is why we decided to go with “Countries Hashed.”

When the quilt is done I’ll post more photos.

*Without meaning to make light of it, I must note that Hasher Humper and Zippety Doo are now hashing with Gispert, and Upchuck & Die literally has the word “die” in his name. I can only pray there’s no curse attached to these lovely quilts!


Love the Bash, Hate the Name

Just putting this out there: I hate the name of Tucson’s bicycle hash kennel, the Pedalfiles. One, it’s misspelled (although that may be intentional). Two, it repels outsiders (if there’s one thing no one jokes about, it’s sex with children). Three, it has an impact on membership, discouraging recruits who haven’t been exposed to hash humor (I’ve experienced this first hand, talking to bicyclists who see us on trail and ask what we’re doing).

When I tell people about bashing, I avoid telling them the name of our group. I wonder, do other members feel the same way?

Discuss if you wish; comments are open.


Origins of On On?

Where does “On On” come from? Who knows? The only thing I’m fairly certain of is that it didn’t come from hashing.

A few years ago I got into an argument with another hasher. He insisted it was a hasher who first came up with the “Drinking Club with a Running Problem” motto, sometime in the 1970s. I said I didn’t think so, because if you Google “drinking club with a ______ problem” you’ll find drinking clubs with mountain climbing problems, drinking clubs with bicycling problems, drinking clubs with yachting problems, and so on.

The earliest documented use I’ve found dates back to 1946. “A Drinking Club with a Motorcycle Problem” appears on the patch of an early outlaw motorcycle club, the Boozefighters MC (the bikers who raised hell in Hollister, California in 1947, inspiring the 1953 Marlon Brando movie The Wild One). If you can find a quote from G or Torch Bennett or Horse Thomson where they used the motto in the late 1930s or early 1940s, I’ll reconsider. But as far as I know we never called ourselves a drinking club with a running problem before the 1970s.

The other day, after I wrote about Hash Haven, the online support group for hashers dealing with depression and suicidal thoughts, members there had a long debate about what many of them see as a hurtful, politically incorrect, and exclusionary motto used by some hash kennels: “No Poofters.” That never originated in the hash; it came from the 1970 Monty Python Bruces sketch. In the heyday of Monty Python, a lot of hashers thought the no poofters refrain was funny, and somehow it morphed into an unofficial motto.

How about “Rule Number One Is There Are No Rules”? It’s possible a hasher first said it, but if you Google it you’ll find it’s a widely used phrase. Thomas Edison allegedly said something similar in 1903: “Hell, there are no rules here. We’re trying to accomplish something.”

Okay, back to “On On.” This morning Chippendale sent me some information on the Royal Air Force’s 272 Squadron, which flew anti-submarine patrols from Scotland in WWI and long range shipping escort missions in the Mediterranean during WWII, and whose motto was … well, you’ll never guess:

272 squadron

The plaques and patches I looked up all say On On, but the linked history of the squadron says it was actually On, On! (with an exclamation point, which is how many hashers say it as well). Looking at the symbol of the armored knight, I can’t help wondering if the phrase dates back even farther … possibly even to the Crusades?

There’s no point to any of this, other than to say that the hash knows a good thing when it sees it and isn’t ashamed to borrow when necessary. On, On!


A Visit from St. Gispert

’Twas the night before Hashmas, and all through the land,
Hashers were stirring, the trail would be grand;
Their hash bags were stuffed in the B-Van with care,
In hopes our Grand Master soon would be there.

The harriettes were wrapped all snug in their sweats,
Speaking, as usual, like they all had Tourette’s;
And the wife in her Spandex, and I in my tux,
Were up for a trail, no matter how fucked.

When from the next lot there arose such a clatter,
We ran for the fence to see what was the matter,
Over barbed wire we hopped in a flash,
Ripped our shorts as we did–what the hell, it’s a hash.

The full moon shone down on a ragged tent city,
Inhabited by homeless, on whom we took pity,
When what to our wondering eyes should be there,
But our Grand Master–and dressed as a hare!

With a great big beer belly, and a tankard of lager,
I feared the GM would soon lead us to slaughter;
More rapid than bad news his co-hares they came,
And he guzzled, and belched, and called them by name:

“Now Magic! now, ZiPpY! now, Papoose and The Wolf!
On, Wilma! on, Groper!, on Bus Job and Psycho!
Through the worst of the shiggy, through valley and dale,
Now, hare away, hare away, lay us a trail!”

As after long circles dry heaves we do retch,
The hares sprinted off with nary a stretch,
And into the woods with their flour they flew,
While we sang Father Abraham, and Wanking Day too.

