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Frequently Asked Questions

Shamelessly copied from Lion City Hash House Harriers FAQ, thanks.

Singapore Hash House Harriets is an adult-only (18 years and above) ladies club that allows men to run and join the club as associate members.

Visitors under 18 years of age will be turned away.

How do I get to the run-site?
Can anyone just go and join a hash run?
How much are the guest fees?
How long are the runs?
What should I bring?
What time should I be at the run-site?
And finally, what is Hashing?
  1. How do I get to the run-site?

    If you have your own mode of transportation, refer to the given map reference, run-site location, and use the latest Singapore Street Directory (you can buy one at most gas stations) to guide you there. That's how all the regular hashers find the run-site.

    If you can't find someone to give you a ride, use the local taxi service. Most taxi drivers have, at one time or another, taken someone to a hash run so most of them know what to expect. Again, use the given map reference and run-site location, and depend on the latest Street Directory.

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  2. Can anyone just go and join a hash run?

    Yes, provided you introduce yourself and register with the Hash Cash at the beginning of the run.

    If you absolutely don't know a soul, turn on your charm and chat up someone who looks like a member. Maybe he/she will do the necessary introduction for you. It's extremely informal, so relax. Some of the committee members have their picture on the Committee page, so you could use that as a guide.

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  3. How much are the guest fees?

    S$20 for ladies and S$25 for men.

    The amount paid entitles the guest to the run and all the liquid refreshments he/she can consume after the run and during the circle, until the circle is declared over. Good deal, huh?

    Members' quarterly subscriptions are S$140 for men and S$110 for ladies if you wish to join.

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  4. How long are the runs?

    A well-laid run should take an hour. The fastest runners and the slowest joggers should come back within minutes of each other.

    • And how is that possible?

      Good hares make sure there are sufficient false trails, tough checks, and loops to fool the front runners enough so that the back runners will always have a chance to catch up. Of course, I am referring to an ideal scenario. We always try to keep all runs to the hour but this is not a perfect world. Not to worry, you'll be pleasantly surprised at how well you can manage a hash run even if you think jogging 3km is a major event.

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  5. What should I bring?

    A change of clothes, a towel, some bottles of water to wash up with, fresh footwear, some plastic bags to dump your dirty stuff, some money for guest fees and the on-on (dinner after the run), and a huge sense of humour and adventure.

  6. Is my stuff safe at the run-site?

    Most of the hashers come to the run-site directly from their offices, usually lugging their laptops, files, etc. There is an average of 10 cars at each run, and the standard practice is to stash your valuables in a fellow-hasher's trunk (boot). If unfamiliar, the first people you should seek out upon arriving at the run-site are the Hash Cash, Grand Mistress, or any committee member who will be more than happy to direct you to a safe storage for your stuff. It's a great way to make immediate friends as well.

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  7. What time should I be at the run-site?

    The runs start promptly at 1800hrs (that's 6pm to the masses). Be at the run-site by 1730hrs (5:30pm) for registration with the Hash Cash and maybe some mutual back-slapping exercises.

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  8. And finally, what is Hashing?

    The hash run is designed for a group of individuals (the "Pack" or "Hash") to follow a trail (true or false) created by two or three other individuals (the "Hares") from a start point to a finish point.

    The distance varies from 7-10 km and the finishing point is usually the starting point, though not always so.  The ideal duration for the entire hash run should be 60 minutes, with the slowest runners coming in within 5 minutes of the fastest runners.

    Some runs are called "bus runs". In this case, all runners will either start off the run and continue until some far off end point. There, there will be the welcome sight of a bus and beer to bring the pack back to the starting point (Bus Back Run). Alternatively, the runners will be bussed to a far away starting point run back to the meeting point which then becomes the end point (Bus Out Run).

    Most times the run is set in the a few hours before the run. If it is an evening run the hares will set it sometime in the early afternoon.

    Another form of laying the run is called the "Live Hare Run". In this variation, the hares run out in advance of the pack and set a course.

    In either case, the course is marked by hash marks: splashes of white flour, toilet paper (biodegradable), and chalk marks. Traditionally, hash marks were uniformly-cut rectangles of paper liberally scattered in clumps along the trail. Over the years, the Hash House Harriers recognised the need to keep their activities environmentally-friendly and the traditional “hash paper” was phased out.

    In a Live Hare Run, the hares get a 15 minute head start and the pack will follow their trail and try to catch the hares. If one or more of the hares are caught, they are penalized by having to perform a "down-down."

    The Hash House Harriers pride themselves as a “drinking club with a running problem”. Based on that creed, every Hash Run should be viewed upon as a game rather than an outright race.

    Serious runners have the rest of the week to compete in other official events, but in a Hash Run, every runner’s aim should be to try to second-guess the Hares. The Hares, on the other hand, should always try their best to out-smart the pack when they design their route.

    Racing on the Hash is just not “On”. It is strictly a social event.

    The Rules

    Rule #1           There are no rules.

    Rule #2           When in doubt, refer to Rule #1.

    The Run

    For the Live Hare Run, the hares are given a head start of fifteen (15) minutes prior to the pack starting.

