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Hash House Harriers, 2011 Edition

Chapter 2
The Hashing Spirit

Regardless of the style of the hash, all is in good fun and this "drinking club with a running problem" welcomes all with a sense of humor. Hashing has created a fraternity that knows no geographical bounds of hospitality. You're as welcome at one group as another, although there are still a few traditional ‘all male', fewer ‘harriette' and even more rare ‘by membership' or ‘social status' only groups left out there. The only prerequisite to hashing is a sense of humor, as running and athletic ability usually take a back seat to the social aspects of the sport. As reportedly coined by Hong Kong hasher Phil Kirkland and stated in hash flyers frequently:

"If you've half a mind to join the hash,
that's all you need!"

Hashing also knows no age boundaries, with family hashes and horrors or children's hashes, as well as members from all ages in the regular hashes. There are hashers like "Papa Bear" of the Huachuca Hash House Harriers and others who have actively hashed in their seventies or even older. For a funny treatment of the variety of hashing, skip to the bottom of the page for the Hash Rating System. Just remember, it is a spoof and not a reality of hashing.

One hasher from the Honolulu Hawaii Hash House Harriers confided a story to me at their On-In when I was visiting in 1982. He was in his sixties and spoke of having a heart attack a couple of years back. He stated that while he was lying in his hospital bed he had just about given up on living, when here comes a group of hashers smuggling a six-pack of beer into his room. They were urging him to hurry up and get out so he could get into shape for the Honolulu marathon a few months away. Their joy for living encouraged him to do just that, he said. He was very proud of the fact that, although it took him over five hours, he did finish that marathon and he owes his life to the Hash.

The only main difference between groups is their emphasis on the sporting versus social aspects of hashing. Some choose to maintain the tradition of a live hare hash, chasing runners while they lay trail after a few minutes head start. They thrill in the hunt, the occasional catch and the notion that there is a real pursuit in progress during the event.

Other hashes have shunned the competitive nature of the live hare hashes, pre-laying the trail with a number of marks designed to keep the pack together. These gathering checks and other delaying marks allow the hashers of the dead hare hashes to sing and make merry from point to point, emphasizing the social aspects of the sport.

All of the hashes end with a bit of fraternity business at the On-In or finish point. The Down-Down celebrates new runners, various landmarks in the careers of hashers, and assorted other reasons to drink beer or their favorite beverage. Most hashes also add bawdy song to the festivities and there are special event runs that may end in a feast and a party as well. Interhashes, or gatherings of several hashes for a special event, occur at frequent intervals worldwide. There are national and regional interhashes, as well as a world event simply labeled Interhash. (A complete calendar of these events can be found in the Global Trash Future Tortures section of the magazine or The Worldwide HHH Home Page.)

Regardless of the tradition that a hasher originally adopted, the spirit of hashing is alive and well at interhashes. Of course, there's the usual bitching and moaning from the virgin, or relatively virgin, interhashers, who find it difficult to accept the traditions of others. (We all go through it!) But those who have attended a few interhashes relish the endless variety of trails and traditions found throughout the hash world. You begin to look forward to the challenge of learning and remembering each new chalk talk as you experience new trails and scenery. The important thing is that we are all Hash brothers and sisters sharing an experience like no other, and in the sharing, we are all enriched with...

The Hashing Spirit

(Hash Rating System after picture)

(A little humor reprinted from Global Trash magazine, February 1994. Most hashes fall into the G to PG-13 categories, though there is a trend towards more adult hashes with variations of the R and NC-17 categories. I have never heard of a completely X hash yet, this is a joke and not the real hash. Although, the singing, all nudity and isolated cases of wierd sex habits have been tried at adult hashes. Original version attributed to ZiPpY of Pikes Peak HHH and PlayDoh Penis of Gainesville HHH.) G
  • Beer and snacks, sodas for non-drinkers, names like Fuzzy Wuzzy, songs like "He's a Hasher, He's True Blue", new shoes okay, hash over in two hours.
  • PG
  • Cases of beer, names like Tit's 'R' Us, songs like "Yogi Bear", drink for new shoes, isolated mooning, hash over in four hours.
  • PG-13
  • Keg of beer, names like Penis Breath, songs like the "Limerick Song", drink from new shoes, coed group mooning, hash over in six hours.
  • R
  • Multiple kegs, names like Mother's Little Dildo, songs like "Fuck the Giant Penis", new shoes thrown in bonfire, exposed tits and limited frontal nudity, hash over when you have to go to work.
  • NC-17
  • Unlimited beer for $2.00, names like Take It Up the Ass Like a Man, songs like "The S & M Man", no shoes allowed, nude trails, sex in dark corners, urination on passed-out hashers, hash over when you call in sick.
  • X
  • Break into a liquor store for Down Downs; names that draw smoking lightening bolts from the sky and tend to turn their utterers into pillars of salt; songs about fucking relatives, dead people and animals; compulsory nudity; actual sex with shoes, persons of various genders, or creatures of another species; hash over when they lock the paddy wagon door.

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