Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Whazzuuup?! This is my "hash" group. We are the Lost Lake Hash House Harriers, and we are a drinking club with a running problem. That's right, folks. We drink Near Beer (and Gatorade), and we run around at night blowing whistles and following a trail marked in flour. It's all fun and games until somebody twists an ankle in the dark, but we know the risks. Muwahahahahaaaaaa...
Last Sunday, I finally got up the gumption to go and rejoin my hash group for a run around Camp Slayer. I have been skipping out on the run for weeks and weeks, for no good reason other than it cuts into my "chat with Dave" time, and I have been labeled as a backslider as a result. Now I am fighting to polish my tarnished name, and my first attempt at kissing the group's collective butt was to bring my camera to our St. Patty's hash and take photos to share with everybody. I think it's working.
Hashing is like a cult, and the cult exists all around the world, wherever people are familiar with running and beer. Now, kids, I am NOT suggesting that drinking beer is a good idea. Nor am I suggesting that it is cool. I'm not even suggesting that RUNNING is a good idea, or that it is cool. All I'm suggesting is that if you're going to run, it is often much more fun in a group, and if that group happens to be drinking beer, then so be it.
FOR THE RECORD: My hash group does not actually drink beer. Nobody is allowed to drink aboard the U.S. base, because drinking is evil and wicked, and it is too dangerous to have alcohol in close proximity to weapons. So we drink near beer, and I imagine the only reason we bother with the wretched stuff is to uphold some semblance of hashing tradition for tradition's sake.
One of the other traditions we uphold is singing stupid songs and giving people stupid nicknames. Once you receive a hash nickname, you are stuck with it for eternity. It follows you to every hash group you join. Remember I said hashing is everywhere? Well, it is. Just about all military bases have a hash group, no matter where in the world the base is, unless the town in which the base is located has a club of its own. Hashers claim they are not really runners, and they say they do not run for "health." I have found it difficult to come to terms with that, and it's part of the reason for my backsliding. But I am learning to relax a bit, and I don't even mind now when they call me a "raceist" (one who runs in actual races for the purpose of actually competing and actually running fast, for fun).
I cannot share any of the stupid nicknames on this blog, because they are all very nasty. They are X-rated, in other words. This is another reason I became a backslider. The stupid songs we sing are very nasty, and the nicknames are all very nasty, and everything about the hash is altogether nasty. But I am, again, learning how to relax, and that stuff isn't bothering me as much now. I need the hash, because I am bored here in Iraq, and I need distractions other than work and working out. I need social activities, and the hash provides that. I love my fellow hashers, and I am thankful for the Lost Lake Hash House Harriers. I promise not to backslide again. I'm a hasher for life, and there's no better home hash than L2H3. On-On!!!


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