    The Hash will walk three (3) minutes and start running at the eighteenth (18th) minutes. The Grandmaster (or a ranking committee member) will call “On On” to start the run.

    On the non-Live Hare Run (in general, over 95% of all hash runs are of this format), the run will commence promptly at the designated time without delay usually with a committee member calling out "On On". When running a hash the Pack should work together to find the actual trail thus making the outing an enjoyable run for all involved.

    Always bear in mind that the Hash was designed for people of all levels of fitness and ages. Some older hashers may choose to walk/jog the trail. A wide-spectrum of running abilities must be catered for in designing a decent hash run.

    When a mark made by the Hare(s) is spotted (distance between marks should be no more than 50-100 meters) the individual will yell "On On!", alerting the rest of the Pack that the trail is found.

    When a "check or decision point" (or intersection) is discovered the hashers should fan out in all directions to “check” (seek out the trail). The rest of the Pack may yell “Are You?” inquiring whether you have found the trail yet. If not, you yell back “Checking!” or “Off Paper!”. This “check” is normally a circle (of flour or chalk mark) which signifies that from that point on, the true trail may go in any direction, even backwards.

    If there is a "T-Check" (Back Check/Track, or False Trail) spotted, the individual crosses his or her arms in an X pattern over his or her head and shouts "Back Check" or "False Trail" or "T-Check", alerting the pack to return to the last check/decision point and start searching for the true trail from there. This “T-Check” is a line (of flour or chalk mark) drawn across the trail with a trailing perpendicular line towards from where the pack came. A letter “T”.

    This procedure is followed until the true trail is found. A good hash run should have at least 5 good checks to keep the Pack together.

    Be attentive for hash marks; they can be on the road, sidewalk, telephone poles, curbs, trees, signs, building, fences, under vehicles, walls and other structures.

    The fitter and faster runners in front (Front Running Bastards or FRBs) should “break the check” as soon as they have found the true trail by creating fresh hash marks leading in the right direction from a broken check. This will help the slower runners when they happen upon that check after the FRBs have gone by.

    Short-cutting is leaving the trail and trying to find the trail by a shorter distance. Such individuals are called SCBs - Short Cutting Bastards. These individuals stand a very good chance of getting lost in trying to second-guess the Hares. Short-cutting is encouraged but only recommended for the more seasoned hashers. When asked by the Pack if you are “On”, the SCB must yell “Off Paper! Short-cutting!”.  Follow SCBs at your own risk.  Until you are seasoned, make SURE you stay with a seasoned hasher so you don't get lost.

    When the home trail (end of the run) is found by the Pack, they can expect to see the proud Hares waiting and with refreshments for the Circle ceremony.

    The Circle…..or Down-Down Ceremony

    This is where the fun begins on every hash run.

    After the last runner has come in, excluding those who are Dead On Trail (DOT) or simply put, lost, the Grand Master, one of the committee members or one of the hares will signal the beginning of the the Circle.

    There are only two basic things a hasher should know during the course of the Circle – the down-down and the Hash Song.

    A down-down is the chug-a-lugging of a twelve ounce beer from the Hash Mug. Once the Hash Song signals to begin chugging, the Hasher must drink until the mug leaves the lips or the beer depleted. Either way, the mug immediately goes over the hasher’s head. Non-drinkers get a free beer-shampoo.

    The Hash Song always start with an off-key "Aaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh".

    And it goes like this –

             “Ahhhh... (hold for about 10 seconds)
            Here's to (hash name or real name), he's true blue
            He's a Bastard through and through
            He's a Piss-pot so they say
            He tried to go to heaven,
            But he went the other way.

    Drink it down, down, down...” (this is the signal to START chugging the down-down)

    If the Hasher is taking too long to finish the drink, the following is sung:

             “Why are we waiting,
            Why are we waiting.”

    Until the offending hasher has cooperated (finished the beer) or has been dunked by other senior hashers.

    Conducting the Circle

    The Grand Mistress (GM) will first make sure the Circle is formed and that he has everybody’s attention. Hash Respect must always be given to whoever “owns” the Circle at any given point. “Owning” a Circle simply involves putting your glass on your head and seeking permission from the GM to go to the centre of the Circle, and having something to say – be it a charge or an announcement.

    The GM will ask for the Hares to step into the Circle and ask the Pack what they thought of the hash run. In any case, the Hares are always the first to be given an official down-down by the GM.

    After the down-down, the Hares will be asked by the GM to tell the Pack about the On-On. The On-On is where everybody adjourns for food and more beer. It is usually the Hares’ responsibility to arrange the On-On. The Hares will tell the Pack where the food is, how much per head and how much the beer costs.

    Next, the GM will make an announcement on where and when the next hash will be.

    The GM will then invite visiting Hashers into the Circle for a welcome down-down. Hash-names and original Hash Chapters must be announced with each visitor.

    Next, a series of charges are made by members of the circle. All “offenders” must enter the Circle and receive their down-down “punishment”. Hash Respect must always be maintained.

    The Circle ends when all the beer runs out.

    Then, everybody goes to the On-On – food and more beer. And more singing – Hash Songs.