And then of a sudden, headlights loomed in the dark,
The pack watched in silence as an old Yugo did park;
Then from this rust-bucket there sprang with a hail,
Our Religious Advisor–who we thought was in jail.

He was dressed in hash rags from his head to his crotch,
And his clothes were all stained with drool and scotch,
His mouth it hung open in a great gaping leer,
And all four of his chins did glisten with beer.

A well-worn hash whistle he held tight in his teeth,
And his BO encircled the pack like a wreath;
Our long-missing Hash Shit he did clutch in his hand,
He looked like a refugee from some war-torn land.

His eyes, how bloodshot! His nostrils, how hairy!
His cheeks were all stubbled, like Yassur’s, how very;
His nose was all runny and his stomach did sag,
The way it rolled over his shorts, even Vax Headroom did gag.

He was a homeless camp reject, a man of no status,
Tooth Fairy did laugh while Zippity passed flatus;
And the droop of his eye, and the point of his head,
Soon gave us to know we had reason to dread.

He said not a word, but went straight to the tap,
And filled up his mug, the free-loading sap;
Then putting his thumb up one side of his nose,
Blew a great wad of snot, which he wiped on his clothes.

He took off down the trail, leaving us stunned,
It was hard to believe such a fat fuck could run;
But we heard him exclaim as he faded from sight,
“Happy Hashmas, dear harriers, and to all a good night!”

- Flying Booger dedicates A Visit from St. Gispert to all departed hashers.


Pedalfiles Bash Trash: 10/9/16


Bimbo by Day & Casual Friday

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!


Flying Booger & Casual Friday scouting 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.


The pack arriving at the Meet Rack


The hares with God, proprietor of the 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.


On-afters at Shooter’s (and that’s not even all of us, because some left early and some are in the bar)

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!


Death Pole 2016

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!


Pedalfiles Bash Trash: 9/25/16

Our scheduled hare, who scouted trail and even set up a special Facebook page for the bash, broke his bike the day before and had to ask Arthur Gash & You Gotta Fuck Me to Find Out to step in and lay trail. They did, using his original start location at Menlo Park on the west side but inventing their own trail. Gash & Fuck Me literally saved the day! Good thing, because bashers came from all over: Tucson, Sierra Vista, and even Phoenix. Here’s part of the pack at the start, just before the hares left:


Start at Menlo Park

After the hares left, at least that many more bashers showed up, including a few virgins. I didn’t get around to taking names … no way I could remember everyone … but there were more than 30 of us on trail!

Trail, starting at the foot Tumamoc as it did, didn’t go straight uphill but was instead flat and easy, and in no time at all we were in a shady alley behind the Dragoon Brewery at what I first thought was an old-school beer check, the kind where you hide a cooler of beer in a ditch and hope no one finds it before the pack gets there. Later I noticed the hares were mingling with the pack at the beer check, so maybe the cooler wasn’t hidden beforehand … but still, the vibe was old school and very very nice:


Beer check # 1

The second leg of the trail took us back south and eventually into downtown Tucson. There was a second beer check, this time behind the train station on the patio of Maynard’s … again, nice and shady. And I mean shady in a good way, with trees overhead. Did I mention it was a lovely cool morning, the first we’ve had since June? Perfect bashing conditions!

The third leg of trail took us back to the start at Menlo Park. Your scribe had to leave for home, so I can’t tell you what happened at on-afters, but I’m sure they were outstanding and that good times were had by all.

Here’s to the hares for pulling one out at the last minute, and here’s to all the bashers who rode Sunday.


Bimbo by Day & Casual Friday, Grand Mattresses

The Pedalfiles Bicycle Hash House Harrier club was founded in October 2006 by Grand Mattresses for Life Bimbo by Day and Casual Friday. Our 10th OnOniversary Bash is 10 AM on Sunday, October the 9th. Bimbo and Casual are flying in from San Diego and Tampa to hare this special bash, which will start at our first-ever bash house, Shooter’s Steakhouse. Details are posted on our Facebook page, and if you’re on our email list you’ll get messages as well.

Your scribe Flying Booger has been part of Pedalfiles mismanagement since the beginning, and has been more or less (mostly less) in charge since the first two GMs, and later GM #3, Redheaded Woodpecker, moved away. At the 10th OnOniversary Bash in October he’ll hand mismanagement over to Arthur Gash and You Gotta Fuck Me, who in his humble opinion and that of our previous GMs, will be perfect for the job.

See you all on October the 9th!