Hashing started in December 1938 in what is now Malaysia, when a group of British officers and expats began meeting on Monday nights to run after the British "paper chase" or "Hare and Hounds" game to rid themselves of the excesses of the previous weekend. Original members included Albert Stephen (AS) Gispert aka "G", Cecil Lee, Frederick Horse Thomson, Ronald Torch Bennett, and John Woodrow. A.S. Gispert suggested the name "Hash House Harriers" because the club where many of the original hashers lived and dined was known as the Hash House.
The constitution of the Hash House Harriers is:
- To promote physical fitness among our members
- To get rid of weekend hangovers
- To acquire a good thirst and satisfy it in beer
- To persuade the older members that they are not as old as they feel.
During World War II, hashers took a break from meeting to fight in the war, but after the war they reconvened. Sadly, A.S. Gispert was killed in the Japanese Invasion of Singapore in 1942. In 1962 Ian Cumming founded a second chapter in Singapore, and the idea spread throughout Asia, Europe, North America and more. Cumming was credited with bringing hashing to the US, founding the NYC hash, and just recently died on August 21, 2015.
The Ben Franklin Mob was started around 2004 and meets weekly on Thursdays in all weather conditions - rain, shine, snow, heat, etc. If you don't want to run in the weather, we still encourage you to come and autohash (not run but just drink and circle with us). We typically run A to A (start and end at the same place) unless we let you know ahead of time. Our hares are chosen most weeks by short straw draw, so you never know if your time is up! The hare(s) is/are given about a 10 minute head start and a bag of flour to go lay a trail. If you have never hared before we will try to pair you with an experienced hare. See the Haring Guide for more info! The pack works together to solve the trail - checking all the marks and calling out to one another which directions are True or Bad trail. We don't wear headphones when we run so we can hear each other and it's a very fun social game as well as a fun run and great bonding experience. You never know where you will end up on trail but you will almost always end up at the same place you started (if you get really lost from everyone).
RULES (WHAT RULES?!)
So there aren’t supposed to be “rules” when Hashing, and for the most part this is true, but because we live in a harsh hash world, we at the BFM have decided to layout our traditions so that younger or visitor hashers don’t inadvertently cause issues with our community… specially with the people that give us great deals on beer!
We think these are obvious to most of the population, but some people are just, well… special enough that they may need a refresher.
- Yes means yes, everything else probably means no. Don’t be fooled by the “No means no”, at the hash, if you want to fondle that tall lanky dude just give him a little heads up, and if he agrees, go for it.
- The option is special, don’t dilute it by being a naked jackass. Yes, you’re welcome to show us your joke when appropriate, but please for the love of Cause DON’T prance around naked because you have daddy (or any other) issues.
- Picture are banned from the BFM once circle begins, unless they are taken by a mismanagement designated Hash-Flash. We have many members in sensitive occupations and they may risk their employment if they have inappropriate images online. To eliminate this risk we are banning photo taking after the run and in "circle".
- Bars are our friends; you, maybe not so much. So we love Philly bars, and we regularly take the hash to places that we actually want to go back to. Don’t be that jackass that gets kicked out, and don’t piss them off. This includes glitter.
- Illegal is illegal, the hash wants no part of it! Seriously, if you do something blatantly against the law, it’s on you and the hash probably won’t want you to come back.
- Don’t piss our neighbors off. We live in a big city and if we piss off the wrong people, our freedoms may be curtailed by law enforcement or other organizations.
So you’re a wanker and think the BFM is a bitch because they are the only hash that has these “traditions”. Think again, here are some other kennels expectations: