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EPISKOPI HASH HOUSE HARRIERS CYPRUS

(One Of The Last Gentlemen Only Hashes in The World)

Tales From The Crit'

Tales From 2825

The Hares Today on Run 2825 were

Peter Hogg: Runs: 651   Hares:89     Av:7

Jim Burke Runs:1047     Hares: 157  Av: 7

Mike Jones Runs: 102   Hares 18   Av. 5

 

Number of runners: 26

Returning Hashers ; Stuart Law

Guest: Steve Harris and Geoff Davis

 

With our Second World War theme today I noticed this article the other day. The Royal Canadian Legion which is an off shot of our own British Legion were really happy with their radio commercial for it’s 2016 lottery . It was pulled from the airwaves on the first day of transmission, however, when it emerged that the background music they had selected was in fact the Nazi Party anthem. Said the then President of the Legion Harvey Shevalier “ It sounded really good when we heard it . A superb marching song but I guess extolling millions to look up and salute the swastika might not have been appropriate”

In times of war self sacrifice is a paramount virtue. New heights were achieved in 1941 by HMS Trinidad when she fired a torpedo at a German destroyer . The incident happened within the Arctic circle and the Trinidad’s crew completely overlooked the effect of the icy water on the oil in torpedo’s steering mechanism . On the Trinidad’s bridge the officers watched as it sped at 40 knots towards it’s target and then slowly became aware that the torpedo was starting to follow a curve path . In less than a minute it was pursuing a semi circular route straight into the Trinidad’s way.

Displaying the precision on which naval warfare depends the torpedo scored a direct hit on the ship’s engine room , leaving the bemused German destroyer to sail away.

Notices for the good of the Hash?

Yesterday was the closing date for replies to the questionnaire asking you to tell me what you and your better half if applicable will attend over the 50th Weekend. Most of you have replied so thank you. The Cyprus night on the Saturday is the only one where numbers are tight so if you do know of anyone intending to come that hasn’t replied to Barney tell them to get their skates on.

Mike Ball has reported in and is clearly in good spirits. After an in depth philosophical debate with himself about the merits or not of regular updates for the hash he has decided that unlike Royalty with their regular bulletins he reckons hashers have other things to worry about, like how many cans are left in the cool box, rather than a chap with a second new knee.

Suffice to say his recovery continues . His flight on Ryanair on Oct 27th is at present still  due to operate as scheduled though Michael O’Leary  has yet to get to that date in his cancelations.

Tony Flower asked what were the total costs for hashers attending all the events over the 50th Anniversary ( a total of €63  broken down €28 for Black Tie, €5 open run fee Saturday, €10 Cyprus Night , €5 run fee Monday Anniversary Run €15 chop )

He complained that his hash (Amathus) had done a similar weekend for €30 using hash funds as a subsidy. On Pres' explained that a decision had been made to use such monies on this hash to buy a commemorative mug and Jimmy Carroll advised him that this had been put to 36 members of the hash (from an Active Run List of 46 ) on August 29th and met with no objections, indeed it was fully supported. Tony said he didn’t want a mug and On Pres took the discussion away from the Crit and he and Tony shared honest opinions at a separate one on one.

 

Next Week’s Run :Sotira

Hares: Mike Hillyar, Mark Foley, Laurie Mitchell

Chop: Lenia’s

So to my true tale at the Crit:

From about the age of 7 as a treat in the summer I was often taken to The Hounslow Blue Lagoon Outdoor Lido to swim. In those far off says it billed itself as a tropical experience long before Hounslow became a suburb of Delhi. At the pool we always met a friend of my mother’s whose husband also flew for British European Airways. Most times she had her daughter Sandra with her who was some 4 years old than me but we became quite good friends she seemingly looking on me as a younger brother .

Because of our parents friendship our paths over the years crossed at various points  and we kept in touch.

In 1965 she went to work as a production assistant for her father’s brother who produced the Carry On films and on several occasions I got to take school friends and then more importantly highly impressed girl friends to Pinewood Studios to met Sid James, Hattie Jaques and the amazingly camp Kenneth Williams who reminded me of several of the housemasters at my boarding school.

 However in 1966 I went off to sea and it wasn’t until 1975 when walking down Beauchamp Place in Knightsbridge on my way to one of my watering holes The Grove Tavern, that I  saw Sandra  and an older man coming out of Verbanella’s restaurant on the other side of the street. Amazingly she remembered me and came over .

The man turned out to be her husband Terrence whose look, and in his corduroy jacket with elbow patches I took for an art teacher .

Did I have a girlfriend she asked and could I come for supper so we could catch up.

So it was that a few weeks later, with said girlfriend in tow, I found myself banging on the door of a very elegant Edwardian house overlooking the River Thames in Barnes.  This was no art teacher’s house I thought as Sandra open the door.

We were ushered in to the sitting room and Sandra went off to get the drinks and find Terrence. I looked around and there on the mantlepiece was a foot high gold stylised figure of a knight holding a crusader's sword standing on a reel of film with five spokes. Laughingly I said to the girlfriend it looks like an Oscar and read the engraving on the base. Oliver, Best Art direction, Terrance Marsh, 1968. At the other end of the mantlepiece was another one and that one had on the inscription Dr. Zhivago which happens to be my favourite film of all time.Again Best And Direction Terrence Marsh 1965. Clutching the surprisingly heavy statue aloft and still not believing they were real I was in the middle of a tearful Oscar acceptance speech to the girlfriend thanking the milkman ,my maiden aunt and uncle Tom Cobley when Sandra and Terrence walked in. I see you’ve found my Oscars he said.

Over supper he told me all about the making of Zhivago but seemed unable or more so unwilling to help me in my quest to obtain Julie Christie’s home phone number as I felt sure she’d like a date with a British Airways sales rep. He seems less convinced.  than I.

What are you working on now I asked and he said come up and see.

He had converted his attic into a studio where he design the sets in model form. Up we went and there on a huge table in the middle of the room was a town in intricate detail with a bridge in the middle spanning what was clearly a very large river.

 Luckily on holiday earlier in the year I had read Cornelius Ryan’s book A Bridge Too Far and was able to say knowledgeably ah Arnhem. Yes he said I’m working with Dickie Attenborough on making a film of the book.

On release the film , like so many of Richard Attenborough’s films caused some controversy .

Attenborough had given the part of General “Boy” Browning to his old friend Dirk Bogarde .

It was clear from the script that Attenborough intend the film to place the failure of Market Garden firmly at the feet of the deceased Browning and the also deceased Field Marshall Montgomery whilst presenting the other leading Generals all still alive in heroic roles.  However Attenborough had not reckoned on the venom of Browning’s wife the author Daphne Du Maurier . She mounted a determined campaign to defend her husband which she aimed mainly at Dirk Bogarde who she said was completely the wrong person to play her late husband  “ my husband was no homo” she so charmingly  said .

She appealed to Earl Louis Mountbatten to stop the Royal Premier and almost succeeded in doing so .

In fact Bogarde was also furious with the way he was directed to play Browning .

 A captain in Army Intelligence ( is that misnomer ? I’ll let the ex RAF and Naval lads answer that ) during the war he knew Browning well and worked on his staff in 1943. Indeed he, and eight other intelligence officers, were sent to Arnhem by General  Montgomery  and so he was with Browning throughout the battle.

Bogarde  always harboured grudges and he and Attenborough never talked again as Bogarde felt because of him  and the angst his direction had caused in Royal circles he had lost his chance of a knighthood.

The film was never a commercial success in the USA. The Americans saw Market Garden as a complete failure that probably lengthen the war  . Montgomery saw it as 90% successful . British audiences loved the film and flocked to see it, but then we have always loved heroic failure and do it rather well. Indeed the 1st Airborne at Arnhem who expected to be relieved in 2 days did hang on for 9.

The film killed off  Digby Tatham-Warter  the umbrella man though in real life he was captured and because of his wounds taken to a German hospital in Arnhem. The next day he shinned down a drainpipe and made contact with retreating British troops.

 He wasn’t however the only eccentric on the drop at Arnhem

A British paratrooper appears twice in the take off scenes from England, holding a chicken. This is a true portrayal of the Quartermaster of the 10th Sussex Para battalion Lieutenant Joseph ‘Pat’ Glover and his pet chicken Myrtle. Originally liberated from a farm in England by Glover as part of an officers mess  bet to establish whether chickens can fly . Glover decided to prove she could by taking her on a parachute jump . Glover secured Myrtle inside a zip-up canvas bag attached to his left shoulder, and after he had jumped and his parachute opened, he unfastened the bag to release the chicken. Myrtle put her head out, saw where she was, and immediately retreated back into the bag. When Glover was approximately 50 feet from the ground, he let Myrtle go and, despite much squawking and a graceless flapping of wings, the bird was most definitely flying and made a safe landing. Glover kept Myrtle on a perch in his office and when senior officers  enquired  he would explain her away as a living rations, reasoning that he would not be a very good quartermaster if he did not plan on food shortages.

 The pair completed more jumps over the summer, and once Myrtle had completed the regulation number of practice jumps, Glover awarded her with a set of parachute wings which he secured about her neck with an elastic band

Myrtle the Parachick became an accomplished flyer, and by the time of Arnhem she could safely be released from 300 feet and would wait patiently on the ground for her master to collect her.

 Glover and Myrtle dropped on Arnhem with the 4th Parachute Brigade in the second lift that occurred on September 18th. The next day they came under sustained German machine gun fire and Myrtle was riddled with bullets whist Glover returned fire. She was buried with her parachute wings and full military honours later that night.

 

On On The Hash

 


Tales From 2824

 

The Hares Today on Run 2824 were

Dave Norris: Runs:1103    Hares: 178    Av: 6

Mike Blocki Runs: 169    Hares:26         Av: 6

Doug Clarke Runs 232  Hares22   Av.10

Number of runners: 26

Returning Hashers ;Gary Montgomery

Run Crit: I don’t know how many rehearsals took place this week before we were treated to one of the longest jokes in Hash history  but to be fair it went well and set a new standard for the hash from now on. The Hare joke is now more important than the trail indeed on this run it certainly was. We went off and at first I thought we were at Hampton Court Maze as we wound our way back and forth between hedgerows and seemingly ever decreasing circles but eventually we hit the VP which turned out to be another view of the cliffs and sea just like er that one However we were about to discover that the spirit of Pat Chapman is alive and well on the hash as we crawled around a bowel loosening  cliff face before descending into a ravine and out the other side. I must have been suffering from altitude sickness by then as I forgot the old adage of never never look a gift horse in the mouth because instead of taking the offer of a short cut back to the RV. I foolishly stayed  on the trail. Off we crawled again along another cliff face and then a brown corduroy trouser climb to the top   and guess what it nearly was a  shite run.

Walk Crit: by Laurie. On. Pres. ‘ I cannot attempt to even paraphrase the long and rambling crit by Laurie. Suffice to say it seemed to centre on the fact that he and Marshall were left hareless in the middle of nowhere with carrion eating birds circling overhead though Marshall must have felt fairly sanguine at that time as the birds clearly must have been eying up Laurie. They stumbled around it seems until they heard the runners but arrived at the water check to find the runners gone, the water drunk and just official notices telling them they were in a danger area. By then the listeners at the Crit. had mainly gone to sleep. But I as On Pres have a new Exocet missile in my amour lest any walker refuses to do a Crit. I will unleash Laurie again.

Instead of Sport today I thought a quick canter through some amusing conversations between aircraft and Air traffic Control

An American Airlines had an exceedingly long roll out along the active runway after landing with his approach speed  just a little too high and missing the first exit taxiway.

San Jose Tower controller said: "American 751 heavy, turn right at the end on the active runway, if able. If not able, take the Guadeloupe exit off of Highway 101 and make a right turn at the light to return to the airport.”

O'Hare Approach Control:  "United 329 Heavy, your traffic ahead  is a Fokker F-27, one o'clock,3 miles, eastbound."

United Captain replied : "Approach, I've always wanted to say  this...  I've got that Fokker in my sight.”

Tower: “Speedbird  702, handing you over,  please contact  Departure Control on 124.7. "

Speedbird 702: "Tower, Speedbird 702 switching to Departure 124.7 ...  by the way, after we lifted off, we saw some kind of  dead animal on the far end of the runway."

Tower: "  Easyjet 635, cleared for take-off; did you copy the report from Speedbird?" 635: "Easyjet 635, cleared for takeoff roger; and roger, we copied Speedbird and we've already notified our caterers.

Notices for the good of the Hash?

Today is the anniversary of the death of Jack Blocki and Mike would like to say just a few words followed by Dave Norris who no doubt will say even fewer words interspersed with thousands of expletives. On Pres ‘ There followed a tribute to Jack. Mike Blocki talked of the beer and port Jack must have consumed on his epic career with the hash and that didn’t include the two or three bottles he “ borrowed” from the Hash each week and returned empty the following week. Nogsie dwelt more on his RAF war record fighting to win Poland back it’s independence’

You will have seen your questionnaire about the 50th weekend. Please return it as soon as possible so we can get an idea of numbers. However and to quote Paul McCartney “ if this ever-changing world in which we’re livin’

Makes you give in and cry “ here is another change. The Monday run ,due to stunning demand from the exiled better halves, will be Open so the girls can stretch their legs and show their worth as David Coleman used to say and amazingly  the good news keeps on a coming too as yours truly has beaten down Martin at The Platea  for the Saturday November 11th all you can eat buffet plus all the excitement of the normal summer Pissouri Cyprus Night to just €10 a head. however numbers are restricted so get your questionnaires back soonest to avoid disappointment .

Finally I have an award for Giles Day who has, as he used to once on the rugby pitch, danced, shimmied , swerved, side stepped and short cutted his way since June 2004  to 500 runs at an impressive average of 38 runs a year. Val phoned today to thank the Epi Hash for all that time Giles has spent out of the house .

For this milestone the coffers of the Hash have been emptied and this magnificent piece of paper produced. Framing is of course at the expense of the hasher but Barney Bruce Enterprises are happy to quote a special price.

Next Week’s Run :Avdimou

Market Garden Run please remember to  bring your rolled umbrellas to honour Digby Tatham Warter who carried his into battle because he said he could never remember passwords but that no self respecting tommy sentry would shoot a man with an umbrella as he must be British . Each check will be named after one of the bridges and the hash pack  will imitate 30th corps heading up Hells Highway a quite fitting name for one of Peter and Jim’s runs.

Hares:Peter Hogg, Jim Burke , Me

Chop: Fama G with the final ever presentation to George and by the way it is my 100th run so the brandy is on me!

So to my true tale at the Crit:

A few weeks ago the Oval Cricket ground hosted it’s 100th Test match.

It brought back memories for me as The Oval was the ground where I watched my first Test Match .

It was in the summer of 1956, and I went on the first day to see England play the Australians .

People dressed up in those days to go to cricket games and I remember being in my new Prep School uniform resplendent with a colourful cap and armed with scorecard I had been bought outside the ground.

England won the toss and batted. Cowdrey went first ball caught behind  and Keith Miller probably the greatest all rounder the game has ever seen( more of him later) bowled  The Reverend David Shepherd and then Peter Richardson  .

 England were 66/3 when Denis Compton came out to join Peter May.

Compton, very much in the twilight of his career and like Bollo boasting a new plastic knee , scored a glorious 94 runs before being bowled by Archer. I diligently recorded every one of them on my scorecard while my father and two other BEA Captain mates fretted at the stand of 156 as they were playing their usual Test match game of only having a pint of bitter when  a wicket fell. Their humour was much restored when, after Compton was dismissed, England lost another 3 wickets in 4 overs . I went home happy having seen my boyhood heroes and in the company of 3 very jovial if slightly inebriated  BEA captains.

Denis Compton was the first real sporting superstar playing as he did cricket for Middlesex and England and soccer for Arsenal . He was the first British sportsman to make a substantial living by exploiting his sporting reputation to provide advertisements and endorsements. For many years he was the public face of the Brylcreem range as well as host of other products eager to sponsor him. He won the First Division title with Arsenal in 1937-8 and in that summer  played his first Test match for England at the age of 19 . In 1939 he scored his first century while   playing against the West Indies. But as with many other sportsmen of his generation he lost some of his best years to the Second World War. 

He served in the army in the war and in 1945 he found himself in India and was selected to play in a services game against an Australian team in Calcutta. There he met the Aussie Keith Miller and the two became lifelong friends . On the second day of the match the crowd rioted and one of the rioters who had invaded the pitch ran up to Compton and said "Mr Compton, you very good player, but  match must stop now you understand". This was a phrase which Miller gleefully would run up and say to Compton whenever he came into bat against the Aussies.

Their friendship and drinking was legendary with both during many Test matches turning up,  still in evening dress, at the ground the next day having not been to bed. Indeed when Compton won the F.A. cup with Arsenal  in 1950 his first half performance was less than inspiring and the trainer poured him a very large glass of whiskey at half time which he credits for his sparkling second half.

Compton's absent-mindedness was legendary. He turned up for the Old Trafford Test of 1955 against South Africa without his kitbag. Undaunted, he found some non matching gloves and pads lying about in the changing room and then  he sauntered into the museum at the ground , borrowed an antique bat off the display and went on to score 158 and 71.  This absent-mindedness was particularly obvious in his tendency to run out his partners at the crease: Trevor Bailey declared that 'a call for a run from Compton should be treated as no more than a basis for negotiation.'

At the end of his sporting career he got a job as cricket correspondent with The Sunday Express but was far more interest in horse racing . He sent a friend to watch the Test match at Old Trafford whilst he went to Ascot . It rained all day at Old Trafford but for a laugh his friend sent him a full report of  an imaginary day’s play which Compton happily , sent on to the sports editor and the Express published it in it’s early editions .On the Monday he was fired.

 A few years later he confided to a few Middlesex players that  his 70th birthday was coming up and they organised a birthday party jointly with the MCC . At the dinner the chief guest was called to the telephone as, said the waiter, the lady said it was very urgent . When he picked up the phone the lady said "Denis," she said, "it's me, your wife. You're not 70, you're only 69 next week.” A slightly embarrassed Compton had to go back and ask everyone to turn up again the following year.

Unfortunately I never met Denis Compton but in 1983 when I  was posted by British Airways to Sydney as Manager New South Wales I met Keith Miller or Nugget as he was known . 

As you know the Aussies are mad keen on sport and so it made sense for an airline to have a small stable of sports stars on call to attend functions in return for free tickets . BA had Bob Simpson and The Nugget from the  cricket world and a few weeks after my arrival Nugget phoned to introduce himself and offer to buy me a beer or two and a bite to eat.

We met for lunch a few days later at one of his clubs the beautiful RAC Club on Macquarie Street in Sydney. He was a super bloke, very easy going and delightful to chat to . Born in 1919 he was 64 when we met. He, like Compton, missed his best playing years during the war when he flew Mosquitos from England to bomb Germany. He was also like Compton not a great respecter of authority and nor did he think, unlike his Australian captain Donald Bradman, that winning was all.

In the 1947 Test against England at Adelaide Nugget told me “England were caught on a very sticky wicket taking lots of bounce and Bill Edrich came in. He'd had a very serious war and he’d survived and I reckoned the last thing he wanted after five years of fighting was to be flattened by a cricket ball, so I eased up. Bradman came up to me and said, 'Don't slow down, Keith. Bowl quicker.' That remark put me off Test cricket.” he said “I never felt the same way about it after that.’

Over lunch he told me about  the 1948 Ashes tour in England. Bradman  on the ship sailing over, Nugget said, told him that he was to be in bed by the 10 pm curfew during Test matches and there was to be no drinking and fraternising with Denis Compton on the tour. He reiterated it on the night before the First Test. He didn’t bowl or field at all well  that first day and England put on a decent score. That night Bradman had him in again and said. For Christ sake Miller go out and do what you would normally do tonight . So Compton and I hit the pubs and clubs  and had a great night .  The next day I took four wickets and scored 76 runs.

Miller never Captained  Australia but he did captain New South Wales and despite his first ever instruction to his fielders to “ just Scatter” he was a fine Captain .

We chatted and drank till 7 p.m. when he invited me to come and meet Bob. Sure I said thinking he meant Bob Simpson. Off we went in a taxi and the next thing I realised  we were being cleared through security at Kirribilli House on the harbourside in Sydney . Bob it turned out was the Prime Minister of Australia Bob Hawke and Kirribilli House his official mansion . A reformed alcoholic he sat drinking water while we drank beer though what the hell he thought of the drunken Pommie bastard I have no idea. I was certainly never invited there again .

My favourite quote of  Nugget’s  is the one he gave Michael Parkinson when he asked him about the way this generation of players talk about the pressure of playing Test cricket. “ Pressure” replied Keith Miller “is when you have a Messerschmitt 109 up your arse, playing cricket isn’t ”     

On On The Hash

 

Tales From 2823

 

The Crit :

The normal role of this crit on this hash is to fill in the gap between the beer almost running out in the cool boxes and a sensible time to leave to get to the chop and so to more beer.

However on these S

undowner runs I am very conscious that each of you will have carted to the beach enough alcohol to keep a busy pub in business for at least a week, as well as  warm the cockles of the hearts of  all the inmates of The Priory and The Betty Ford clinics, and, understandably, you are keen to return to sup some more as indeed I am. So a fairly short crit.

 

 

 

Hares on Run 2823

Peter Hogg: Runs:648  Hares:87  Av:7

Mike Jones: Runs:99  Hares:17  Av: 6

The Run Crit: Mike Woods “ There was no joke before the run so here goes the On Pres is sitting at an airport bar when he noticed a beautiful woman sitting next to him. He thought to himself, "Wow, she's so gorgeous she must be a flight attendant. But which airline does she work for?" Hoping to pick her up, he leaned towards her and uttered the BA slogan: "To Fly. To Serve?" She gave him a blank, confused stare and he immediately thought to himself, " ooh shit, she doesn't work for BA". A moment later, another slogan popped into his head. He leaned towards her again, "Something special in the air?" She gave him the same confused look. He mentally kicked himself, and scratched American Airlines off the list. Next he tried the United slogan: "I would really love to fly your friendly skies?" This time the woman turned on him "What the f**k do you want?" The man smiled, then slumped back in his chair, and said... "ahhh, Ryanair”.

I think Peter you managed to beat my record when I played my first trail as a virgin hare. Instead of 45 mins my run turned out to be just 17 minutes. This one was less than 15 minutes !

The Walk Crit: Drew Muir “ I feel I probably shouldn’t be doing this as when I arrived I was not going to walk but instead enjoy a few drinks. However the On Pres described the walk as something  like teenage sex and off I went. We scaled a hill enjoyed some views met the runners on their short course. Walked on through the vines and then met some of the runners going around twice before a stroll down the beach . Off the beach we came up past the old mosque and then back onto the rocks to find the hares had in Canute fashion held back the sea .All in all a shite walk.”

On the drive down here today after having been cut up by a local driver I raged don’t they take driving tests here but who I wondered  is the person who  actually took and  failed their  test in the fastest time ? Well until recently it was Helen Ireland of Auburn California who failed her test after 8 seconds. That was the time it took her to mistake the accelerator for the clutch and drive through the wall of the testing school. It seemed unbeatable until Peter Thompson a Lanarkshire motor mechanic failed his test before the examiner had even got into the car. . Arriving at the test centre he saw the examiner in his office and tooted and gestured for  him to come out rather than him having to go in.  Annoyed at this summons the examiner came out and said it was illegal to sound a horn whilst stationary and failed him.

For the good of The Hash

You will have seen from the Run List that run 2825 on September 19th is The Market Garden Run. This does not mean, as our esteemed Run Meister thought, that hashers should bring their prize marrows or leeks to the RV but in fact is to commemorate the Allied operation to try to finish the Second World War before Christmas 1944 by seizing a series of bridges  up to and including the one over The Rhine at Arnheim in September 1944 . The Operation was Market – the airborne forces, who would seize and hold  the bridges and    Garden  the heavy ground forces that would relieve them and motor on into Germany itself.

So instead of marrows would hashers please bring umbrellas on that day to pay tribute to Major Digby Tatham-Warter DSO who went into battle at Arnheim with his umbrella neatly rolled up as his weapon of choice and indeed using it  captured a german light tank  single handedly .

And So To My True Tale on The Crit :

As we are on a beach let me pose you a question who is the best paid solo singer in the world ?  The answer is Jimmy Buffet he of the song Margaritaville fame . In 2016 it was estimated that Jimmy Buffet earned about $250 million.

If you had asked that question some 200 years ago the answer would have been Elizabeth Bullington a soprano opera singer billed as the best ever.

The painter Sir Joshua Reynolds painted her standing holding a music book with her flowing curls partly pinned up and partly hanging loose. She was listening to a choir of angles singing just above her.

 The composer Hayden said the portrait was an injustice as the heavenly angels would have been listening to her not the other way around, such was the beauty of her voice.

She was quite a sensation off the stage as well . A scurrilous biography of her sold out in less than a day. It contained exceedingly amorous and sexually explicit  letters written to her by her numerous lovers  including The Prince of Wales so things haven’t changed too much have they.

In a more dignified expression of her fame when on her Italian opera tour she recovered from an illness all the Church bells in Venice were rung and it seemed only fitting that as she completed  her aria at the Naples Opera House, Mount Vesuvius should erupt and shoot forth flames and lava hundreds of feet into the air.

On her triumphant return to London in 1801 both Drury Lane and Covent Garden opera houses bid for her services and then had to agree to share her one night at each for two months. She was paid a staggering £10,000 for this or £687,000 in todays money. But that is less than half a percent of what Jimmy Buffet earned. Is he really worth 200 Elizabeth Bullingtons ? and what has changed to allow singers to earn such huge amounts.

Well in 1874 Thomas Edison filed his patent for the phonograph an invention that could record a human voice and play it back on a cylinder . Now you didn’t need to go to a theatre to hear a singer. They came into your house instead.The draw back of the cylinder was that a singer had to record the song each time.  So 500 copies meant he had to  sing the song 500 times.  The big turning point came in 1894 when Emile Berliner invented the hard phonograph disc that could be mass produced .

Singers could now sing a song in a studio and the next day thousands of people could buy the record the world over.

Fast forward to 1977 and the release of Margaritaville Jimmy Buffet’s song about getting hammered whilst sitting on a beach somewhere in paradise . It struck a cord with the baby boomers , and why not ? It’s title includes a great drink, and the song, with the popular refrain 'Wastin' away again in Margaritaville,' has become an ode to the easy-living beach life,  just like us on this beach today.

The song only has 208 words and lasts less than 4 minutes and had Jimmy Buffet sung it in  Elizabeth Bullington’s time  it would have pleased a few people and then sunk without a trace.  But in 1977 with every radio station playing it worldwide  it sold millions of copies. Not on a par with the greatest selling singles like White Christmas or Yesterday but it didn’t need to, because Jimmy Buffet quickly realised the song was selling a lifestyle people hankered for in their dreams.

So he opened a bar and restaurant called Magaritaville in Key West Florida and people flocked to it.  Today there are 22 of them around the USA as well as casinos in Las Vegas, Atlantic City and Tulsa,  Margaritaville  bars on all Norwegian Caribbean cruise ships, there are restaurants at most large U.S airports as well as  huge hotels  in top Florida, the Caribbean and Mexican resorts and as I typed the Crit this morning I was listening to Margaritaville radio being streamed on to my laptop.

 His super little song about looking for a lost jigger of salt  now earns him, from this empire, over $250 million a year. Not bad for a beach bum who also wrote the classic Why Don't We Just Get Drunk and Screw

And talking of drinking. Lets go back to it.

 

On On The Hash

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tales From 2822

The Hares Today on Run 2822 were

 

Tony Flower: Runs: 583       Hares: 72    Av:8 

Pete Moore Runs:522     Hares: 64        Av:8

Keith Johnson Runs13 Hares 1  Av.13

 

Number of runners: 30

Returning Hashers ;Barney Bruce, Colin Garland, Trevor Kemp, Dan Archer

Guest: none

 

 

Today’s Run

Web Site Info : My God a motorway exit number. Laurie will be delighted.

The R.V. :  Me thinks we have been this way before.

Run Crit: Me thinks we have been this way before and not so long ago  ?  Still we set off and were quickly through check one and onto check two with some pleasant running interrupted only by Trevor who kept asking me what this blue flour was all about and did I know what had happened to his trash machine. Clearly weeks and weeks under the burning sun in County Durham had fried his brain. I told him the machine had had a viking funeral one evening and that we had bought two bottles of brandy on his tab with Hash Cash. That bought him quickly back to his senses   !  From then on the run was more like a huge rollercoaster ride   as we staggered up and then almost immediately trotted down one hill after another until check 7 and the water. There  I asked Trevor, who was still worried that maybe I wasn’t joking about the brandy, how his holiday had been. Well we started with the boiler blowing up on the first night then the telly on the blink on the second night and had only got to the second week by the time we trotted into the R.V. two checks later all in all a shite run

Walk Crit: Six intrepid walkers set out following Pete. It turned out to be a short walk so this is a short crit. To be fair halfway through the walk the going got quite tough and there were cries in the ranks that this might not be one of the best ways to spend an afternoon with the mercury hovering near 40C and the beer chilling nicely back at the R.V. so numbers depleted and the walkers returned. A few of us decided to go around again but i won’t bore you with a repeat of the above.

Sport:  The England soccer team eased their way past the fearsome might of Malta and Slovakia  without it must be added the help of Geoffrey  Boycott’s gran who would, he says,  have won both games by herself playing in her pinny , and Wayne Rooney who the same Geoffrey Boycott once described as having  no more brains than a pork pie, has since early Friday morning,  now got more points than Arsenal .

 Anyway on to happier things.  Since  the hype over the Mayweather McGregor fight has now died down please  spare a thought for Harvey Gartley who holds the record as the first and only professional boxer to knock himself out. It happened in the regional heats of The Golden Gloves competition in Michigan when he was matched against Dennis Outlette. Neither had boxed in public before and were understandably nervous. Harvey started promisingly . He came out of his corner bobbing, weaving and even doing a bit of the Ali shuffle . The crowd roared him on as he closed on his opponent threw a right hook, missed him completely,  whacked himself on the chin and saw stars. The referee counted him out as he lay stunned on the canvas.

In a complete  contrast of sport ,and for the northerners amongst you, what about the least successful pigeon race ? Nothing brings more excitement to a pigeon race does it than the disappearance of all or most of the competitors. In 1978  6,745 birds were released at Preston in Lancashire . 5,545 were never seen again amid rumours that they had retired to South Devon and Cyprus and were living on the roofs of bungalows there.

things for the good of the Hash?

Dave Ward the owner of The Grape and Grain in Pissouri, whose father Joe as you all know is a member of the Hash, has 5 places left on a male only  trip to The Aphrodite Brewing Company on Thursday September 28th. He would like to open these places up to any hasher interested.

 A mini bus will leave The Grape and Grain at 11.45. returning back to the pub at about 5 p.m. .

The cost including lunch and the mini bus is €32 and the opportunity exists on arrival for guests to upgrade their ticket to drink for free all afternoon . Dave is going to let me know how much that will be .

Anyone interested in a great afternoon out sampling the various beers on offer let me know please.

The sundowners run this Friday we are at present 34 in number . If there are any of you that haven't given your food order to Peter Hogg please do . The hares are Peter and yours truly and the signs will be very minimal indeed non existent . It is the same RV as last week . Directions will be clear on the website from tomorrow they will also say no signs.

Next Week’s Run : Curium

Hares:Dave Norris

Michael Blocki

Doug Clarke

Chop: Stables

So to my true tale at the Crit:

Today we celebrate the anniversary of the tragic death of Percy Pilcher in 1899.

 Who  was he you may well  ask ?

Well Percy even though his name sounds like a Music Hall commedian was, what today, would be called an Aeronautical Engineer though in those days of course nobody had yet built and flown a powered aircraft. Percy started his career in the Royal Navy but left the sea  to become a lecturer at Glasgow University where he developed an interest in flight . In 1896 with his third  glider  called the Hawk, Percy Pilcher  broke the world distance record when he flew his glider 250 m (820 ft)  near Lutterworth in Leicestershire.

He then set his sight on powered flight and went into partnership with Walter Wilson, who incidentally was later  to be credited as the inventor of the tank . While Wilson worked on the newly invented internal combustion  engine  Percy  Pilcher attempted to master the four concepts of flight, lift ,the way that the flow of air around wing-shaped structures keeps aeroplanes aloft. Drag, the friction  that comes from the airframe passing through air, thrust, the force that drives the airframe forward and  weight  the mass of the airframe that tries to keep the plane on the ground.  A powered plane would need more lift as it had to fly with the engine as well as the weight of a man and the aircraft itself. More lift , obviously required more wingspan. But more wingspan would require wings so long that they couldn't be supported by the plane's fuselage in the first place - a vicious circle. But Percy solved this problem with the help of an American Octave Chanute by brilliantly  stacking the wings one above the other giving far more lift without putting too much stress on the fuselage . His triplane with it’s 4 hp engine was ready for flight on September 30th 1899 .The great and the good gathered again in Leicestershire but there was a problem with the crankshaft so no powered flight that day. Pilcher, ever the showman, instead gave them a flying exhibition with his  glider, but attempting a steep turn he crashed and, later that day, died from his injuries .

Would his heavier than air plane have flown ? Well when Pilcher’s plans were re-discovered in 1998  a team of aeronautical engineering undergrads built an exact copy of it and the pilot  flew it for 1 minute 24 seconds on an almost windless day .

The Wright brothers using Percy Pilchers wing design 4 years after him in 1903 flew for just 59 seconds  using a 25 mph headwind to get better lift .

So had he lived Percy Pitcher not Wilbur Wright would now be feted as the first man to fly a powered machine

In 1979 as a young debonaire handsome young fellow  I began  my first  British Airways management job as Manager Northern Portugal and as part of the job I got my very own daily BA flight into Porto . So BA packed me off on a four month intensive course called Operations Management and Flight Planning. Basically I leant amongst other things all that Percy Pilcher had had to discover about flying all those years ago plus   jet engine performance, and by the end of the course I had to be able to give a pilot  a flight plan for his aircraft, from say Boston to London that he could put into the cockpit computer  and fly safely.

 Prior to the course I was sent  to Nairobi to work alongside a Flight Planner. Why there ? Well Nairobi airport is 5,324 feet above sea level and is hot. Aircraft jet engines hate thin hot air. They suck it in like a Hasher on a steep climb. So it is a great training airport.

Unbeknown to me till I arrived , BA was having trouble with it’s 747s out of there. Planes were arriving at Heathrow with the tops of trees in their undercarriage which they were collecting on take off from Nairobi . Clearly something was wrong maybe with Percy’s famous  lift , engine thrust or aircraft weight and so  an engineer and a top Flight Planner were on my flight down. The Flight Planner worked with the Ops team to check if there had been  mistakes  made on the calculation of engine performance or the weight and balance of those aircraft and therefore wrong  takeoff and climb speeds had been given to the pilots.

 The engineer  meanwhile first checked the water content of the aviation fuel in the silos. These were well within safety limits so that evening he stood in the shadows near the turnaround aircraft and watched the regular check being made on the fuel being pumped from the tanker onto the aircraft . The young African in  British Airways overalls took a fuel sample  and then carefully allowed some of the water at the bottom  to drop out of the pipette before adding some more fuel and doing the same until the reading was within the limits shown on the marking on the pipette. The Engineer stepped out of the shadows and asked him what the hell he was doing. Oh said the lad  the  Bwana Engineer he get very upset if too much water in the fuel. He shouts loud and calls everyone Black bastards so I tip a little water out and then show him and he very happy man and pat me on the back . What shenanigans were being done by the fuel supplier between the fuel silo and the aircraft I never found out but the problem was solved  and after a further month in Dubai sitting with more flight planners I went to London and managed 4 months later to pass my course  and returned to Porto.

There I continued my fun wheeze of upgrading Port wine growers into Club class and in grateful thanks they  in return sent me glorious cases of vintage port.

 I particularly enjoyed helping the head of my favourite port house Fonseca which at the time was run by the larger than life figure of Bruce Guimaraens. His company Fonseca still produce the superb non vintage Fonseca Bin 27 , drink it chilled on a summer’s day and it is positively moorish.

Bruce’s first floor office was literally suspended right over the River Douro and whenever I walked in to say hello he would reach into his small fridge extract 2 bottles of Bin 27 and uncorking them walk to the window and throw the corks into the river. “Won’t be needing those again” he would say and I would settle in for an amusing hour or so in his company .

 One of the stories he told me was of him   joining his first regiment after leaving Sandhurst . I believe it was the Kings African Rifles or a similar colonial regiment.

On his first dining in night he became somewhat  socially confused on a surfeit of cocktails before dinner . At dinner he drank plenty of wine as well and by the time the port arrived he was decidedly  tipsy but not, he felt, too drunk to believe in his befuddled mind that the port was definitely  going the wrong way around the table. Up he got and slurring and swaying  declared to his commanding officer at the top of the table that  his family had been in the Port business for over 200 years and  that the regiment was un doubtably passing the port the wrong way. From that night  until 1960 when  it was disbanded his was the only regiment in The British Army to pass the port anticlockwise. 

     On On The Hash

 

 

 Tales From 2821

 

The Hares Today on Run 2821 were

Jim Burke: Runs:1044        Hares:156      Av: 7

Mike Jones: Runs:98     Hares: 16        Av:6

Number of runners:36

Returning Hashers ;Pete Moore, Brian Liddell, George Trotter, Laurie Mitchell, Aubrey O’Callaghan ,Keith Johnson, Ray Jobson and Mike Hillyar

Guest: Keith Green guest of Mike Ball, Stokie guest of Aubrey O’ Callaghan , Alan Clarson Richard Clarson, Chris Little guests of Jimmy Carrol

Today’s Run

Web Site Info :As one of the hares I can only glory in its clarity

The R.V. : Can’t Beat it

Run Crit: by Mark Foley “ I don’t like doing crits indeed I loath it because I don’t enjoy public speaking and to be brutally honest I don’t think I’m much good at it and others that are far better and enjoy doing them should do it for the enjoyment of the hash. However for reasons some of you will know I’m doing it today. We ran out over there ( howls from the hash no over there ) ah yes and then we ran around there ( again howls of no the other way ) anyway the first bit was fields and hills and then I really enjoyed the second bit along the cliffs. Good open running . thank you “

Walk Crit: by Marshall Hughes Mike Jones as is his prerogative I guess asked me as we finished his walk to do the crit so here we go . We walked out along the cliffs with great views and after about 5 mins came to the stone piles and the maze . Attrition set in and three of the walkers deciding that, with so many unexpected hashers turning up for the run and walk, beer might be in short supply  headed back to the R.V.

On we walked and two more disappeared though they clearly got lost as they turned up after us at the RV. There was no mention of a hill at the briefing but there was a hill quite a big one. Up we went along the top and past a house flying the biggest Greek flag is there any other country in the world that rarely flies there own flag but always that of another ? ( Bollo from the ranks “Wales “) 50 minute walk all in all shite.

Last Tuesday at the Chop Nogsie was telling me that when other golf  players ask him what Jim Burke used to do for a living he tells them that he was a famous  human cannonball as he was the just  right size to go into the cannon. But if Jim was the best who I wondered  were the least successful human cannonballs. Well in 1972 when Jim Burke was just starting out on his career inside a cannon, Mary Connor made three fearless attempts to become the first woman to be blasted across the River Avon. On the first the cannon fired but she never reached the end of the barrel, on the second she swept gracefully halfway across the river before splashing down . For the third attempt she appeared covered in bandages having been  scrapped coming out of the barrel and this time out she  flew halfway across before landing on the inflatable rescue dingy and capsizing it ,a spectator boat had to rescue them all.

This surpasses the the previous record held by one Rita Thunderbird who remained in the cannon after the firing while her costume  floated across the River Thames. A blanket had to found before she would come out. By the way when Jim Burke retired from the business a spokesman said "We'll struggle to get another man of the same calibre.”

N.B. better quip from Drew “ actually Mike he was fired !!”

Things for the good of the Hash?

During the week of September 10th you will receive an E mail from me referring you to the website. There you will see the entire programme of the 50th laid out with, where relevant, the cost. You, along with all the exiles that have expressed an interest in coming, will be asked to let either me by e mail or  Hash Cash know in person which events and runs you intend to attend and whether you will be bringing your better half, girlfriend, boy friend or aged aunt and which events they will attend.You can do this either in person at the  run on Sept 12th or by email by Sept 16th.

There will be no deposit requirement from members but if you indicate you are attending one or both of the two main dinners on the Friday and Saturday then please understand that if you have to cancel  for any reason within 14 days of the event you,  gentlemen, will be expected to cover the cost of the meals you miss as the Hash will have paid for them .

The Minister for Transport The Right Honourable Jimmy Carroll sitting member for Pissouri advises the laying on of transport for so large a number from so many different areas would be a labour equivalent to that of  ( sisefus) Sisyphus and his rock and the cost would be  prohibitive. However should members or exiles wish to avail themselves of Jimmy’s services for private coach or mini bus hire at their own expense he has his contacts ready to provide the same .

The Hash has put aside some €1,800 euros for the event by putting aside a euro from each member that has paid for a run and some of those monies will have to be put aside for sundry expenses that occur during the course of the weekend. There was an idea that the rest of the monies might be used to encourage early bookers in the form of a subsidy of some sort but early indications are that we should be about 100 Plus  strong in numbers  which certainly for the Cyprus Night on the Saturday is right on the button.

Instead the monies will be used to provide each member of the Epi Hash on the active run list, who has run 10 times or more in the year November 13 2016 to November 13th 2017, with a 50th anniversary commemoration  china mug of a size sufficient to hold the requisite large can of KEO  and small 7 Up . The front of the blue chine mug will have the Episkopi Hash House Harriers 50th Anniversary Run, Curium   and on  the back will be your  name .  Exiles will be invited to pay the €30+ euros if they want one as they have not contributed to the fund.   Your excess monies after the cost of the Anniversary mugs and sundry expenses will go to the Hash charity  Prostate Cancer Research.

Next Week’s Run : Erimi

Hares: Pete Moore , Tony Flower, Keith Johnson

Chop: Michelle’s

So to my true tale at the Crit:

About this time in 1974 I started dating a white Kenyan girl I had met at a friend’s wedding. Her father owned large estates in those days in Kenya, Rhodesia and South Africa and was, as we say in the vernacular,   absolutely bloody loaded.

 One of the many houses the family owned around the world was a delightful  town  house in Chester Row, Belgravia the poshest part of London which she had sole use while she attended  Mrs. Hoster’s Finishing School nearby .

 My own flat in South Ken which my mother described on her one and only visit  as worse than the Black Hole of Calcutta was quickly abandoned and I moved into Chester Row .

It had the added advantage of being but 5 mins from my sales desk at the British Airways Head Office then in Victoria.

The nearest pub to the house was The Plumbers Arms a lovely small Victorian pub with a good selection of bitter and this became our local.

Unfortunately neither of us were there on that now famous Thursday night in 1974 when Veronica Duncan better known as Lady Lucan burst in to say that her husband had tried to kill her  but  had instead killed the nanny Sandra Rivers.

Lord “Lucky” Lucan as he was known had, having lost a lengthy custody battle to get his children back , decided to murder his wife . On that Thursday evening he hid in the basement kitchen expecting his wife to come down to make her usual 9 pm cup of tea but the nanny, who had cancelled her normal Thursday night off, had offered to make it instead and for her troubles was beaten to death with a lead pipe. Toffs clearly spend too much time playing Cluedo .

Lucan then tried to strangle his wife who had come down to find out why the tea was taking so long. But Veronica, was not the daughter of an Army Major for nothing and clearly knew a thing or two about street fighting. She managed to  get her right hand onto his Lordships balls and squeezed for all she was worth. He quickly decided that the better part of valour was to release his stranglehold on her and  leg it to Newhaven on the South Coast  where he disappeared . Lady Lucan, as I said, legged it to my local pub.

However, as so often in life , Lucan’s disappearance had unintended consequences  for someone else, as, at the time Lord Lucan’s tackle was in his wife’s vice like grip, Sheila Buckely had M.P. John Stonehouse's in a far more amorous hold. They were in bed planning how they could be together without him resorting to Lucky Lucan’s more drastic solution.

John Stonehouse a Labour M.P. and recently Post Master General in Harold Wilson’s cabinet was a married man but having an affair with his secretary . His debts were mounting and he was cooking the books at his business to cover them. To cap it all he was and had been , since 1960, spying for the Czech government and passing British  secrets to them in return for cash.

The plan they hatched in bed was that Stonehouse would fake his own death and disappear to Australia  and after a period of time Sheila would also slip away and join him.

On November 20th 1974 whilst in Florida he left a pile of clothes on Miami Beach and using a passport he had obtained by stealing the identity of one of his dead constituents  he flew via the West Coast to Australia.

On arrival in Melbourne he set about accessing the 36 different bank accounts he had secretly opened in different names. As Clive Mindon he deposited money at The Bank of New Zealand . It was unfortunate for him that the male cashier he used was dating a girl from the Bank of New South Wales  up the road and when he went to take her for lunch he saw the same guy now calling himself John Markham drawing out money there.

Over lunch they decided to tell the police and popped into the nearest station and here was where John Stonehouse’s luck really ran out .

Lord Lucan had recently  been supposedly sighted on Bondi Beach  in Sydney and the Australian police forces were on high alert. When the cashiers told the police officer the mysterious guy spoke with a Pommie accent every policeman in the Station could see himself soon to be on every TV news programme and selling his life story for millions as The Man that Caught Lord Lucan.

They quickly traced Stonehouse through the two Banks to a block of flats and after following him for a few days arrested him on Christmas Eve . In the cell they asked him to pull down his trousers to look for the scar Lord Lucan was known to have on his leg but oh so disappointingly for the guys there wasn’t one.

 However Stonehouse did have a book of matches from a hotel on Miami Beach and quite quickly they put two and two together and realised they had a man who wasn’t even supposed to be missing the drowned Member of Parliament John Stonehouse .

He was extradited to the U.K. to face 21 counts of deception and fraud . Stonehouse elected to  conducted his own defence which  must have gone swimmingly well as he received the maximum sentence allowable of 7 years in The Scrubs.

However his luck did change  in 1980 when  Margaret Thatcher  on the advice of MI6 decided not to prosecute him for spying after a Czech defector named him as their  top spy.

 MI6 who had finally outed Anthony Blunt earlier that year as a member of the Cambridge spy ring, thought prosecuting Stonehouse  would make the Americans yet again think London was little more than the Kremlin’s best Branch Office .

And what of  my lovely, rich, girl friend? Well her father and I finally met over a very pleasant dinner when I was politely told that I had had a good innings but it was now time to draw  stumps and retire from the game. She went off to  to work in one of his companies and I went back to the Black Hole of Calcutta in South Kensington and left the delights of Belgravia.

As an aside, several years ago married friends of mine John and Adrienne Corbishley came into an inheritance and bought a flat on Eaton Square in Belgravia . She proudly wrote to her sister giving their new, very posh, address and saying how she had fulfilled a lifetime ambition. A few days later the newspapers announced that  the Aga Khan had bought in Eaton Square and her sister then wrote back to her  saying “ you poor dears I see the Pakis are already moving in  “

On On The Hash

At the Chop

When I phoned George at FamaG and told him we were 34 for the chop there was a long pause and then he said how many ? 34 I replied and I think he dropped the phone. What a turn out for the last hash chop there.

He clearly phoned all his family to then turn to and lend a hand and he hot footed it to the local butcher to get in more chops rapido

Even so 4 at a time on his single grill the meal took at long time to serve. Almost an hour for the last person to be served and it had to be Drew ! He stood when his arrived and suggested the hash stood for grace before exclaiming ah but you have all finished.

A presentation was made to George and in return his family thanked the Hash for years of memories they will never forget. George then gave the Hash 2 bottles of brandy to consume ensuring that that last night probably has been forgotten this morning. Finally, after many tearful speeches coupled with lustful gloating by a number senior hashers towards George's youngest daughter. "Raymondo" auctioned  his collection of Hash silver....namely the awful tin mugs which have resided in the FamaG since Ray was On Pres', raising 70 Euros for this years Hash Charity.  

 

 

 

 

Tales From 2820

The Pre Run Briefing

 

The Run: 14 checks  water out there somewhere and lets hope we find it. Bit of everything except no hills indeed no bumps or any form of climb at all. Flat is the word to describe this run

The Walk: Just as flat . The entire walk is laid in pink flour so no walker can get lost, (you watch them)

 

 

 

The Crit :

The Hares Today on Run 2820 were :David Marks: Runs:200         Hares: 13      Av:15

Roger Smith: Runs:409     Hares:37         Av:11

Number of runners: 16

Returning Hashers ; Mike Blocki

Today’s Run

Web Site Info :Was it me but didn’t the directions seem far more complicated than they needed to be ?

The R.V. : We’ve been here before a few times, but plenty of shade and the sound of both the sea and the motorway. excellent

Run Crit: Well we set off and quickly were at check one. On swiftly to check 2 where there was a quick false left which no one took but several choose ahead and a few of us, tipped the wink by the hare, headed right. Now as we counted blobs, the falsie was called for those going ahead.

Those of you that have done walking safaris in Africa will know that what the white hunter with you fears the most if  the ground starts to shake is not an elephant nor a rhino coming at you but the unpredictable water buffalo. The ground really shook today and we heard branches in the orange grove started to snap and crash to the ground, snorts emanated from the dense bush   and then breaking cover just ahead of us  came a-charging on a short cut from the ahead falsie both Simon Carroll and Ben Cooper what a fearful  sight.

 Off we went over ploughed fields and on to the beach . Then loads of loops , the odd check back but with the shortcuts the pack stayed together till the submariner ( Woodsy) told us that the tree line  ahead was definitely the RV and off we back runners went eager for a beer. What were we doing listening to a submariner who barley ever sees the topography ? When we got there he said oh no hang on  it’s those ones over there. Four times we reached sets of trees until he got the last one right. All in all a shite run.

Walk Crit: by Ray

We walked out led by the Hare and it being Roger the talk quickly moved to Arsenal and some bloke called Wenger. After their last performance the walkers quickly agreed that he was past his sell by date, that’s Wenger not Roger, but more on that later. We walked on and on and then on some more. It was hot and the RV and cold beer was getting further and further away. On we marched with the village of Kouklia getting clearer and clearer on the skyline and the RV hazier and hazier. Eventually the walkers called a halt and what ensued was what  these days is known as an honest and frank discussion. This resulted in the Hare being democratically overthrown and the walkers turning for home and the cold beer. So forty three  mins after leaving we were back in our seats with icy colds in our hands .  Shite walk perfect ending.

Things for the good of the Hash?

Well a little Hash History :

With 43rd anniversary on  August 15th  of  the second invasion of Cyprus by  Turkey in 1974,. What I wondered happened to the Hash during the two invasions ? So I took a look in the archives in my garage. There was a run on July 8th with  8 hashers from the 23 man run list turning up. No run took place on July 15th the day Makarios was overthrown and the first Turkish Invasion took place on July 20th

There was a run on  August 12th when 13 hashers turned up but made up  mainly of the school teachers from St Johns. The following Monday must have been cancelled when the Turks invaded and galloped south towards the Sovereign Bases and then it wasn’t  until the 9th of September that  hashes started again.

On that run by a show of hands Hashers voted to move the hash run from Mondays to Thursdays and that started on the first Thursday in October 1974.

When Commander G.J. “ Tank” Sherman R.N. became On. Pres in September 1975 ,he, without any of this democratic  show of hands stuff,  moved the Hash back to Mondays with the first one taking place  on the 6th of October 1975 . Then 2 years later  on 31st of May 1977  On Pres. Lt. Col.  Peter Morrison moved it  to Tuesday where it has remained ever since or until I do some more digging and discover it wasn't .

As an aside the On Pres, G. J. “ Tank” Sherman was a Fleet Air Arm pilot who on Feb 9th 1956 when flying a Sea Hawke collided with another Sea Hawke whilst on low flying exercise in Scotland.  Both pilots ejected using Martin-Baker ejection seats nicely linking to my crit of a few weeks ago as we now know one Epi Hash On. Pres.  had his life saved by the tests Ben Lynch did in the late 1940s.

Sport:

England crickets duly slaughtered the hapless West Indies in the First Day Night Test match in England. I’ll leave Nogsie to do the smile so we can bowl at you jokes.

Still the West Indies have nothing on The Utopians cricket XI formed in 1950 at Oxford University. They went 33 years without ever winning a game .Explaining this record, their handbook stated “ It’s not the winning but the taking part that matters. Indeed what choice do we have” They met their match however when they played The Southern Counties Universities XI in 1983 . Here was a team even more dedicated to just the taking part and victory could not be staved off despite their gallant attempts to do so. Indeed the team went on to record several more victories that season . So much so that older players appalled at this success replaced the team, and started to play again themselves in an attempt to recapture their lost verve !!

Next Week’s Run : Melanda Beach is a  Hash Splash. Bring your togs and towels.

Hares: Jim Burke, Mike Woods

Chop: FamaG for the last time with George

So to my true tale at the Crit:

In the early 1960’s during the school holidays I used to go to Oxted in Surrey and stay for a few days with a school friend. On occasions we would travel up to to London with his father on the 8.12 train in the morning . The train carriages in those days were all separate individual  compartments with a door on either side and two long  4 seater benches facing each other with a light above each seat.

My friend’s father travelled with 5 others who frequented  his local pub The George.

Four  got on with him at Oxted and the fifth person,  one stop up at Woldingham.

These were all quite big noises in their own professions and all wore the regulation bowler hat, carried a rolled umbrella , with a small rose in their jacket button hole and all had rather  worn leather briefcases from which they would pull either The Times or the Telegraph and would do the cryptic crossword on the journey up and back.

 However all had fought in the war and still retained a boyish sense of fun. So on the first of the month each religiously  put 5 shilling  into a kitty . The money was to fund firstly their annual Christmas lunch during which copious quantities of claret would be consumed. But more importantly  the remainder was to be used  to fund the fine of £5  for pulling the communication cord on the journey home after the lunch.  Straws were drawn on the journey to see who would get the pleasure  of actually pulling the cord.

But  when and why were train carriages  fitted with communication cords to stop the train ?

Well on this very day in 1864 a city banker Thomas Briggs boarded a first class compartment on the 10 p.m. train from Fenchurch Street to go to his home in Hackney Wick.

 As the train steamed through East London a lady in the next compartment was surprised to find herself being splattered with blood coming in through the open window and heard a howling which she thought was a dog in pain. On arrival at Hackney Wick she shouted to the guard who found the next compartment seats covered in blood and on the floor  a silver topped cane , a black leather bag and a battered black beaver hat .  The police were called and it wasn’t long before the driver of another train reported a lump on the tracks before the station. It was the body of Thomas Briggs and his son was called to identify him. This he did as well identifying  the silver cane and black bag as his father’s. But, he said, the hat he had never seen before, his own father possessing a very fine top hat from a  city hatter. Missing also was his fathers long gold chain and gold watch.

The nation was shocked at this first ever murder on the railways. “If a man can be murdered whilst sitting safely in a First Class compartment travelling home to his family” thundered The Telegraph “can we expect to be slain in our pew at Church next ? What is the world coming to ?”

A few days later a jeweller one John Death came forward to say he had bought a gold chain from a man with a german accent the day after the murder, putting the cash in one of his jeweller's boxes  and Briggs's son identified the chain as his fathers .

A few days after a John Mathews came forward to say his daughter had been given a box with the jewellers name on by a young German  Franz Muller who she was stepping out with. He also produced a photo of Muller.  His daughter later that day identified the black beaver hat as Mullers' .

What transpired then was probably one of the slowest murder chases in history. Muller was traced to his lodgings but had fled the day before catching a sailing ship the Victoria to New York using the money from the gold chain to buy his passage.

Two policemen then  boarded   the ironclad steamship S. S. City of Manchester and a week later arrived in New York. Three weeks after they arrived the Victoria docked having completed the same voyage but under sail . The three weeks, however , weren’t wasted  as the Union States, in the middle of their own civil war, and very upset at Britain’s tacit  support of the Confederacy, tried to block the extradition papers . They were, eventually  issued and Muller was arrested as he disembarked and returned to London. In his baggage the police found the missing gold watch and on his head the missing top hat.

He was tried,  found guilt and sentenced to be hung .

His hanging, because of the enormous publicity of this first ever railway murder, was  attended by over 40,000 people and became a very raucous affair. The drunken scenes led directly to a bill being passed in Parliament banning all future public executions in Britain.

On the scaffold Muller who had throughout his trial maintained his innocence turned to his German pastor and loudly asked for God’s forgiveness as he confessed he had indeed murdered Thomas Briggs.

It was realised that had Briggs been able to communicate with the driver and guard on the train he might well have been saved and as a result the first communication cord was introduced to train compartments in 1868.

As an aside I mentioned that on the Oxted train one of the party got on and off at Woldingham . On the 6.35 p.m. train which  they all traveled back on he would doze and always claimed that even fast asleep his subconscious  mind counted the stops and he would awake to get get off the train at his station.

The system seems to work well until one time when due to signalling issues the train came to an halt just outside Woldingham. The other five watched happily as he awoke took his briefcase and umbrella opened the door and fell out of the train onto the track. Picking himself up he clambered back into the carriage muttering “ dam silly of me” walked across to the door on the other side of the compartment  and, looking back to say goodbye, fell out onto the track on the other side.  

 

On On The Hash

 

 

 

 

Tales From 2819

The Pre Run Briefing

The Run: 7 checks, water at check 4  about a 45 min run then Grandad described what we all hoped was a fictitious run but as you will see from the run crit wasn’t ! The crit was interrupted on occasions  by Ray mentioning his amazing round of golf yesterday with a nett 65 .

The Walk: Young Joe has a map and will led the walkers

The Joke : A

 real Nogsie shocker that young Joe will use to help classmates who might have been unsure of sexual positions in the sex education class at his school.

On Out

The Crit :

The Hares Today on Run 2819 were :

Dave Norris: Runs: 1099        Hares:177      Av:6

Mike Norris: Runs: 42    Hares:8         Av:5

Joe Norris: Runs:12

   Hares:3     Av:4

Number of runners:19

Returning Hashers Mike and Joe Norris, Marshall Hughes

Guest: None

Today’s Run

Web Site Info :Well there was an address but no instructions but hey it’s August and too hot to quibble. As an Fyi the correct terminology is the most senior is called  just Norris followed by Norris Major, then Norris Minor and finally Norris Minimus

The R.V. : FamaG might be the home of the hash but this is the home of the Keo Beer and also boasts a large swimming pool and fully stocked bar. Several hashers have suggested to me that all R.V.s should now be selected on these criteria rather than being able to see the mountains, see the sea and see the motorway.

Run Crit: Well we ran out chuckling after Nogsie’s exaggerated description and guess what he wasn’t kidding. We ran across vast acres of ploughed fields , we ran through screw grass up to our armpits, we climbed through fences, we crawled under fences and pole vaulted over fences, we ran along motorway slip roads , we ran in storm drains . There were checks the length of some hares runs but with the check backs we mainly kept together and for an urban run probably par for the course, and talking of pars  has Ray mentioned his golf game to anyone yet ? So all in all a shite run .

Walk Crit: Roger

“ As the runners disappeared out of the back gate we were led out of the front gate very  ably by young Joe Norris. He had with him a map drawn by his grandfather and striding out at the front he led us around it until about the halfway point when he realised that the dear old boy had forgotten to give him the second half of the map. Wondrous thing old age isn’t it . Unfazed Joe led the walkers on around to pick up the runners trail down the aforementioned motorway slip road and to the fence hazard where we pointed out to him that we were all over 70 years old. He pointed out we could either get through it and get to the beer or walk all the way back the way we came. Amazing how agile 70 year olds can become when beer is on offer. “

Things for the good of the Hash?

The Trail Blazing Flour Company is indebted to Jimmy “fingers” Carroll who has managed to purloin three crates to hold the flour bottles. How he managed this feat is best left unsaid . Could I again ask hares not to put bottles still containing flour back in the crates with the  top with the hole still on it. Instead switch it back to the top without the hole and but the tops with holes in the plastic bag they came in.

The run on August the 29th will now be at the beach at Melanda but more importantly the Chop is to be at FamaG and those that don’t know as yet George and his wife are leaving the restaurant at the end of this month. So after many many years of hosting the hash this will be the final time the Epi Hash will be going there to be looked after by George and his family. We have a small present for George which I will present to him that evening so please do try to come along and give him a good send off.

 

Finally I have provisionally booked the Hillview Restaurant for our Christmas Black Tie event on December 13th.  I want it to be very much a Hash event this year with some awards , maybe the odd speech  and a few carols ably led by the Epi Hash House choristers  under the baton and beady eye of Ray Turford .

 

Sport: With the start of the English Premier League last weekend and given that, despite all the hype, in all probability not one of those teams will feature in the Champions League final in Kiev on May 26th 2018 it might be fun to look at some other heroic failures in the football world.

The EFL have introduced a new system of penalty shootouts this season so instead of team A then team B then team A again we have Team A then team B then team B  and then team A so A.B.B.A . which actually proved to be Chelsea’s Waterloo in the Charity Shield .( Get it Abba Waterloo. pay attention at the back please .)

I doubt the change would have helped the two teams competing in the Derby Community Cup Mickleover and Chellaston.

 A 1-1 draw after 90 minutes the teams went to a penalty shootout. Both teams then missed the first 62 penalty kicks in a feat of football that really gave supporters their monies worth as balls were scuffed, missed , blasted and ballooned over the bar or around the goal posts. Then one Dick Smith scored for Chellaston  but Mickleover were fired up and they equalised. Chellaston then went back to missing and when Sam Gadsby scored for Mickleover it was literally Mickle  over for Chellaston. The penalty shootout had lasted 92 minutes and is the first and only time that a shootout has lasted longer than the game itself.

And what about the fastest sending off ? The days are long gone when Bologna player Lorenzo was sent off  a leisurely 10 seconds after the kick off. No, no, the world is a more pacy place these days .

Lee Todd was shown a red card after just two seconds . The referee was standing next to the centre forward when he blew his whistle and Todd said “ Fuck Me ref that was loud” and was dismissed from the game  ! However even he hasn’t got the record for that goes to Keith Gillespie of Sheffield United who came on as a substitute against Reading , Gillespie ran onto the pitch and before the ref had sounded his whistle to re-start play  elbowed and flattened Stephen Hunt of Reading and was therefore  sent off in zero seconds.

Next Week’s Run : Koklia

Hares: David Marks, Roger Smith

Chop: Maria's

So to my true tale at the Crit:

On this day in 1928 the writer, theatre critic and TV personality Bernard Levin was born . To be honest I was never a great fan of Mr. Levin neither enjoying his politics nor his acerbic style of writing and interviewing . Indeed on the satirical show That Was The Week That Was in the 1960s , which aired live in those days, I was one of the millions of viewers who cheered the television set when he was punched off his stool by an enraged husband whose actress wife Levin had given a poor theatrical  review .

That said there are a couple of articles that he wrote which deserve another airing .

He was a great fan of Shakespeare and decried the fact that most people didn’t share his view of the great man’s plays. In defence he wrote this clever piece of which this is but a sample:

“If you cannot understand my argument, and declare ``It's Greek to me'', you are quoting Shakespeare; if you claim to be more sinned against than sinning, you are quoting Shakespeare; if you recall your salad days, you are quoting Shakespeare; if you act more in sorrow than in anger; if your wish is farther to the thought; if your lost property has vanished into thin air, you are quoting Shakespeare; if you have ever refused to budge an inch or suffered from green-eyed jealousy, if you have played fast and loose, if you have been tongue-tied, a tower of strength, hoodwinked or in a pickle, if you have knitted your brows, made a virtue of necessity, insisted on fair play, slept not one wink, stood on ceremony, danced attendance , laughed yourself into stitches, had short shrift, cold comfort or too much of a good thing, if you have seen better days or lived in a fool's paradise - it is a foregone conclusion that you are (as good luck would have it) quoting Shakespeare; even if you bid me good riddance and send me packing, if you wish I was dead as a door-nail, if you think I am an eyesore, a laughing stock, the devil incarnate, a stony-hearted villain, bloody-minded or a blinking idiot, then - by Jove! O Lord! Tut tut! For goodness' sake! What the dickens! But me no buts! - it is all one to me, for you are quoting Shakespeare.”

However my favourite is when as opera critic for The Times newspaper he reviewed  Sportini’s opera La Vestale in 1979 at the famous Wexford Festival in South Eastern Ireland.

But let me first set the stage ( excuse the pun) . The director wanting to provide the best visual experience for the audience given the large numbers of singers decided to use a slopping stage and to make the set more realistic covered that stage with formica tiles which whilst looking like marble have a downside in that they are also very slippery. The plan was therefore to cover them in lemon juice so the cast’s feet would stick to the floor . However on the afternoon before first night a diligent cleaning lady finding the stage sticky, cleaned and polished it.

That night the theatre was sold out and Levin with some 440 others settled in their seats to watch the opera.

The curtain went up and in all his  magnificence entered the Roman general Licinio who strode onto the stage fell flat on his back and slithered down the slope towards the footlights. Singing throughout he made several plucky attempts to get back upstage but decided in the end to stay where he was.; calculating no doubt that the next character to enter , his friend, Cinna would shortly be joining him down by the footlights.

On came Cinna who also, arms waving, hurtled down the stage and into the arms of his chum. The script had called for a friendly embrace and this they amply fulfilled clinging desperately to each other as they slipped and slid. .

The two then, still singing, worked their way gingerly along the edge of the stage like mountaineers seeking a route round an unbridgeable crevasse wrote the delighted Levin.

the pair tried to make for a pillar bearing the sacred vestal flame which they knew was embedded firmly in the stage but the three foot ascent up from the footlights  was proving impossible to them as one or other fell down.

However things improved with the entrance of the full chorus who literally throwing themselves into their roles also tried to make for the pillar which was in danger of becoming very crowded. Happily this chorus of centurions, gladiators and vestal virgins decided to form a daisy chain of mutual support  from the pillar across the stage to the side curtain with everyone clutching on to each other until they were all accommodated.

The audience was so moved by the performance most were now weeping and some struggled for breath .

Theologians tell us that the delights of the next world are eternal. Perhaps; but what is certain is that all earthly ones, alas, are temporary, and duly, after giving us a glimpse of the more enduring joy of Heaven  the entertainment came to an end when the first act of the opera did so, amid such cheering as I had never before heard in an opera house, and can never hope to hear again. In the interval before Act II, a member of the production staff walked back and forth across the stage, sprinkling it with the precious lemon nectar, and we, the audience, knew that our happiness was at an end.

 

On On The Hash

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tales From 2818

The Pre Run Briefing

The Run: Hot humid day after the rain last Sunday. 11 Checks today with water at check 9 ( we think) . 40 minutes of pleasant running in the Anogyra countryside

The Walk: 45mins mainly following the runners but follow the pink arrows for the loop

Stewie Glanfield: Today is the third anniversary of his death. Tales about him still abound and he was a real character on the Hash for many a year. Brandy will be drunk to his memory tonight at the Chop.

On Out

The Crit :

The Hares Today on Run 2818 were :

Peter Hogg: Runs:644         Hares:87      Av:7

Mike Jones: Runs:95     Hares: 15        Av:6

 Jimmy Carroll : Runs:1107   Hares:126      Av:9

Number of runners: 18. Returning Hashers: Giles Day, Brian Kay. Guest: Chris Clarkson ( a 3hour 15 minutes marathon runner so at last the gentlemen of the Epi Hash could measure themselves against a real runner . He was that blur on the run that went past us at every on on by the way)

Today’s Run

Web Site Info :Cracking directions though it must help having only one road in and out of ANOGYRA

The R.V. : Well, we are under a tree , not the biggest tree in this field but Peter’s favorite tree and despite the protestations of his two other  hares, as we all know, once decided, this man is not for turning.

Run Crit: Despite being a hare again this week I have thrown caution to the wind by not doing it myself  and Pat Chapman will give his final run crit. “I don’t have much to say about the run . It made use of the existing topography and rightly on a hot summer’s day was not testing at all. A gentle trot as promised . Being my last run I decided jog along in second gear enjoying the company of the other runners otherwise I might have missed the only excitement of the run when Jim Adair’s dog decided to try to mount a female goat much to the very vocal annoyance of the goat herderess (?) .”

Walk Crit: Now you might think this is a set up but not if you had heard Drew chuntering as he walked in so Drew Muir please the run crit.

“The walk set out following the runners and I was surprised to find myself seeming leading the pack  as the fastest walker, a joy I haven’t experienced for many a year. However after a time I decided that the Hare should really be guiding the flock so dropped back to allow Jimmy to the front . Within a couple of minutes we were completely lost. The sound of the runners and the bugle faded into the afternoon air and we were left, the blind leading the blind. We never did find the pink trail, we missed out on the water stop as that too remained illusive but 45 mins after leaving we stumbled back to the R.V.”

Things for the good of the Hash?

The next Sundowner run is on September 8th  at The Hashers Beach, followed by a  fish supper  at Melanda Beach Restaurant.  details will appear on the website soon.

Mike Ball has raised €325 for the hash charity following his swim  . So the totalled raised so far this year is now at just under €500 . So we are half way to our target of €1,000 .

Sport: Last week I mentioned the sportsman like behaviour of Lewis Hamilton but this week a news item caught my eye . ‘Stefano’ Varjas, a Hungarian engineer who claims to have invented the technology necessary to conceal a near-silent engine in a pedal racing bicycle, gave an interview to CBS’s 60 Minutes, in which he said he first sold his engines to an unnamed individual in 1998 for $2 million, agreeing to ten-year exclusivity and silence as part of the deal. He even gave a demonstration for the cameras of how the technology worked. This January an engine was found in the bike of the European cyclo-cross champion Femke Van den Driessche. Two months later, footage was captured using thermal cameras at two races in Italy that appeared to show heat patterns within frames and wheels consistent with the use of motors in the bikes of at least seven professional riders. Three time former Tour De France Champion Greg Le Monde confirmed that cycling authorities have known about motors for many years but will not do anything about it for fear of damaging the sport further . They even have a name for it motodoping as it achieves the same result of enhanced performance by using the engine up hills  without taking drugs.

Clearly a team that didn’t do drugs was the Rugby league side Runcorn Highfield. They went 75 games without a win between 1988 and 1991. The team was led by player manager Geoff Fletcher a man of indeterminate age who used to hang his wig in the changing room before the game. Runcorn also featured in the team the only one armed player  ever to play in the Rugby League and he was considered one of their best players. They also boasted a born again Christian who was continually sent off for violent conduct. To try improve crowd numbers Geoff Fletcher remembering the Twickenham streaker Erica Roe advertised for a girl with a 42 inch bust to do the same at their ground each home game but when there was no immediate response he said he could quite happily settle for 38inches. However by then the players had gone on strike as Runcorn refused to up their losing pay and only offered to increase  their win bonus.

Next Week’s Run : Erimi R.V. Dave’s house so bring swimmers and a towel

Hare: Dave Norris and clan.

Chop: Aphrodite Club Asian Buffet

So to my true tale at the Crit:

On this day in 1888 Valentine Henry Baker was born in North Wales and whose death in 1942 has led to date to the  saving of over 8,000 lives. His other claim to fame was that he was one of the few men that served in all three services during the First World War.

At the outbreak of WWI he volunteered for The Royal Navy and was assigned to 63rd Division The Royal Navy Brigade which regular hashers will remember from Peter Hogg’s crit and the poem about General Shute and the shite.

After being wounded with an inoperable bullet in his neck at Gallipoli, which he had in place for the rest of his life, he was discharged.

 However the Royal Welsh Fusiliers accepted him and he went back to war in 1915  in the trenches of France before volunteering  for the Royal Flying Corp Military Wing gaining his  wings in 1916 and a Military Cross 2 months later for outstanding bravery in an air battle. In 1918 he became part of the newly formed RAF winning the first ever Air Force Cross.

After the war Baker, realising the interest the public had in flying, set up a flying school at Heston Aerodrome and became known as an excellent trainer. He personally taught the future King Edward VIII , the future King George VI , Amy Johnson and an amazing woman,  Grace Drummond-Hay who had in 1929 become the first woman to circumnavigate the world on a Zeppelin airship.

But with the storm clouds of war gathering over Europe again, he sold the school in 1936 and joined with his old friend the brilliant engineer, Irishman, James Martin to form the Martin- Baker Aircraft Company to manufacture fighter aircraft that Martin designed and Baker tested .

Sadly on September 12th 1942 while testing the MB prototype 3 Baker experienced an engine seizure just after take off and whilst attempting to land in a field hit a tree stump and died in the fire despite the heroics of three farm hands.

James Martin was devastated by his friend’s death which he felt could have been avoided if he’d been able to get out of the aircraft quickly once it was  clear it was going to crash.

Martin had in 1942 already designed a canopy release for the Spitfire which used explosive bolts to shoot the canopy off allowing the pilot to roll the aircraft and literally fall out. He now  changed the whole focus of the Company and set about developing an idea he had had a few years before, namely a seat that  would rapidly eject from the aircraft with the pilot still sitting in it.

In 1944 Martin received a formal request from The Ministry of Defence  to develop his concept . The request followed the first fatality during the testing of the prototype Gloster Meteor using Frank Whittle’s jet engines ( It’s Marvellous how these crits interlink isn’t it !!) and the realisation that with this new generation of high speed  aircraft the ability of a pilot to release a cockpit canopy and clamber out onto a wing before launching himself into the air were over.

As no information was available on what effect the g-forces might have on the human body, a 16 feet  test rig was constructed at Denham airfield for readings to be taken. On 20 January 1945 a 200 pound  dummy was placed in the seat at the bottom of the rig and test fired . The readings taken ,however were inconclusive and so Martin asked if any employee would volunteer to be shot up in the air.

Step forward another Irishman Bernard  “Ben” Lynch a fitter with the company who sported a large handlebar moustache. On January 24th 1945 Ben was was fired to a height of just under 5 feet (1.5 m) with no ill effects felt. The size of the explosive charge was progressively increased until Lynch reached a height of 10 ft and declared that he was experiencing pain in his spine.

Martin worked hard to reduce the peak acceleration loads of almost 600 MPH, needed for the seat to clear the tailplane, the solution was to use a second charge firing in sequence whilst alterations to the seat would provide a posture to better protect the spine.

After 200 more firings  testing transferred to a new 65 ft rig, Ben Lynch again being the first to use it reached, in late 1945,  a height of just over 40 feet with enough upward velocity to easily clear a tailplane of a jet flying at 400 mph

Once this was achieved  airborne testing was needed and Ben Lynch again volunteered. The first mid-flight test ejection was  made on 24th July 1946.

 

 Ben ejected himself from the rear cockpit of a specially modified Meteor 3 fighter jet flying at 320 mph and at a height of 8000 ft. The whole system worked successfully and Lynch made a perfect landing . Subsequently he made a further 30 ejections, including every day at the Farnborough Air Show . It was some party trick. 

As an aside the Americans were working on an ejector seat as well but unable to find a Ben Lynch human volunteer were using drugged bears to test their seat.

In the early 1960s we as a family moved to Farnham Common in Bucks and The Royal Oak was our local pub. It was run by a friendly landlord Digby Bicknell . At one end of the public bar was a stool that was pointed out by Digby as “Ben’s seat and not to be used “ and at 6 each evening a portly  man still sporting an enormous handlebar moustache with an Irish accent and an ability to consume prodigious quantities of Guinness would sit down on the stool. This completely unassuming quietly spoken man we learnt was the man who tested the first ejection seat.   Ben suffering from severe back pain had taken early retirement from Martin-Baker , joked his 10-12 pints of Guinness a day were  purely medicinal and indeed  in those days Guinness was always on offer in NHS hospital wards.

He lived just above his means and like all of us used to cash his cheques with Digby at the pub . His, however ,Digby allowed to be post dated . By 1968 when Ben had his heart attack, Digby held about 5 months worth  of post dated cheques and was the first to his hospital bedside beating Ben’s wife by 30 minutes to find out the patient’s chances. The prognostic was good and three weeks later Ben was back on his stool in the bar clutching his new food diet which he had had his cardiologist  convert from food to pints of Guinness.

Ben’s tests have to date saved over 8,000 lives by flyers using the Martin Baker ejector seat alone . Technology has, as always, moved on with the  use of parachutes to control the emergency descent of an whole aircraft rather than just the pilot. An American company Ballistic Recovery Systems has already supplied Cessna with such a system and lives of both the pilot and the passengers have already been saved on their range of aircraft. 

So what about larger aircraft say the huge Airbus 380 will we ever be able to save the 600+ lives in the event of an emergency. Well at the moment it would require 21 chutes each the size of a football pitch to safely bring such an aircraft down to earth but say you could jettison  the wings, engines, tailplane and all the cargo etc and just bring self contained passenger pods to earth . Well there are several  companies working with the two large aircraft manufactures Boeing and Airbus  on just that idea and they confidentially predict that by 2050 aircraft fatalities will be a thing of the past.

On On The Hash

 

Tales From 2817....The MINDEN DAY RUN

 

The Pre Run Briefing on the Beach R.V.

Welcome to Run 2817 , air temperature 40C

17 hashers to go to the chop at FamaG the home of the hash.

The Run: 11 checks today with water between check 7 and 8 . Tom who, as always, ran the trail this morning at 7 a.m. says the run is 48 mins long but there are short cuts back here to the beach.

The Walk: 45 mins , carry water from the cooler

The Old Joke:

I meet an old friend yesterday who I hadn't seen for sometime. “What are you doing these days?” I asked “ Oh I’m preparing meals for the homeless, illegal immigrants, benefit fraudsters, drug addicts, piss heads and other assorted down and outs “

“ I guess you’re working in a charity centre ?” I said.

“ No” he replied “ I’m a chef at the local Weatherspoon's pub. “  On Out

 

 

 

The Crit :

The Hares Today on Run 2817 are : 

Mike Jones: Runs:94     Hares: 14        Av:7

Tom McSherry: Runs:1366     Hares:197  Av:7

Doug Clarke: Runs:227        Hares:21      Av.11

Number of runners: 21

Returning Hashers: Chris Snaith, Peter Duckworth

Guests: Keith Ford ( Peter Duckworth’s son in law), James Burke, Peter Burke and young Harry Burke ( part of the Burkes of Liverpool clan)

Today’s Run

Web Site Info :Stunning though I say so myself !!

The R.V. : It’s a beach, enough said.

Run Crit: As a hare and doing the Crit I was tempted to do the this bit of the crit myself which would have talked of  a dream run with the runners carrying Tom and me back to the R.V. shoulder high  in grateful recognition for the greatest run ever laid but instead Chris Snaith with the actual crit rather burst that bubble, calling into question the parenthood of one hare for indicating to a few hashers that  a falsie was on On On and the integrity of The On. Pres. for omitting to tell them they were happily running down a long check back. He did however like the new flour trails but all in all a shite run.

Walk Crit: Again oh the temptation to talk about how the walkers bathed Doug’s feet in cooling sea water at the end of the walk, so amazed were they at the the trail laid but instead fresh from his aquatic endeavours whilst raising an amazing €300 for the hash charity this year Prostate Research , Mike Ball    said Doug filled the walkers with confidence by informing them he had never been in the area before and would they please keep the runners in sight ( never a difficult task with some of our more physically challenged slower runners) lest the walking group got lost. The walkers  humming the tune The Grand Old Duke of York then emulated the Duke’s 10,000 men before returning to the beach. A shite walk was had by all.

Things for the good of the Hash?

You will have seen on the Run List that this run is named the Minden Day run, what is Minden Day all about ? All will be revealed at the Chop tonight .

One interesting part of the On Pres role is that the previous On Pres arrives one morning at your house and offloads box after box of archive material some going back to 1967. Being inquisitive by nature I have started to read through some of it . In 1969 for instance a run fee was introduced to cover the cost of beer etc . It was 5 UK shillings a head, the Cyprus pound was tied to the UK pound until 1972 . If one just looks at inflation that 5 shillings is today worth €4.80 almost our present fee. Hash cash points out that members looking for refunds since the €5 fee was introduced are out of luck or words to that effect !

The 25th anniversary in 1992 which incidentally was held over the last weekend of October so as not to interfere with Remembrance Day had a black Tie do at the Officers Mess. Food and booze included for £C12.50 . Again taking inflation and the conversion of the old Cyprus pound into euro means that 12.50 is now €28 the exact same price for our own Black Tie do this year. As an aside the Anniversary run was run at Curium Stadium but on the Tuesday and was male only as per the original run in 1967 . Hares for the runs over that weekend were drawn from both Dhekelia and Amathus  hashes and the Monday run was a street  run in Limassol ending at the KEO factory for beers and luncheon. Food for thought at my meeting with KEO in September.

Sport: Just briefly this week regarding the  Lewis Hamilton, chauffeur supreme!  During the Hungarian Grand Prix this weekend  he requested his team mate to move over so he could get past to have a go at those damned Ferraris.  Alas, despite his heroics they held him off.  However, on the last lap 'Sir' Lewis moved over as promised and allowed his team mate to finish third thus sacrificing 3 valuable championship points.  What a pukka gent!

Stop Press, England beat South Africa at the Oval so it is on to Old Trafford on Friday for the decider. If history has anything to do with it England in their last nine home games have followed a victory with a heavy defeat so chances are this series will be drawn.

Next Week’s Run :Anogyra

Hare:Peter Hogg, Mike Jones, Jimmy Carroll

So to my true tale at the Crit:

On this day in 1983 the actor, raconteur and novelist  David Niven died at his home  up in the Alps in Switzerland.

Born in 1910 he was expelled from his prep school aged 11, ending his parents hopes of sending him to Eton, he then  failed the entrance exam to the Royal Naval College Dartmouth which used to take cadets at 13 and finally ended up at Stowe the newly opened Public School which he loved. At 18 he went to the RMA at Sandhurst and on graduating applied for a Scottish regiment. On his form, as first choice, he  requested assignment to the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders or as second the Black Watch (Royal Highland Regiment), then jokingly wrote on the form, as his third choice, "anything but the Highland Light Infantry" (because he wrote the HLI wore tartan trews rather than kilts). He was, of course, immediately assigned to the HLI, and his comments were made known to the regiment ensuring a less than rapturous welcome for the young Niven.

The regiment sailed almost immediately to Malta to form part of the garrison and Niven arrived a few nights before the social event of the year The Governor’s Fancy Dress Ball.This event that had started back in 1824 was taken very seriously by all H.M. forces officers and wives . Thousands were spent on lavish fancy dress outfits and the high spot was the grand parade at midnight. 

On the night of the Ball,  Niven and a fellow officer had been drinking dry martinis in some considerable quantity and on seeing a couple of goat skin rugs on the Mess floor decided to enter the fancy dress parade. Donning the skins they found antlers to tie on their heads and two footballs each which they tied to their trousers to simulate the goats large balls. Arriving just before midnight they entered the parade and quite quickly became aware that the Admirals, Air Vice Marshals and Brigadiers judging the event  were less than amused at the entry of two clearly drunken goats.

Undeterred they arrived in front of the judges box and Niven shouted squat to his companion . The two so called goats squatted and each released two handfuls of black olives they had taken from the Mess bar . The defecating goats were quickly seized and thrown out .

Niven didn’t enjoy life in the peacetime Army and in 1933 resigned his commission and went to Hollywood and became an actor.

One of his stories about that Golden Age of Hollywood concerned the young Walt Disney who to promote his new movie Pinocchio hired 12 male and female midgets dressed as Pinocchio who danced on the flat roof of the cinema where the premier was taking place  that night. Things went well till lunchtime when with lunch someone sent up two bottles of bourbon. The midgets soon started playing strip poker and once all were naked began dancing on the roof . Disney was less than amused and telephoned the fire brigade to get them down. This they did wonderfully well by putting the midgets into pillow cases to carry them down !

   He also became part of The Hollywood Raj a group of British actors like Rex Harrison , Stan Laurel and  British script writers one of whom was Eric Lucque who was a great drinking mate of  Niven’s.

In 1939 at the outbreak of war Niven returned to the UK and re-joined the Army as did Eric Lucque . Both took part in the D-Day landings Niven by then a Lt.Colonel and Lucque a Major and both separately with their units fought their way towards Berlin.  At the end of the war Niven returned to Hollywood while Eric Lucque demobbed in 1947 and having married and bought a house decided stay in England and join the newly formed British European Airways.

Unlike David Niven his one time drinking mate, Eric’s career with BEA was less than illustrious. He found an ideal role as a salesman, which allowed him to drink on expenses most of the day, with totally job safety  in a nationalised industry whose charter’s second clause was “it shall be run for the good of the staff.”

In 1973 an handsome, debonaire, smartly suited guy, yes me again, was promoted out of reservations and became a sales rep just as BEA merged with BOAC to become British Airways. My new desk in the sales office was alongside Eric’s and my first ever call was to go with him as he handed over to me one of his favourite accounts Gordons Gin in the City . We met there at 9.30 in the morning and by 9.43 were standing by the in house bar they had on top of the building drinking large pink gins. I still only have vague recollections of a kindly cabbie almost carrying me up the 97 stairs to my flat in South Kensington at about 4 pm.

Eric looked a lot like David Niven , the same moustache, the wrinkled forehead and a certain old world charm. He was, in his cups, and at the age of 64 a bit of a bore to us youngsters but like most  that truly  fought in World War 2 he never ever talked about his wartime  experiences . Indeed his old drinking mate Niven when pressed as to why he hadn’t written about his wartime exploits in his autobiography said that at the end of the war he had returned to the D day landing area and walked around one of the cemeteries  which had in it  27,000 graves. Niven he said to himself  those graves are 27,000 reasons why you should never talk about your own war.

A month after I became a Sales Rep the Parisian Tourist Board invited the British Airways City of London sales team of which Eric and I were members on a 3 day junket to Paris ostensibly for us to be able to better sell their city .

On the first night at Le Crazy Horse Cabaret Eric , after plenty of champagne, somehow found his way on to the stage and received a kiss from each of the semi-naked and naked girls  who waived the bouncer away as the they said Eric was so charmingly English. Indeed he returned to the table covered in lipstick and clutching various items of clothing they had given him.The Parisian Tourist Board people, however, didn’t see the funny side and threatened to cancel the trip unless  Eric was packed off back to the hotel which he duly was . 

The next morning to be honest we rather hoped Eric might stay in bed rather than possibly embarrass us on what  we hoped was the high spot of the trip a two hour wine tasting in the Paris cellar of a Loire wine grower. How very wrong we were on both counts

 In smart blazer, regimental tie and slacks he was the first on the bus .

The first half hour of the tasting was a real disappointment the very ordinary wine on offer flowed like treacle and it was clear the staff couldn’t wait to get rid of us as we clearly weren’t going to buy anything.

 Then an elderly Frenchman appeared from one of the doors and, in the dim light, studied Eric for a moment before ,uttering a torrent of French, he ran over and hugged him and kissed him on both checks whilst constantly  saying Major Lucque, Major Lucque.

 What we asked Eric was this all about. “My god” he said “I’ve just realised I  liberated this man’s vineyards from the Krauts in 1944 , small world what ?” before being hugged again.

The elderly man, clearly Le Patron, had the cellar door closed after, on Eric’s order, tossing out the two Parisian Tourist board people that had packed him off to bed the night before.

The very ordinary wine disappeared and up from the cellar came Loire wines that were nothing less than magnificent. A table was laid and a superb luncheon was served with Eric as  the guest of honour and us hangers on simply riding on his coattails .

I have  dined out on this story ever since and the long dead Eric Lucque is still very much remembered by the 5 of us that were with him that day . 

On On The Hash

 

At the Minden Day Chop.....to follow in 2018!

 

 

 

Tales From 2816

The Hares Today on Run

 2816 were: 

Nick Smith: Runs:

 531 Hares:57 , David Marks: Runs:188 (in dispute) Hares:12 (in dispute)Roger Smith: Runs:405   Hares:36

Number of runners: 19

Returning Hashers: Jim Adair, Peter Conn, Simon McCrorry andTom McSherry

 Today’s Run

 Web Site Info :Marvellously clear directions as long as the eager hasher knows his East from his West which given the sudden change of direction on the website the hares clearly didn’t !!!

The R.V. :Compact spri

ngs to mind, but plenty of shade.  Nogsie however complains was hit by an avocado and has concussion so if he seems stranger than normal you know why.

 Things for the good of the Hash?

 Next week we few, we happy few, we band of brothers start our August runs . These are what I am  calling Hash Lite with only one hare but if that lonesome hare can cajole , dupe, entice, entrap , beguile, inveigle , seduce or simply ask someone to help him and if they’re a hasher, they can also have a hare. 

The focus in August is as much on the social side of hashing whilst still taking some exercise to work up the necessary said thirst . So I thought  a run of 35- 40 mins, followed by a mellow  hour  of supping the amber liquid before hitting the chop at about 1830   ?

 Clear directions will be on the website and signage will be fairly minimal.

Walkers will need to put all their fingers and toes together as they need to count to a thousand before they set off following the blue trail, their short cuts will be shown in pink. Lots of holding checks to allow, certainly in my case, the hare to catch up . When clearly on a track look for change of direction arrows rather than lots of flour dashes. So do please come along and enjoy the conviviality that small numbers on the hash generate and I especially mean you Tom, it is great to have you back.

 Hopefully you saw on the website that Bollo will be doing his Captain Mathew Webb impersonation in the waters off Cyprus on Friday and is donating all he raises to the Hash charity Prostate Research . Bollo will you say a few words??????????

Jim Burke the CEO Of the Blazing Tails flour company would also like to say a few words??????

 Sport: Chris Froome , who must be one of the  greatest  cyclist’s ever, as the French hate him so much, won his fourth Tour De France, Indian women cricketers clearly thought that at Lords it was de rigour to emulate the England mens cricket team and collapse as they lost their last 7 wickets for just 28 runs and the England women’s team won the World Cup.  Rory McIlroy is probably regretting his decision to “ rest up’ rather than do the practise round last Wednesday as Jordan Spieth showed him what a real  fight back means as he picked up 5 shots over the last 5 holes at Royal Birkdale and finally are you guys, like me, a bit wary of all these new found so called Brits that keep appearing in British sport  draped in union jacks . I must admit I didn’t really go along with the idea of Johanna Konta being a true blooded Brit. Hungarian parents and born in Australia only moved to Britain when 12 and left immediately to learn her tennis in Florida. But  then at Wimbledon she did what all we true Brits do so well, she lost gracefully to an opponent  she had easily beaten a few months earlier namely one of the Williams brothers . So now I personally welcome her as a real Brit who knows how to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, plus of course she has a great pair of legs.

 Next Week’s Run :  A Hash Splash at Paramali Beach

 Hare: Me. Shortish run and walk followed by a swim so wear your swimming togs and bring a towel and a change of clothes if you want to swim. Remember also to bring your rubbers ( shoes for the beach that is) as it is quite pebbly .

Chop: Fama G

 So to my true tale at the Crit:

 On this very day in 1976 at about 10 a.m. guests started to arrive in the new Concorde Lounge at Terminal 3 LHR and were welcomed at the door by the BA Chairman Sir Ross Stainton. He was taking a group of the Great and the Good to Washington D.C. ,  following the successful U.S. Supreme Court appeal to allow Concorde to operate there.

New York, the Blue Ribbon route, was still over a year away.

The 40 guests represented leaders of industry, City of London financiers, a few showbiz and sporting people for publicity and a smattering of names from the Aviation industry .

The freebies were supplemented by just 28 paying passengers on the scheduled flight.

Concorde on the Washington route was at the extreme of her range and a restricted payload of 68  from the normal 100 seats available was necessary in summer when  it was hot and humid as jet engines perform less effectively in such conditions.

As the guests nibbled on caviar and sipped vintage champagne one of them  a small, he was barely  5ft 2, nondescript man with white hair and in a rather scruffy suit ,  sat chain  smoking the free cigarettes on offer in the lounge, whilst working on papers from his briefcase.

At 12.30 the passengers left the lounge and boarded Concorde at Gate 3 just a 2 minute walk away. After ordering post take off drinks    they settled into their 2x2 seats and waited expectantly for their supersonic flight .

On the flight deck the pilots completed final checks and the flight engineer, because the rear 32 seats were empty, moved  fuel from the wing tanks to the rear tank to improve trim on take off. Just before 1300hrs The Captain called the Control Tower. “Speedbird Concorde 593 ready for pushback”.

Speedbird was the normal BA callsign followed by the flight number  but worldwide  AirTraffic Control had agreed to the adding of Concorde to alert them to the special characteristics of the aircraft. One such was that Concorde burnt large amounts of fuel whilst on the ground so ATC would normally expedite the taxi to the runway threshold. This they did on that day and as Concorde passed the waiting aircraft, flight crews of these competitor airlines would alert their passengers and allow them to release seat belts to view her as she passed  them.

Traffic started to slow or pull in on the A4 and  M4 to watch and at the end of runway 28R hundreds of cars and many hundreds of spectators  were already there to view the takeoff . This feature of the daily Concorde services would continue until she was withdrawn from service.

 At 1310  the Captain wound the engines up to full throttle, released the brakes , switched on the afterburners and like a rocket Concorde accelerated. At 220 mph the First Officer shouted V1 meaning Concorde was committed to fly as there now wasn’t enough runway left to abort the take off. Then at 250 mph he shouted  VR rotate and  the Captain pulled back  the stick and like a bird Concorde soared into the afternoon sky.

Just after the Staines Reservoir the afterburners were turned off for noise abatement and she cruised west as the guests enjoyed cocktails and canopies though most chose the option offered  by the cabin crew of a bottle of vintage Krug ’69 champagne and two glasses per set of seats.

Over the Bristol Channel the Captain reactivated the afterburners  and the guests felt the telltale double nudge in the their backs  as Concorde accelerated. They watched the tachometer displayed in the cabin as the speed increased as she climbed, M.95 then Mach 1 the speed of sound 676 mph, a barrier to supersonic flight broken less than 30 years before.  And still the speed went up Mach 1.75 then Mach 2 twice the speed of sound and finally Mach 2.01 , the cruising speed of this amazing aircraft ,1,325 mph.

Concorde was now travelling faster than a rifle bullet and yet passengers were enjoying a fillet steak 58,000 feet or 11 miles above sea level. Those looking out of the small windows  commented on how hot the glass was,  but were even more  amazed to clearly  see the curvature of the earth beneath them and the dark blue of space above them.  The only thing apart from the Tachometer that told them they were moving so fast was that occasionally they flew over a subsonic aeroplane like a  Boeing 747 20,000 feet below them that  almost appeared to going backwards, Cocorde  was flying over 800 miles an hour  faster than that aircraft.

The airframe had expanded by almost a foot in length due to the frictional heat  and some flight engineers in the small cockpit still made the mistake of then slipping their  briefcase behind their seat to give themselves more room  and on landing found they couldn’t remove it.

 As I said Concorde was at the limit of her operational range on the Washington sector .

Normally aircraft file a plan to their destination and select an alternative airport should they not be able to land there. Regulations state there has to be 2 hours fuel left on board to circle or fly on as well as  contingency fuel to allow for a taxi  off an active runway  on arrival at the alternate . Concorde had received permission to always flight plan to Halifax, Nova Scotia with Washington D.C. the actual destination  as the alternative. This allowed her to actually arrive with a zero fuel weight ( thats almost empty in normal speak) with just just enough fuel to taxi. So 40 mins out from Halifax the crew thoroughly checked weather at Washington, fuel burn so far, fuel available and then the Captain committed to fly on . Oblivious to all this passengers were lighting their complimentary Havana cigars and sipping Courvoisier XO  brandy. Our rather scruffy small man sitting in 10A lit his 25th cigarette of the day and returned to the complex  math problem he was solving.

At 11.55 Concorde landed at 170 mph on a hot and humid June day in Washington . The passengers were much amused to have landed one hour 15 minutes before they had taken off and chatted about this and their experiences as they walked up the finger.

 

Below them on the ground by the baggage hold stood a handsome, debonair, smartly suited young man on his first British Airways overseas posting. Yes, you guessed it, Me .

I had arrived there a  month before and on this day had been asked to oversee the unloading of the VIP group’s bags which were to go on a truck straight to the hotel. It was hardly an onerous job as the baggage handling  crew were all Teamsters union guys and if I had touched any part of a bag they were unloading they would have walked out on strike. Welcome to the land of the free, I thought.

Having stood outside in the 98% humidity  I was about to seek out the airport bar when my then Manager asked me to check the arrivals hall and make sure there were no stragglers as there seems to be one VIP limo left on the rank.

 I walked through arrivals and there near the carousel sat the rather scruffy small man smoking a cigarette. He had a Concorde label on his briefcase   .

 “Are you part of Ross Stainton’s group” I asked. “Yes” he replied “but my suitcase has not arrived”. I explained the bag situation to him and asked his name. “Oh me, I’m Frank Whittle, you’ve probably never heard of me but many years ago I had something to do with jet engines”.

I realised I was shaking the hand of the man who at the age of just 22, whilst serving in the RAF, had, after pondering the problem of how to make aircraft fly higher and faster, invented the gas turbine jet, the predecessor of every jet engine built today.

Whittle patented the idea but because the RAF had not deemed it to be a secret, his patent could be seen by rivals, including Germany, who recognised its potential and began their own jet engine programme. This enabled the Luftwaffe to win the race to develop the world’s first operational jet fighter, the Messerschmitt 262, which entered service in 1944. The Air Ministry, the RAF and the British government however were uninterested and throughout the thirties restricted funding to Whittle’s project and indeed even  after the first successful flight in 1941 by a Gloster E28 Churchill shared the jet engine design with the Americans, as the top secret part of the lend lease programme .

Hans von Ohann the developer of the German jet always accepted that, through the patent filed in London, he had used the design details shown there.  However more importantly he also said that his subsequent design was what he called dead end technology and was going nowhere. Whittle he said was the true inventor of the jet engine as his design and subsequent modifications meant his  technology was robust and could continue to develop . Von Ohann also  constantly said that "If Whittle had been given the money we were , Britain would have been six years ahead of us”. He went on to say

“If Hitler and Goering had heard in 1936 that there was a man in England who can fly at 500mph in a small experimental plane and that plane will be coming into development  as a fighter for the RAF by 1939 it is likely that World War II would not have come into being."

As I sat in that limo with Sir Frank that day watching him smoke his cigarettes and talk, I knew he was the only real VIP on that trip .

Hey, and BA had nearly left him sitting on a baggage carousel at  Washington Dulles Airport !!

 

On On The Hash

 

 

 

"Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun,

The Japanese don´t care to, the Chinese wouldn´t dare to,

Hindus and Argentines sleep firmly from twelve to one

But Englishmen detest-a siesta.

In the Philippines they have lovely screens to protect you from the glare.

In the Malay States, there are hats like plates which the Britishers won't wear.

At twelve noon the natives swoon and no further work is done,

But mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun."

If you substitute 

Epi Hashers for Englishmen it about sums us up today doesn’t it? 39C on my weather station when I left home.

I promise to try and keep the crit short so more beer can be consumed especially by me.

The Hares Today on Run 2813 The Stars and Stripes Run

Pat Chapman: Runs: 428 Hares: 54  Av:8

Jim Burke: Runs:1037   Hares:155  Av:7

George Trotter: Runs: 122  Hares: 12     Av.12

Number of runners:22

Returning Hashers: Ben Cooper, Marshall

Hughes, Mike Woods.

Today’s Run

Web Site Info : Wow a blind man could have followed those directions so even an Epi hasher probably stood a chance but maybe not

The R.V. :As an airline man it is nice to be alongside the outer marker for the ILS at Paphos Airport . the lack of aircraft noise is because like hashers many pilots are short cutting bastards and join the ILS at the middle marker and thank god for this lonesome tree.

Things for the good of the Hash?

A couple of awards, so firstly

Aubrey O Callaghan has successfully navigated his way to, and has now rounded the first marker on his hopefully long voyage onboard the Epi Hash by achieving 100 runs

and Pat Chapman leaves us today after 15 years of hashing to move to East Anglia where, when the East wind blows, he will be able to smell Moscow rather than Mike Hillyer’s grass cuttings.

Pat’s first hare was on 5th of March 2003 with Pat Moore and John Telford up in Souni. It was supposed to be a 45 minute run with  5 checks . From the crit in Inside Angle it seems that the three hares, at each check,  laid so many falsies that quite quickly the run became chaotic  with hashers wandering about  trying to find any sign of the real trail and several voting with their feet and returning to the RV . However even as a virgin Hare Pat knew which side his bread was buttered, for at check 6 , yes I know they said 5 checks but it was that type of run, the hashers again searched without success until miraculously a Welsh voice was heard above the rest. The On Pres one Mike “Bollo” Ball had picked up a check and, I’m sure quite coincidently, standing right alongside him was a certain virgin hare Pat Chapman saving he and his fellow hares from the piss pot. They returned to the RV to find a party of Property Developers in the location measuring out plots of land and in fact the hash never returned to that RV which is now an housing estate.

Pat, as a Hare, did, over the years, develop a laconic style of describing what were some fairly petrifying  trails that  he had laid.  I have some  examples given to me by the few survivors of those Royal Marine  runs.

"When between checks 3 and 4, if you must trip and fall ensure you dive left. On the right is a 200 foot drop which will result in death and much embarrassment to the Hash."

"When between checks 3 and 4 ensure you always maintain 3 points of contact with the rock face, if you don't then you may die".

" Between checks 3 and 4 there is a minor obstacle involving a rockface. Assistance for the infirm will be provided.” When the Hashers arrived at the said rock face  the assistance turned out to be  a rope hanging down from the ledge above which they could  climb up. !

"Between checks 3 and 4 there is a small obstacle in the form of an expanse of water. Hashers should remove socks and shoes and place them in the boxes provided before entering the water to swim across to the other side. Hashers unable to swim that distance will unfortunately drown and next of kin will be notified."

Gentlemen of The Epi Hash please raise your glasses and the toast is Pat Chapman let him find a hill in East Anglia to climb.

Sport: Henley Royal Regatta finished on Sunday. The Americans entered 60 crews and left with no silverware at all which is always satisfying especially on July 4th ! Unfortunately the German National eight gave the British National eight a lesson in rowing but the British four repaid the gesture by trouncing the Italian four that had beaten them by 4 lengths just 3 weeks before .

Nothing much else of any consequence happened last weekend oh The British and Irish Lions beat the All Blacks ,well 14 of them. There is I understand no truth in the rumour that Sony Boy Williams will be getting a knighthood in the Queens honours list .

Andy Murray completed his warm up for Wimbledon by playing no tennis at all and then announced he was ready. Djokovic sampled the sea air in Eastbourne for the first and having been to Eastbourne myself several times I’m sure last time, and on Day 1 of Wimbledon British hope or is that hopeless Laura Robson earned £35,000 for just 67 minutes of tennis before being knocked out of the competition .  

Next Week’s run : Souni (Again)

Hares:  Mike Hillyer, Mike Woods and Brian Lidell

Chop:  Lenia’s ,gosh it seems like only a week ago since we were there doesn’t it. My god it is just a week ago

It is American Independence Day today the day Britain lost it’s 13 colonies in the new world and the seeds were sown for the French Revolution. However rather than talk about the failings of the British General Lord Howe which would fill several books and on such a hot day I thought I’d jump straight to :

and Finally

There is no doubt American English now rules the world and as Brits we surely have mixed feelings about it. English is our language and along with football, rugby, cricket , croquet , golf, ferret legging, shin kicking and underwater hockey it is what  we might be remembered for . Mind you many words we use happily today thinking them to be British words came from across the pond. Belittle came with Thomas Jefferson when he address parliament with his No taxation without representation speech. The Times thundered “ shame on you Mr Jefferson, belittle, what an expression. “ Reliable” is another when we used to use trustworthy, so is “call it a day” “easy money”, “on the level” and of course “wise guy”. . Another load of words came with the yanks in the first world war, “cakewalk”, “give the game away”, “to railroad”, “sex appeal” , “gangster”, “down and out”  and “to not give a hoot”.  In the 1960’s we got “back off” , “spin off” and “blue collar”.

However, personally, I “draw the line” , yes another Americanism , at the use of American words that have no meaning outside of America like “a ball park figure” , “Monday morning quarterbacking” and “stepping up to the plate” all heard on the BBC during  election night alone. 

At least we haven't sunk to zee instead of zed yet.

In 1977 at one in the morning Geraldine and I left a bar called the Hawke and Dove on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C.  a little socially confused after a day of drinking. We had been given careful  instructions on how to find Route 50 which would get us home to Annapolis, Maryland where we lived.  Both of us promptly forgot them and we found ourselves driving in the black area south of 10th street when a cop car stopped us. The cop holstered his gun and the other cop broke his shotgun which he had aimed through the rear window when he heard my British accent ( 90% of D.C. cops are shot by motorists at night) but asked me to walk the yellow line in the middle of the road. This test I failed miserably and Geraldine was unable to get out of the car let alone walk a line.  Okay said the cop say the alphabet backwards. I think I would have had trouble saying it forwards but started off  bravely Zed. What he asked zed I replied . Your wrong its Zee no I argued in English it is zed . Where the hell have you been to get so drunk he asked. I didn’t think the Hawke and Dove carried much weight but luckily remembered that in my in tray that day had arrived an invite to the Queens Birthday party at the British Embassy. Celebrating the Queen of England’s birthday I slurred and I swear you not, both cops saluted. Where are you trying to get to he asked ? Route 50 I replied . Okay I’ll tell you what follow us and when I flash the lights turn left and it will take you onto 50. So in convoy we drove out of the black area. I turned to Geraldine and asked what instructions he had given us but neither of us could remember so when he flashed we continued to follow him. We all stopped again and the cop returned to my window. Your not making this easy mac . We are going  to turn around and when I flash turn right if you don't I’m taking you in and for Christ sake please drive carefully on Route 50.

By now I was sobering up and on the return when he flashed his lights I turned right and lived to drive another day

On On The Hash

 

 

Tales from 2012

The Hares Today on Run 2812

Aubrey O’Callaghan:  Runs:99  Hares:12   Av:8

Mike Blocki: 

Runs:163   Ha

res:25  Av:6

Laurie Mitchell: Runs:731   Hares:87      Av.8

Number of runners: 18

Today’s Run

Web Site Info : Clear instructions and the signage good. Most impressed that having cut thru Radio Sonde there was a sign to bring us into the RV

R.V. Itself :At least there’s a tree is the best I can say

Run Crit: By Jim Burke

Walk Crit: By Jimmy Carroll

Things for the good of the Hash?

As you can see I am modelling the new Hash hat   yours for only €12. We now have ladies polo shirts in various colours and sizes for €14. A Hare running shirt that wicks for €12   and new Hare T shirt will follow soon. Ship2 Shore are now working on sweatshirts for the winter but anything else hashers want can be organised. Ship2Shore can also put the Hash logo on any item of clothing you might want for a fee of €2, just pop in to the store at Limassol Marina .

Sport: Well some weekends are just best forgotten . The British and Irish Lions got a thumping  lesson in fast ball, though to be fair their own try was fantastic.

Scotland lost to Fiji 22-27 and though Wales beat Samoa 17-19  to put that win in context this was the Somoan side that were recently beaten 78-0 by the All Blacks

Sebastian Vettel decided to  have the F1 equivalent of a bar room brawl with Lewis Hamilton,

England 20/20 having snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in the second game won the series on Sunday despite Willey attempting to hand it to South Africa with his final few overs and Rory McIroy spent the first three days of The Travelers tourney angrily tweeting fans who claimed he looked bored playing golf these days telling them they were wrong, not about him being bored, but in under estimating his wealth, he says it’s  $200 Million if your interested.

and finally for the good of the hash plans for August but first some verse with apologies to young Will Shakespeare  :

“We few, we happy few, we band of brothers

for he that runs with us in August shall be our brother,

and epi hashers away this August time,

shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here,

 and hold their manhoods cheap, whiles any speak that ran with us this August.”

You might be wondering why Mike Hillyer hasn’t been sniffing around you like a rutting buck  asking if you can hare in August.

That’s because I’m introducing a new system for that month only. It seems somewhat daft that 3 hares lay a trail for 8-12 other hashers to run around . However nor should the 10-15 hashers left on Island be deprived of their Tuesday exercise, beers and chop .

Instead it seemed easier to use a few hashers who know an area really well to lay a 40 min trail, whilst they would normally be out walking there anyway. Those of you now looking at your feet dreading an appeal for volunteers to come forward can look up again. I have already filled every Tuesday for the month. So when the run list goes up you will see but one name as hare . Our flour trail allows us to show the angles to be explored for the On On and to indicate a holding check for, in my case, the hare to catch up. This is an experiment and we can tinker with it as we go on and decide at the end if it worked or not. Normal service will be resumed at the end of August so expect the rutting Hillyer to come down your burrow and sniff you out..

Next Week’s run :Pissouri

Hares: Jim Burke, Pat Chapman, George Trotter

Chop:  Platea

And so to this weeks true tale at  the Crit

In 1831 Edgar Allen Poe penned his famous poem called  To Helen and thousands of schoolboys like me have, over the years, had to sit and learnt it by heart . I still remember the first verse,

Helen thy beauty is to me,

Like those Nicean barks of yore

That gently o’er the perfumed sea,

the weary, way worn, wanderer bore,

To his own native shore

Poe was, of course, writing about Helen of Troy the most beautiful woman in  Ancient  Greece . You all know the story and the brilliant wheeze the Greeks came up with The Trojan Horse ; which, as an aside, gave us the expression Beware of Greeks bearing gifts. An expression that many many Brits should probably  have borne in mind when they first decided to move to Cyprus rather than leaving their brains on the tarmac at Gatwick.

The idea of the Trojan Horse as a way of getting troops into an enemy stronghold has interested military commanders ever since.

On this day June 27th 1976 Air France flight 139 , departed from Tel Aviv, Israel, carrying 246  passengers and a crew of 12. The plane flew to Athens, where it picked up an additional 58 passengers, . It departed for Paris at 12:30 pm.

 Just after takeoff, the flight was hijacked by two Palestinians from the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine , and  two Germans from the German Revolutionary Cell who had boarded in Athens. The hijackers diverted the flight first to Benghazi, and then to Entebbe where Idi Amin welcomed the plane  on June 28th.

There the hijackers issued  their demands: In addition to a ransom of $5 million  for the release of the airplane, they demanded the release of 53 Palestinian and Pro-Palestinian militants, 40 of whom were prisoners in Israel. They threatened that if these demands were not met, they would begin to kill hostages . Negotiators secured a steady release of passengers until by July 3rd,  84 Israeli passengers, 10 French passengers who despite their French passports proudly declared their Jewish heritage    and the 12 Air France crew remained in The old Terminal building at Entebbe.

However when the hijackers refused to meet with Yassar Arafat the leader of the PLO to negotiate the release of the Israeli passengers they decided on military action.

Mossad Interviewed the released passengers in Paris and obtained a clear picture of the numbers of hijackers, their weaponry and most importantly the numbers and positions of the Ugandan troops that surrounded the outside of the terminal building.

Luckily an Israeli firm had built the Terminal so Israeli commandos  practised on a replica quickly  built in Tel Aviv  .

However the big problem was how to get the  Israeli commandos  past the cordon of Ugandan troops and into the terminal to kill the hijackers. We need a Trojan Horse quipped one of the commandos . Brilliant said the commander but who would be able to pass through the cordon without question ? I know said the Mossad man  and a plan was hatched.

On July 4th taking off from Sharm el-Sheikh, the task force of 100 personnel  flew along the international flight path over the Red Sea, mostly flying at a height of no more than 100 ft to avoid radar detection. Near the south outlet of the Red Sea the 4 Hercules C-130s turned south and passed south of Djibouti. From there, they entered Ugandan air space.

With their cargo doors already open the C130s landed at Entebbe. From the first came the exact replica of Idi Amin’s black Mercedes and replicas of the two trucks that always accompanied him. 29 commandos got in the car and trucks and set off to the terminal building while the remaining forces secured the airfield , placed a cordon around the C130s and went off to blow up Idi Amin’s entire Air Force of 11 MIG fighters to prevent them following the task force.

The car and trucks passed through the cordon unopposed, The Trojan Horse had worked again.

The commandos  entered the terminal building  yelling in Hebrew and English for the hostages to lie down. Three didn’t and were shot dead. 25 minutes later the hijackers were all dead and the the hostages were out on the tarmac running for the waiting aircraft. Ugandan troops in the control tower opened fire wounding 5 commandos and killing the Israeli unit commander Jonathan Netanyahu the elder brother of the present Prime Minister of Israel.

The Israelis returned fire killing 45 Ugandan troops .

50 minutes after touching down the task force was back in the air with 102 rescued hostages and heading to Israel leaving Idi Amin his own Trojan Horse on the tarmac.

and Finally

Aubrey was telling me of problems when arriving in Sardinia on his yacht.

He said once in the crowded bay he was going back and forth through the anchorage, searching for a place to drop the hook before dark. Looking up to heaven he said, "Lord take pity on me.   If you find me a good spot, I will donate to the Hash charity, buy the brandy at every chop, lay flour trails happily and never mention trash again, declare my worldwide income to the Cyprus tax authorities, and never again give my crew all of the blame and none of the glory when sailing!"

Miraculously, the yacht with the best spot in the bay began pulling up anchor to leave.

Aubrey  looked up again and said, "Never mind God, I’ve found one myself."

On On The Hash

 

Tales from 2011

 

 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Tales from 2010
 

The Hares Today on Run 2810

Jim Burke:  Runs:1034      Hares:154   Av:7

Peter Hogg Runs:636      Hates:85   AV:7

Tina Burke: Runs: countless       Hares:aplenty      Av. an infinite number

 Number of runners: 28

 Today’s Run

 Web Site Info : Clear directions anyone could have found it and everyone did

 R.V. Itself : Bloody marvellous, the only decent tree in 20 sq Kilometres , you can see the sea and the motorway almost, and the wind machine over the road is  an inspiration.

 Things for the good of the Hash?

Just a couple of things now I have the wives here as you remember things whilst on Tuesdays I know I might as well be talking to the wind, and after several  Keos there is certainly  plenty of that about.

 As many of you will have seen today we are laying with flour on the runs. We were asking for 1 1/2 Litre bottles but no longer. What we would like is just the milk bottle tops so  imagine please I am Valerie Singleton and you are 8 years old and collect some milk bottle tops please just like you did for Blue Peter. Actually as an aside  Stephen Fry   when asked to describe the difference between Valerie and the Queen by a foreigner, said  "One is a remote, godlike, autocratic woman endowed with powerful charismatic charm and the other is a constitutional monarch recently played on screen by Helen Mirren."

 The other notice for you ladies  is that  Jimmy Carroll has lost all control of his senses and decided to invite hash members and their families to join him and his own family on his Latchi boat trip  on July 7th so anyone interested please get your name down before Heather hears he has gone nuts and stops him filling the boat with us drunkards.

 Your erstwhile committee moved this run  from the actual Fathers Day on  Sunday to today after a few beers at the end of a joint masters meeting. For the life of us we now can’t remember why, so welcome to Fathers Day minus 2 days !

 Some facts for Father’s Day

There are 1.5 billion fathers in the world and the world record for having the most number of children officially recorded is 69 by the first wife of Feodor Vassilyve, of Moscow. His first wife gave birth to 16 pairs of twins, seven sets of triplets and four sets of quadruplets. Dinnertimes must have been hectic!

 In the UK 7 million Fathers Day cards will be sold this year compared to 13 million Mothers Day and the average spend on Fathers Day presents guys is 40% less than on Mothers.

 In Thailand, where lots of single Epi Hashers find solace each year playing with Thai girls oh sorry I read that wrong it should be playing golf with Thai girl caddies,  the King's Birthday also serves as National Father's Day. The celebration includes fireworks and acts of charity and honour "“ the most distinct being the donation of blood and the liberation of captive animals. Sound a bundle of fun doesn’t it.

 However in contrast in Germany, Father’s Day, or Vatertag, is a federal holiday celebrated on  Ascension Day. Men in Germany traditionally celebrate by pulling wagons loaded with beer and liquor into the woods and getting completely and utterly wasted. These days many can’t be bothered to drag a cart about and just hit the bars and beer halls on a mammoth all day  pub crawl. They are then welcomed home by their wives and put to bed.  Sounds like a typical Tuesday to me.

 A recent poll of the off spring of fathers in the USA found these are the top 5 things they reckon they will  never hear  their  father say :

 5. Well, how ‘bout that? I’m lost! Looks like we’ll have to stop and ask for directions.

 4.Can you turn up that music?

 3.  Here’s the remote

 2. Your Mother and I are going away for the weekend. You might want to consider throwing a party.

 And number one

I LOVE your tattoo.

 Today is June 16th and my true tale at the Crit today concerns an event that potentially changed the course of WW2 and because without women there would be no fathers  it is about a woman.

In 1918 in Oxford,  CT.  a couple of Russian migrants who had escaped the Bolshevik  revolution  gave birth to a daughter and named her Adeline. They had already much simplified their surname to Gray. Adeline went through the Oxford town education system and in 1929 went to High school there. She is remembered in the year book as a quiet, shy girl but with an adventurous streak. Her mother recalled that the family never kept an umbrella longer than a week as Adeline loved to jump off high walls and garage roofs holding the umbrella. In 1933 she and a friend went to the local movie house to see the new movie Flying Down to Rio, a movie now famous mainly for being the first film to feature the pairing of Fred Astaire with Ginger Rodgers though they were not the stars.

For those of you unfortunate enough not to have seen the film , and it’s well worth a view, the opening sequence has Fred Astaire dancing and singing on the roof of The Copacabana Palace hotel while Ginger Rodgers is overhead sitting  atop of the fuselage of a bi-plane directing a barnstorming aerial show featuring aircraft with wings loaded with attractive girls, wing walkers, and trapeze artists performing death defying feats beneath the aircraft  while parachutists free fall towards the sea. In an instance Adeline knew what she wanted to do with her life and in 1935 at 17 she graduated High School and bought a one way train ticket to Daytona Beach Florida.

She joined The Flying Aces Air Circus led by the legendary  Jessie Woods as a wing walker. Soon this shy girl from Oxford CT. was featured climbing from a speeding car on Daytona Beach going up a ladder and clambering into the front cockpit of a low flying bi-plane. Then she would  tumble out, seemingly to her death, as the plane looped the loop. However she had quickly slipped on a parachute in the cockpit and opened it to float back to the beach while the once shocked crowd now cheered her bravery . However in 1938 the Federal Aviation Act was passed in to law. It  imposed severe restrictions on low flying and required everyone to wear a parachute whilst outside an aircraft in the air . This effectively ended barnstorming for good and The Flying Aces folded.

 Adeline had made enough money to buy her own aircraft and moved to Lancaster PA. to open a parachute training school. Two years later she moved back to Oxford CT to get married and got a job at The Pioneer Parachute company in nearby Manchester whilst still teaching parachute jumping at weekends. It was the Autumn  of 1941 America was at peace but that changed on Dec. 7th when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbour. Now it is important to remember that all parachutes then were  made of silk and 80% of the worlds silk came from Japan and China. The remaining 20% came from countries in the Far East . Japan had already invaded China and quickly seized the countries of the Far East too.

 The Allies were now cut off from their supply of raw silk but they needed thousands and thousands of parachutes for the airman fighting in Europe and the Pacific and indeed by 1942  knew they  also needed them for the largest airborne landings ever undertaken, those  on D Day 1944.

As the supply of silk began to dwindle to nothing The Pioneer Parachute Company started to test new man made synthetics and landed on nylon as a possible parachute material.  Nylon has excellent wind resistance, good elasticity, is, unlike silk, mildew resistant, and is also lightweight and dries quickly. They tested it in wind tunnels, they threw dummies out of aircraft with the new material as a parachute but the U.S. military insisted on a human test as final proof. So on June 16th 1942 at Hartford Airfield CT.  the 24 year old Adeline Gray stepped out of the front cockpit of a bi-plane as the aircraft circled at 2,500 feet. She calmly walked out onto the wing, reached the end and jumped off with the new nylon parachute on her back. On the ground 50 representatives of the military watched through binoculars. The parachute opened and she floated gently down to the ground.

The Allies had a replacement for the silk parachute ensuring the supply to the Allied airman throughout the world and making possible  the largest ever airborne assault on the European mainland on D day  and the once shy local girl Adeline Gray was an instant an international heroine.

 

and Finally

 Last year on Fathers Day my son and daughter  sent me a cheque for £100 and said Dad  buy yourself something that makes your life easier.

So I went out and bought my wife Geraldine a present.

 On On The Hash

 

 

Tales from 2809

Todays run was 4.8 kms in length with 94 metres of accent and therefore decent.  we used 278 calories approx which translates into about a can and a half of beer.

The Hares Today on Run 2809

Dave Norris:  Runs:1092      Hares:176   Av:6

Simon Marsh:A guest Hare

Doug Clarke: Runs: 222      Hares:20      Av.11

Number of runners: 24

Returning Hashers:Mac MacManus and Aubrey O’Callahan

Guests:Simon Marsh

 Today’s Run

 Web Site Info :Thanks to the Club Aphrodite advertising budget this was an easy RV to find.

 R.V. Itself : Not often we have an RV with music,  a swimming pool ,showers and loos plus we are at the home of the beer store so I guess close to paradise for hashers.

Things for the good of the Hash?

Fathers Day Run this Friday at Radio Sonde, details on the website with the menu. Let Hash Cash know today your food choices or E Mail Jim Burke by tomorrow night. Could I ask those attending to put the tables they bring together with others to make the event a real social get together.

The Trail Blazing Flour Company no longer requires bottles as we have enough but does need milk bottle tops so we can give hares a supply of tops with holes in on each run. So have your better halves please start collecting milk bottle tops. I sound like John Nettles on Blue Peter don’t I.

July 4th U.S. Independence Day falls on a Tuesday this year so we will have a Stars and Stripes Run that day. Please wear something American, sport a U.S. flag or dress up as a cowboy or an Indian (Feather not spot) though these days there are more spots than feathers in the U.S. I would imagine.

Jimmy Carroll has kindly thrown open an invitation for any hashers to join him and his family and friends on a  Latchi boat trip on Friday July 7th . The official Latchi trip as part of our 50th year will be in September but if your like me and can’t get enough of these trips please let Jimmy know if you want to attend as places are limited.He also has details of approximate  pricing.

Last Weekend was a grand feast of sport. Louis Hamilton cruised home in The Canadian Grand Prix, The British and Irish Lions shook off their somnolence and beat the previously unbeaten Crusaders. This was the first time Crusaders had been kept tryless in two seasons, only the third time in 315 games they had registered so few points.

The England One Day side thrashed the old enemy Australia and sent them home early in the 50 over international cricket,

England beat the at full strength Pumas 38-34 whilst fielding 10 uncapped players the most for 61years including  Tim Curry the youngest England starter for 91years ,

Scotland beat Italy 34-13 in Singapore  ,

Ireland beat the USA 55-19, and at Hampden Park, apart from an exciting final 4 mins, the England soccer team showed us why they will not be causing too many teams sleepless nights  in Russia in 2018.

But the real excitement was in that great sporting arena called Westminster where the Vicar’s daughter single handedly managed to convince 40% of the voters that Jeremy Corbyn was a better bet than she was and Mrs MacFish had her rather pert bottom spanked by the Scottish electorate.

But if like me you find career politicians boring  here are some interesting QI facts to take your mind of politics

The average woman in Britain will spend £100,000 on make up in her lifetime

Swindon has the lowest demand for viagra of any town in the UK

Cows eat only grass but have 25,000 taste buds  twice the number we humans have.

A barnacle’s penis can be up to 20 times the length of its body.

There are no moles in Ireland ( Jimmy Carroll might not agree with that but I think this means the furry kind)

and finally of interest to hashers, sitting on the loo for 8 hours uses as many calories as jogging for one hour.

Rather than a true story today, I thought I’d reach for the other string to my bow and do a couple of naval sayings that have become part of everyday language.

Just like today, warships of the past needed discipline to be effective instruments of war . But let’s not get confused between Discipline which in Naval terms was a code of conduct for the efficient running of a ship and punishment which is the term for what was handed out to miscreants who had broken the rules. It is no surprise that a number of slang terms used ashore relate to punishments common in the age of sail.

In the Royal Navy the way a Captain could run his ship was outlined in the Articles of War and in Nelson’s time there were 36 articles loosely divided into four categories ;1) cowardice in the face of the enemy for which the punishment was always death,2) Offences against King and country such as espionage or dereliction  of duty again offenders faced death 3) for murder, assault or theft offenders normally faced death or severe punishment and 4) all other more minor offences such as blasphemy or say pissing out of the top gallants for which the punishment was lashes, and in case your interested it was 12 for pissing down onto the the main deck from up on high.

Thieving however which is one of the worst crimes on a ship was 350 lashes ensuring death before the end of the punishment.

And so to the phrase for today “over a barrel” . To have someone over a barrel is to have them at a disadvantage,  for instance from the press today Senior Tories were able to remove Mrs May’s closest advisors as they had her over a barrel after her disastrous election campaign.

Most people immediately think of a wooden barrel or cask but the phrase in the Royal Navy referred to a gun barrel . This method of punishment was also know as kissing  the gunner’s daughter, the daughter being the actual cannon barrel. This  punishment was normally reserved for midshipmen offenders and the device used was a cane or flat side of a sword not the cat of nine tails .

 The second is the word Posh: Something posh is elegant, stylish or luxurious; in Britain it also means somebody or something typical of the upper classes or according to Trevor that’s me !!

The best known and most widely believed story is that it comes from old-time ship travel from Britain to India on the packet boats run by the Peninsular and Oriental Steamship Company. As an aside when I joined The P&O I was clearly told their were three navies serving Britain, The P&O, The Grey Funnel Line meaning the Royal Navy and The Merchant navy in that order.

The word posh  supposedly stood for “Port Out, Starboard Home”. It is explained that somebody who had a cabin on the port side on the outward trip from Britain, and on the starboard side on the return trip from The Far East, had the benefit of shelter from the sun, on the hottest parts of the journey as the sun never comes above the Tropic of Cancer. Such cabins were reserved for the most wealthy passengers, we are told, and the P&O company stamped their tickets with the initials P.O.S.H.

The trouble is there’s absolutely no evidence for it, as no such ticket has ever been found and the P&O flatly denies any such term existed. It’s just a legend, though a very persistent one.

The most probable solution — though unprovable because slang is so rarely written down — is that it comes from London street slang for money. This may well derive from gypsies who called a halfpenny a  posh half, and then started to call  any small sum of money a posh, and then finally used it describe money in general. This is recorded from as early as 1830. Londoners started using the word and the word soon moved on to describe people with money or class or both  .So there you have it ,  a word everyone thinks has a nautical heritage but doesn’t.

 On On The Hash

 

 

 

Tales from 2808

 

In sport the British and Irish lions seemingly sleep walked past a very average New Zealand Ba Bas team, and indeed Warren Gatland confirmed over half the lions were on sleeping tablets to handle jet lag.

In cricket England overcame the might of Bangladesh to become according to the press firm favourites and in soccer Real Madrid thumped Juventus and in doing so showed how far Premiership teams have to go to ever raise that cup again.

but  50 years ago this week the Beatles released Sgt. Pepper and the magical Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds. So if sport and the fact that you might wake up on Friday with Jeremy Corbin as Prime Minister depress you,  just go back and think of yourself on a boat on a river and let the trees be tangerine and the skies marmalade and if people want to know what’s for dinner tell them we’ve got marshmallow pies.

Several  of you, I guess  because of my  years with British Airways, have asked what I think about the BA computer melt down over the Half term weekend and so I thought I would just share my views on the fiasco  .

From my early managerial career with BA I was involved in what is now known as disaster management and recovery planning together with “ crisis PR”. These  days business schools teach it , consultants  sell it and virtually every company role plays it on a regular basis. There is hardly a company board now that doesn’t have a risk committee  that demand of their company executives bulletproof evidence of both a plan and regular testing of the plan in as realistic circumstances as possible. BA was very much in the vanguard of this for unfortunately an airline disaster usually means a plane has come down with resultant injuries and deaths .

In 1981 I became Manager Portugal  and was dispatched to London as one of the first employees to attend a Crisis PR course. The man running it was a up and coming BBC interviewer and absolute pussycat one Jeremy Paxman. On day one, in the morning, I did my first interview with him. He seemed sweetness and light  and asked me what I’d like to talk about and I suggested the upcoming visit of Concorde to Lisbon. Excellent he said “I’ve flown on it, what a super aircraft, I’m a huge fan”. I relaxed and remember thinking this is a doddle I wonder what's for lunch. Just before we went to live recording he asked me if I wanted to ask him any questions about the interview before we started. No I’m really looking forward to it, I said. Okay and he turned to the camera introduced me as  BA’s man in Portugal, turned back  and said Mr Jones why on earth are you bringing an aircraft that is the noisiest, most fuel inefficient , worst   polluting, waste of British tax payers money  to one of the most  beautiful and unspoilt  capitals in Europe .

For many years I kept the video of me sitting there with a stupid expression on my face with my mouth opening and closing but nothing coming out.

His course taught me five key things,

always ask the purpose of the interview, never lie, never guess, but most importantly in a crisis be visible and keep the press updated . If you let them run the story Paxman insisted your company will suffer as they will assume you have something to hid. Certainly in my days at BA, the incident room at LHR was kept at full readiness.

 As Managing Director of Brymon Airways once a year I, with my Chief Engineer, Chief Pilot and Head of Cabin Crew turn up there for a two day simulated exercise. Once settled I would receive a call saying something like a Brymon Airways Dash 8 has crashed 6 miles short of the runway at Bristol on a flight from Paris, initial reports are of no survivors . Eye witnesses report an explosion in an engine before the plane crashed.  And so the simulated exercise would start . In the room next door actual press and TV people were gathering as they used these simulations  as a training exercise for their people in interview techniques.  In another room were 20 or 30 of our staff with scripts playing bereaved relatives. Ten minutes later I was making my first statement to the press after talking to the  relatives. When I returned to the incident room a note would  informed me there had been a problem with number 2 engine that had delayed departure from Paris and Reuters were leading with that story. For 2 days we handled all kinds of issues concerning this supposed crash  handed to us every few minutes, The crew were fatigued, the engine had a history of problems, the hold showed signs of a bomb explosion, the first officer only had 28 hours experience on that aircraft . On and on it would go.  A week afterwards I went back for an all day de-brief as to how I had managed the crisis and ways I could improve.

So what went wrong this time ? Why wasn’t the Managing Director of BA visible over the weekend, why weren’t senior managers in Terminal 5 updating passengers, listening to their complaints and why were the front line staff left as much in the dark as the passengers they were trying to deal with . In Its heyday coincidentally when I worked there faced with that kind of problem, budgets went out of the window.Spend and keep spending we were taught,

Get as many managers in the terminal to support the boys and girls taking the brunt of  it.

Quickly recognise ring leaders  amongst the passengers and get them on  any airline going to their destination at any price. Once they were gone the remaining passengers were calmer and easier to talk to.

Keep visible and keep an information flow going.

But that didn’t happen .

The best explanation  I can offer on the management issue is a lack of experience. When Jeremy Paxman said to me always remember you know more about your business than the interviewer he was reflecting that the BA mangers he was training had at least 8 years airline experience. The guy today running BA’s second most import market North America was recruited from Shredded Wheat, spent a month at head office learning the business and then took up his position. He intends, he told a friend of mine still close to BA, to do the job for a couple of years and then move on to another company. Very few managers at BA have been there longer than 3 years .

As an aside did you know it costs more to make the cardboard packet they come in than the actual shredded wheat  inside ? The guy running North America does, but does he know never to trust a ground engineer when he tells you he’ll have the problem with the engine licked in an hour or so .

I know that “or so” means you start looking for hotel rooms for the passengers as the plane ain’t going nowhere.

We have just witnessed a world-scale management cock up and Senor Cruz the head of BA needs to realise it. Instead he says “ I will make sure it doesn't happen again”  but why should customers believe  him? His disaster plan if he had one didn’t work from the start and therefore it is beholden for him and several of his key executives to fall on their swords or be fired.

So why did the supremo of  IAG Willie Walsh do nothing ? Perhaps  the rumours that he intends to join Iberia, British Airways and Aer Lingus together as a single airline under a new name thereby doing away with  British Airways and it’s flag carrier status are indeed true as otherwise surely he would be doing more to rescue this once proud  brand .

To Fly To Serve is now just a joke of a motto .

And Finally

Talking of incidents. Before I met and married Geraldine I was dating another stewardess . She was on a Trident aircraft on approach to Paris when the flight crew reported smoke in the cockpit. They declared an emergency and Paris Air traffic diverted other aircraft to allow the Trident to land immediately. Now Tridents didn’t have self inflating slides . Instead the cabin crew member selected a couple of burly looking guys and asked them to help. Their role once the aircraft stopped  and the door was opened was to shimmy down two ropes extend the slide and hold either side of it  to allow passengers to slide down. She selected two French rugby types who both said mais oui.

The aircraft landed and stopped on the runway. She threw open the door and the big Frenchmen went down the ropes. They looked back just to wave and ran as fast as they could away from the aircraft.

On On The Hash

 

 


Tales from 2807

Firstly our charity Prostate Research now has an healthy opening balance of €130 thanks to the donations yesterday so we are up and running on our goal to raise €500 in the next year.

The Epi Hash Trail Blazing Flour Company is in full production. Jim Burke is the temporary Chief Executive Officer and Chairman, Mark Foley is Snr Vice President Procurement and I am the store man as it is in my garage. We are at present producing a rather becoming lilac that goes with Jim’s new running vest though once on the ground  it might look  blue to you. To date we have had only one problem with our production line.  That was  when we used, what turned out to be, Jim’s wife Tina’s best measurer to measure out the paint powder. She seemed less that impressed to have a beautiful lilac measurer slipped back into the cupboard. We estimate 9 bottles will be required to lay an hour trail so The Trail Blazing Flour Company will provide said 18 full  milk bottles  every two weeks for the upcoming hashes. May I again just make it clear the trails we lay use the markings that we have always used other than the circle for a check with, if the hares require, an H for holding and an arrow for a change of direction in the trail. Also, please keep bringing your empty one and a half litre milk bottles to the hash each week .

The  Trail Blazing Flour Company opens up many possibilities with our ability to produce different coloured flour, not least  to mark a walking trail. I agree wholly with Ray’s comments yesterday at the On Out that walkers will only get out of the walk what they are willing to put in it and so I have asked several walkers to get me ideas on how a walking trail could be achieved and what extra effort is required by the walking hare and the two running hares on the recce and the laying days.

Once I have this I will put it to the hash as a whole. Personally, I think if people come on the hash they should expect to do a hash in the true sense of the word but let’s see how this pans out and most importantly if there is any enthusiasm for it from the walkers, who, it should be recognised now outnumber the runners on most Tuesdays.

For Your Diaries:

The Fathers Day Open Run is on Friday June 16th . Again an afternoon run at 1600 hrs  this time  around Paramali Beach. The 3 hares are Harriets to give fathers a day off. They will also lay an Open Day   walker’s trail on this day as we want  both groups to have fun on the run as the harriets will be leaving surprises for the  hashers at most checks. Hashers finding the on on and the surprise will be expected to be sporting them  on the run in to the R.V. Photos will be taken. Keo beer ,7 Up and another superb vintage trodden that morning by Nogsie and decanted into any empty bottles of wine he can find at the Erimi tip  will  be provided at the RV but BYO is very welcome too. The meal will be at Yianni’s Tavern and will feature fillet steak. Jim Burke is in intense Brexit style negotiation with Yianni (who has put his prices up to reflect not an increase in meat but his popularity) and we will have a price for you by Thursday or indeed a change of venue if Jim is faced with Yianni’s Hard Brexit ( the mind boggles) with the home of the hash young  George at Fama G eagerly waiting in the wings .

And so to the true story today,

We all know the characteristics of a German, he obeys rules, respects authority, follows orders to the letter  and most heinous of all puts towels on pool bed chairs late at night to prevent upstanding  Brits from enjoying the sun the next day.

Now I’m going to ask for some audience participation during this story guys so I want you to imagine yourselves archetypal   German Prussians , which will definitely not be too difficult for some of you I suspect.

Now in your best German accents repeat this phrase “ Ich Werde mein Kapitain” I will captain, so  again “ Ich Werde Mein Kapitain”

Now when you say it click your heels together “ Ich Werde Mein Kapitain “  

Hey, zie sprechen vie Deutsche zehr Gut Herren

Okay back to the story

One man was to manipulate those German characteristics to his own advantage with amazing results. His name was Wilhelm Voigt who lived in Kopenick in the State of Prussia. Voigt lived in a real life Catch22 situation ;  without military service which he skipped he couldn't obtain an  I.D. card and without I.D.  he couldn't work . He had spent most of his life being jailed for trying to steal I.D. cards . However during his last 8 year sentence the governor, an avid amateur  military strategist,  had taught his prisoners to drill and march so they could  re-enact  battles that Prussia had won. Voigt was a keen and attentive pupil.

On his release in 1906 he went to the local secondhand store  to buy some  clothes. But there he found a Captains uniform of the Imperial German Army which in one of those quirks of life had been left there by servants of the new mayor  of the town who had a few months before retired from the army. More of him later. Voigt bought the old uniform and leaving his very tatty clothes at the shop wore it home. He realised that he was immediately respected. People stepped off pavements to allow him to pass, soldiers smartly saluted him, he was waived  to the front of queues and civilians immediately stood up on the bus to let him sit. So with this in mind,  in his rented room that night, he concocted a plan to solve his lifelong  problem. He would commandeer some troops go to The Town Hall  take the mayor hostage and make him give him  a passport so he could go to Luxembourg where he had relatives.

The next morning back in his uniform he found a troop of 10 men being marched to barracks by a sergeant . He ordered them to halt, strutted up to them and told the quaking sergeant he was taking the men on a special mission and that he was to return to barracks .The sergeant replied ( here we go guys) ” Ich werde mein Kapitain” Next he went to the Post Office and ordered the telephonist to cancel all in coming and out going calls to the Town Hall. “ Ich werde mein Kapitain” On to the police station where he ordered the police chief to withdraw all police patrolling  within a mile around the Town Hall “ Ich werde mein Kapitain” Then to the Town Hall where he ordered 6 of his men to guard each exit no one in or out. “ ich werde mein Kapitain “. Finally he marched into the Mayor’s office and demanded he give him a passport  “ Ich werde Mein Kapitain”, except added the mayor the passports aren’t issued here anymore they are issued in Berlin ! Unfazed Voigt ordered him to open the Treasury “ Ich werde mein Kapitain” and Voigt helped himself to 4,000 Deutsch Marks equivalent to £30,000 today. Alone he marched out of the Town Hall after ordering his men to hold the it for an hour went to the railway station and disappeared. 10 days later he was arrested at another railway station but by then he was a sensation. Even most Germans and certainly the rest of Europe laughed at the idea that a fake in a uniform could run circles around the Prussians. Money was raised for the finest defence lawyer and Voigt received just a 2 years sentence

In fact  Kaiser Wilhelm ll who was as we know one kraut short of a Sauer thought that Voigt had illustrated the power and might of Prussian militarism rather than, as all others did, make it look a laughing stock  released him. This was of course the same screw loose Kaiser that led Germany into the slaughter that was the First World War. Voigt came out of prison a media star, he sold his life story to several newspapers, appeared on stage to sell out crowds in his Captain’s uniform and was hired by Barnham and Bailly circus to tour Europe, the UK and the USA. He made lots of money got his passport and retired in 1913 to Luxembourg. A year later Germany invaded and in a final twist he was detained for a week by German troops who finding his uniform seemingly hidden in the loft thought he was a real German officer who had deserted.

And Finally

 a phrase that has moved easily from The Royal Navy to everyday usage .

To chew the fat. This means to gossip or to have a friendly chit chat or a bit of a grumble. Just like the R.V. of this hash really.

On Royal Naval  warships hands were allowed to chose who they messed with ( six men being the usual number). While seated and chewing through their perhaps rather fatty food they would share gossip , news or more often than not just grumble. Sailors are notoriously fussy about their food the longer the voyage goes on and in the days of sail with no refrigeration the salt beef required more and more chewing to make it swallowable as did the grumbling and the gossip.

So To Chew the fat

and on that bombshell

On On The Hash

 

 

 

TALES FROM 2806

Welcome to the first Sundowners run.

That music by Zac Brown is the new Sundowners Club Anthem and the chorus says everything I feel about sundowners:

Got my toes in the water

Ass in the sand

Not a worry in the world

Cold beer in my hand

Life was good today

Life was good today

 

 

The Epi Hash Sundowners Club  is based entirely on feedback from hashers and more importantly their better halves. The runs will be on days that do not clash with the other two Hashes so people that attend those needn’t miss these open days. They are later in the day to enjoy the cooler temperatures rather than running and walking at mid-day, they are BYO to reflect the fact that ,wash my mouth out, not everyone on the hash open days wants to drink Keo or wine and they are catered because many wives told me they were fed up with preparing vast quantities of food and lugging it to the beach, finding that everyone had bought too much food and so lugging most of it back and throwing it away. You guys don’t take your own food on a Tuesday they said so why can’t we enjoy the meals you do. Let the bastard spend some money on me for a change. It says here pause for cheers from the girls to die down !! So I do hope you enjoy this new format.

There are three definitions of the word Sundowner .

The first is from New Zealand and is used to describe a lazy sheepdog who lets the other dogs do the work waiting only for sundown when he can get some food and shut eye.

The second is Australian and indeed we all have had experience of a Sundowner ourselves I would think. In OZ a Sundowner is someone who delays a visit to your house until sundown in the hope of getting a drink from you or better still an invitation to stay for supper. You know the type that turns up at the door a 6 p.m. clutching the two tea bags you gave him a week ago. Just thought I’d return this he says after he is over the threshold and you hear yourself saying would you like a drink ? That’s kind he says and before you know it he is settled in your own  comfortable armchair swilling down your booze.  Oh yes we have all known  a Sundowner .

The final definition is South African and is the one we are celebrating today a drink as the sun goes down often taken in pleasant and pleasing company, like today.

Sundowner  is also a great name for a boat and one of the most famous boats bearing the name Sundowner  was owned by Charles Lightoller . Those of you that have seen the film Titanic and  who hasn’t ? will recognise the name for he was the Second Officer on board the Titanic on that fateful night of April 14th 1912. Indeed Lightoller was the hero that night taking charge of getting lifeboats away, shouting women and children only, whilst ordering men out of lifeboats at the point of his unloaded pistol. He was one of the last to leap from Titanic as she started her final dive, helped 20 others clamber on board an up turned lifeboat, had them paddle to one of the few lifeboats that returned to search for survivors and  then kept his group of 79 survivors singing all night in the lifeboat to keep them awake on that freezing cold night. He was the last survivor to board the Carpathia . Quite a guy. Charles Lightoller purchase a 58 foot motor yacht which he christened Sundowner in 1929 and he and his family used her for family holidays sailing around Britain and the continent.

 During the First World war Lightoller had served with distinction in The Royal Navy, winning a DSO for shooting down a Zepplin airship and a bar to that medal for sinking a German U boat.

In the early summer of 1939 t  Royal Naval Intelligence asked him to take Sundowner to survey the coast of Germany which he and his wife did under the guise of an elderly couple on holiday on their yacht. They photographed the major German harbour and coastal defences and gave their so called holiday snaps to a grateful Royal Navy. Then on this very day in 1940 the Admiralty asked Lightoller to take Sundowner to Ramsgate with about 120 other little boats. They were to help in the evacuation of The British Expeditionary Force from Dunkirk .

The 66 year old Lightoller, accompanied by his eldest son Roger and an 18 year old Sea-Scout , took the Sundowner and sailed for Dunkirk and the trapped British Expeditionary Force. Although the Sundowner had never carried more than 21 persons before, they succeeded in plucking 130 men from the beach at Dunkirk  and brought the crowded motor yacht home safely despite being attacked twice by enemy aircraft.  There was much chat on board the little boat once the Army guys realised the Skipper had been on the Titanic with several joking they should get off and take their chances back on the beach. Had they known that Lightoller had also had to take to the lifeboats when his ship HMS Oceanic sank in 1914 and again in 1918  when his command HMS Falcon was sunk at the very hour on the very same day  that Titanic had sunk 6 years earlier, they might not have sailed with such a  Jonah !! Lightoller set sail  to return to Dunkirk but the Navy  stopped him as the town was about to fall into German hands.

He was recruited back into The Royal Navy with Sundowner as part of The Small Ships Squadron looking after coastal defence was mentioned in dispatches for rescuing a downed RAF crew in the North Sea and retired finally from the Navy in 1945 at the ripe old age of 71. He died peacefully in his bed in 1952. What an amazing  life. If your ever in Ramsgate, Sundowner is now in the Harbour there as part of  the Little Ships Museum . With 50 other members of the Association of Dunkirk little ships Sundowner is returning to Dunkirk in 2020 for the 80th anniversary of Operation Dynamo with the hobnail boot marks of the troops she saved still  on her decking.

And Finally a few fun cabin crew announcements from across the pond in the USA

A Southwest Airlines plane has arrived at the gate in Miami

“Folks it has been great having you flying with us today. But just like my Dad said to me the day I turned 18: it’s now time to grab your bags and get out.”

On another Southwest flight

“Ladies and gentlemen  have begun our descent. If Chicago is not your planned destination for today, it soon will be.”

and just after the doors closed on departure

“We are pleased to have some of the best flight attendants in the industry working for Southwest. Unfortunately none of them are on this flight.”

 

On On the Hash

 

THE TALE FROM 2805

Today’s Run

Web Site Info :The directions were “ Run this week will be at the Pheasant Farm. Signs from the B6, follow track over Highway and then hang a left”. Please gentlemen ask yourself if a visiting hasher from abroad or a possible wannabe hasher could ever have found the RV. Indeed I asked our newest member last night and he quite understandably hadn’t an idea where the hell he was supposed to go.  

RV Itself :Windswept,Screw Grass but good views and can see Motorway.

Things for the good of the Hash?

I have  a few :

Tom McSherry phoned me to say he is on the mend. For those of you that don’t know he has had two falls whilst running. One caused by a truck almost running him down and the second after stepping on a stone. He received treatment at the hospital and the Doctor ,who couldn’t believe anyone of 77 was still running has put him off all but light exercise for at least 6 weeks. Tom hopes to be back after that .

Big Weekend for sport fans. Congrats to Scotland for winning the London 7’s beating a good England team 12-7. England however were runners up to South Africa in the overall 10 series final standing . Liverpool have Champions League football next season and George the ex On Pres asked me to mention Newcastle are back in the Premiership and Trevor asked me not to mention that Sunderland have replaced them in the Championship. Finally congrats to Mumbai Indians who won the Indian Premier League Cricket final by one run in an amazingly exciting game .

Trail blazing. We can source the flour and indeed Tony Flower reckons he can get it on the cheap and it comes with weevils as an added bonus. I gave coloured powder to the hares for this weeks run but unfortunately it wasn’t used. Still we have, can get that and will trial colours on Monday. We have plenty of milk bottles and even a crate . We now need a Hash Mash. It’s probably 45 mins work once every two weeks. Who will help the hash ? ( Says here pause while people look embarrassed stare at their feet shuffle a bit and focus on what's in their mugs. ) Are we happy for the hares to do it each week then until I find someone ? If so.. Jim quick lesson in making the stuff.

The On Pres charity for this year is for Prostate Research. I chose it because we are a gentlemen only hash and prostate cancer is a gentlemen only problem so it makes sense. I plan a series of collections and hope that over this 50th year we hashers will be able to make a fair donation to this important research. If like me you are worried about charities these days with their political agenda and huge admin costs , this one got a thumbs up from David Craig in his informative book The Great Charity Scandal.

The Sundowners Run which is a free run will be the first opportunity for attendees to contribute something for the charity. and talking of the Sundowner Run if you have tropical shirts,  straw hats etc please wear then after the run and ladies might want to wear tropical island rig too.

Yet more important information to hashers , I am indebted to THE DEBRETT’S & TATLER SCHOOL OF ETIQUETTE for the following rules on Urinal Usage

1. Thou shalt not use thy smartphone  There’s a growing trend, sadly, for slashing young men to hold their iPhallus in one hand and their iPhone in the other. Such posturing or “multi-tasking” shows a lack of class. It’s also probably unhygienic.

2. Thou shalt adhere to positioning protocol.  If you’re first to a row of urinals, choose the one furthest from the door. If you’re second in, choose the opposite end. If you’re third in, choose the middle. Try to leave at least one urinal’s gap between users.

3. Thou shalt not provide musical accompaniment.  That means no singing, humming or whistling, which is the behaviour of nervous weirdos or David Brent types. Attention-seeking when one’s penis is out of one's trousers is unacceptable. Unless… well, you know.

4. Thou shalt not maketh smalltalk.  A nod or an “alright?” is just about OK . Extended chit-chat is not OK especially if it is to make fun of the On Pres’s crit whilst  at the Chop. Or worse the On Pres’s ….well let’s not go there.

5. Thou shalt not go hands-free.  Two-handed is industry standard. One-handed will be tolerated. No-handed is the province of schoolboys pretending they’re an elephant or putting their hands on their hips and fantasising that they’re some sort of wazzing superhero. Fine and fun at home, definitely not in public.

5 More Next Week.

"There seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today," said Admiral Beatty as he watched three of his battlecruisers blow up one by one at the Battle of Jutland. The words were classic British understatement, but 3,000 dead sailors were ample evidence that something was indeed wrong with the vessels that were neither battleships nor cruisers.

But for the cause we have to go back,  to Nelson . Now Nelson was a superb Commander but the real advantage he had over the French and Spanish fleets was the speed with which British gunners could fire their  cannon, in many cases three cannon shots to just one in reply from the enemy.  From 1805 onwards the Royal Navy was dominated by a mindset that emphasised rapidity of fire. Vice Admiral Stanley Colville, at the Battle of Jutland instructed that, "rapid and sustained fire...is essential. The danger of the charges being ignited is to be disregarded.” To manage rapid fire the door on Battlecruisers between the turret and the magazine was kept open and propellant charges were also stacked in the the turret rather than have firing delayed while  they were  carried in after each salvo . However to achieve the 32 knots also required by a Battlecruiser, the armour on the turrets was light.” Speed is armour” said First Sea Lord Jackie Fisher  as justification. This rapidity of fire continued as a naval tactic into the Second World War.

On May 22nd 1941  the mighty German Battleship  Bismarck and the heavy cruiser Prince Eugene slipped their moorings and sailed north intending to pass through the Denmark Strait and out into the Atlantic to attack convoys bringing vital supplies to Britain. In their way, patrolling the Strait, were the cruisers Norfolk and Suffolk the battleship Prince of Wales and the Battlecruiser H.M.S. Hood . At 42000 tonne HMS Hood was a very large capital ship, the longest built for the Navy and only surpassed  by the Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier in 2014.  For close to two decades, the “Mighty Hood” was the world’s largest, fastest, and most famous warship. It was known as the Pride of the British navy. However by 1939 she was long in the tooth and due a massive refit to include much more armour . However this had been postponed with the onset of war.  At 5.55 a.m. on May 24th The British ships were 14 miles from  the German ships when Bismarck opened fire. Salvos of massive 15 inch shells, which weighed 2,000 lbs travelled at 2,500 feet per second and had a range of 19 miles, were exchanged and the sound of shellfire was easy heard by the residents  in Reykjarvik ,258 kms away . They thought it was a huge thunderstorm .  After just 3 minutes of battle at 05.58  a shell from the 5th salvo fired  from Bismarck penetrated the aft turret on the Hood and just like the ones at Jutland the battlecruiser blew herself apart sinking in less than 4 minutes. 1,415 men perished and just three survived. The Board of Enquiry found that the probable cause was a shell entering the magazine , probably aided by  an open door  from the turret which was common practise in combat.  This was confirmed years later when the wreck of the Hood was discovered in 2001.  Three days later on May 27th Bismarck was sunk  by the battleship King George V after being crippled by aircraft flown from the aircraft carrier Ark Royal the night before. 2,000 German seaman lost their lives.

 As an aside when I joined The Nautical College Pangbourne at 13, my seat in the chapel on Sundays was for a time alongside a plaque put there by the family of Nigel Norrington Adams R.N.R. who was at Pangbourne 1936-40 and as an Acting Midshipman went down with the Hood aged 18 years 1 month.

Bismarck’s war had lasted just 5 days and The Tirpitz only fired a few salvoes in anger   in her entire war before being sunk by 617 and 9 Squadron Lancasters in November 1944.  It is interesting to ponder that had Hitler backed Admiral Dontiz instead of Admiral Raeder and for the same cost built 100 more submarines instead of the Tirpitz and Bismarck the course of the war could have been very different. It is more than likely that by 1941 the extra U boats would have bought Britain to it’s knees and possibly suing for peace.

and finally

Most quotes I do on amusing cabin crew announcements come from the USA so I’m delighted to report that humour is alive and well  in the UK and I actually heard this on my British Airways flight last week.

The ground power unit had failed at Gatwick so the aircraft was getting very hot as  we all waited on board  to taxi out. The captain came on and apologised for the heat and advised that once he had clearance to start the engines the internal APU would kick in and start to cool the cabin. After a few more minutes  the engines started and a stewardess asked passengers to check that their air vents were open to allow the cool air to flow. As passengers started to raise their arms to check if theirs was open, a crew member at the back said on the intercom  “will all passengers that had it last night kindly raise their hands “.

On On the Hash.

 

THE TALE FROM 2804

 

I was sorry to miss Peter’s Crit last week on Buggery having spent my youth at an all boys  Public  School , that’s where us posh people go to school Trevor !!, 

So welcome to The Dambusters Run

The Hares Today on Run 2804

Barney Bruce:  Runs: 569      Hares:70      Av:8

Jim Adair: Runs:361       Hares:33      Av: 11

Laurie Mitchell: Runs: 723       Hares: 86     Av.8

Number of runners: 21

Returning Hashers: Ray Bolger, Stu Law

Guests:Alan Harrison, Paul Maynard Jeff Bryant

A few RAF stories for the Dambusters Run :

How can you tell if someone is ex RAF.  Don’t worry it’s the first thing he’ll tell you.

The Queen is inspecting 3 armed forces personnel, 1 from each of her fighting forces.She asks each one what they would do if they woke up and found a deadly camel spider in their tent on operations?The squaddie says, “I’d reach over, grab my bayonet and stab it to death!” The matelot says, “I’d reach over, grab my boot and batter it to death !” The airman says, “I’d reach over, pick up my phone, call reception and ask……..Who the hell has put a tent up in my hotel suite?”

A new Club for ex Servicemen has opened in Central London. It is owned by an ex Royal Naval Petty Officer who won £46 million on the lottery and is using the money to subsidise the drinks. An retired Army guy walks in and orders a pint of bitter.  “That will be £1 please” says the owner. “ Wow that’s fantastically cheap for the middle of London”  says the Army guy. “Tell me who are those two fellows down at the other end of the bar who are not drinking ?” “ Oh “ says the owner “ that’s Barney Bruce and Jim Adair,  retired RAF types . They’re waiting for Happy Hour .”

Things for the good of the Hash?

On Monday May 29th we have the first Sundowners Run. Meet at 1530 hrs and run at 1600 hrs BYO booze and nibbles then a meal at Melanda Beach Bar three fishy choices for the knockdown price of €12. We have 41  coming but if any of you are still in the undecided club please come along and have a fun evening under the stars then run off the hangover the next day like true hashers.

I  will this week source for next week's run and find the paint dye to get the colour that we the Epi hash will . Could I ask that next week you all bring empty milk bottles to the Hash so we can get a good supply . Until  we appoint a Hash Mash ( mashing the flour and the water with the paint dye ) the hares will source flour and mix it with the paint dyed water. It is not an onerous task the run today used just 6 bottles of liquid.

My thanks to Simon Carroll for this next news snippet which continues to show how right we are on The Epi Hash to enjoy a few beers .

Running and walking can cause muscle and joint pain especially in, shall we say, slightly older participants and the normal cure is to take a couple of pain relief tablets. How wrong we were !  A study, led by Dr. Trevor Thompson from the University of Greenwich, and published in The Medical  Journal of Pain, not, I hasten to add, to be confused with the magazine Masochists Anonymous which I know is essential reading for some members of the Hash. You know who you are ! Anyway Dr. Thompson has found that raising your blood alcohol content to the legal limit of .08%, which relates to about 4/5 beers , elevates your pain threshold significantly. This was according to a meta-analysis of 18 different studies looking at the effect of different dosages of beer on subject pain response.Based on the research, Thompson says beer  was actually shown to be more powerful than paracetamol, or any other pain reliever . So Hashers charge your glasses again if you have any nagging twinges or aches or indeed just charge them to ward off future pain.

 

Next Week’s run : Pheasant Farm

 

Hares:  Nick Smith , David Marks and Roger Smith

Chop: Hani

The story of The Dambusters is very well known and most of us will have seen the film of the same name made in 1953 . So many of the royal family wanted to attend the opening that it is still the only film ever to have had 2 royal premiers on successive nights. Amazingly the bouncing bomb was still on the top secret list in 1953.   The bombs shown in what was the original footage of the bomb test drops by a Wellington bomber during the film were altered from cylindrical to round by the Air Ministry lest the Russians copied them . And Barnes Wallis who invented the bouncing bomb also designed the Wellington bomber.

Micky Martin who later was posted to Cyprus for 3 years running the RAF Near East operation and in fact only missed running on the first ever Epi hash run by a month    flew on the raid. He had renamed his P for Peter call sign on his Lancaster to P for Popsie.  RAF slang for a pretty girl .

Other RAF slang expressions entered normal conversation at the end of the war. Gone for a Burton for example which means to go missing or to die. The expression possibly came from the Royal Navy and transferred over when the Royal Naval Air Service merged with the Army Royal Flying Corp to become the RAF in 1918. A Burton related to a Spanish Burton a very complicated system of block and tackle for lifting heavy objects in  17th Century ships . If a deckhand was missing he was probably still trying to figure out how to put it together. More likely it related to a series of advertisements run by the Burton brewing company just before the war showing groups of people with one person clearly missing. In the next picture  he was seen drinking a bottle of Burton beer in a pub with the tag Gone for a Burton. It is not, as many believe, related to Burton the tailors who made the demob suits for ex servicemen at the end of the war. The suits consisted of a jacket, trousers and a waistcoat. Burtons at the time were known by its full name of Montague Burton and the demob suit became know as The Full Monty which also entered everyday usage.

inally it is worth remembering the extraordinary losses experienced by Bomber Command of the 125,000 aircrew that went to war 45% were killed a death rate that surpassed any of the other services in either world war. The average age of the aircrew was just 20 years old.

 

On On the Hash

 

 

THE TALE FROM 2803

Margaret Clap better known as Mother or Maggie Clap, ran a coffee house from 1724 to 1726 in HolbornMiddlesex, a short distance from the City of London. Notable for running a molly house, an inn or tavern primarily frequented by homosexual men, she was also heavily involved in the ensuing legal battles after her premises were raided and shut down. While not much is known about her life, she was an important part of the gay subculture of early 18th-century England. At the time sodomy in England was a crime under the Buggery Act 1533, punishable by a fine, imprisonment, or the death penalty. Despite this, particularly in larger cities, private homosexual activity took place. To service these actions there existed locations where men from all classes could find partners or just socialize, called molly houses, "molly" being slang for a gay man at the time. One of the most famous of these was Maggies molly house.

Maggie Clap ran a coffee house that served as a molly house for the underground homosexual community. Her house was popular during the two years of its existence, being well known within the homosexual community. She cared for her customers, and catered especially to the homosexual men who frequented it. She was known to have provided "beds in every room of the house" and commonly had "thirty or forty of such Kind of Chaps every Night, but more especially on Sunday Nights." Maggie was present during the vast majority of the molly house's operational hours, apparently only leaving to run across the street to a local tavern, to buy drinks for her customers. Because Clap had to leave the premises to retrieve alcohol to serve to her customers, it is likely that the molly house was hosted in her own private residence. Unlike other molly houses, it was not a brothel. Clap's intentions may have been based more upon pleasure than profit, judging by her goodwill towards her customers. For example, one man lodged at her house for two years and she later provided false testimony to get a man acquitted of sodomy charges. Her actions during the charges later laid against her and many of the homosexual community showed her loyalty to her customers.

In February 1726, Margaret Clap's molly house was raided by the police; around 40 of its occupants were arrested. Primarily targeted by the Society for the Reformation of Manners, the house had been under surveillance for two years. The surveillance seems to have been instigated by a collection of vengeful mollies-turned-informants. A man named Mark Patridge was outed by his lover and was then turned as an informant for the police. He led policemen into molly houses, introducing each of them as his "husband" so that they could investigate more thoroughly. Patridge was not tried in court for sodomy. Another notable informant was Thomas Newton, who frequently used entrapment to allow constables to arrest men in the act of instigating sodomy. Of the 40 arrested 35 received lengthy prison terms and 5 were hanged at Tyburn.

 

 

 THE TALE FROM 2802

Anything for the good of the Hash?

Firstly Run 2804 on May 16th . On May16th 1943 19 Lancasters took off from RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire to bomb three dams in the Ruhr Valley . The crews of those aircraft became known as The Dambusters. So the May 16th run is now the Dambusters Run. We shall have some fun on the run with this theme and again in the evening  at the Chop.

On May 29th we have the first Sundowners Run. My idea is a simple one, hashers and their friends and family meet up, take some exercise , have a few cocktails, watch the sun start to set and then head off for a meal or have it catered at the beach. Details are on the website and we need numbers saspo as Makis will open his restaurant for us and serve a fish supper if there are sufficient people . I will send an e mail out tomorrow and please reply to it.

When I became On Pres I asked what we gave the outgoing On Pres. who has served the Hash for a year or more. Nothing I was told . Well I have changed that and am delighted on behalf of you all to give this small token of our thanks to George for his 14 months as On Pres . He stepped up when no one else would take the job and has kept us royally entertained with his jokes each week as well as running the Hash. George

Now here is something of essential interest to Epi hashers.

Dr. Ron Maughan is visiting Professor at St. Andrews Uni and has completed a paper on the most  effective rehydration after exercise. For years it has been known that exercise in the heat  means the runner or walker will lose 2-3litres of body fluid an hour. To replace it is essential and the recommendation has always been water  . Ron’s research, however, concludes that this merely stimulates urine production and so little fluid is replaced. He instead tested drinks that contained sodium and potassium to slow urine loss and increase rehydration. His final recommendation gentlemen of the hash is, after 45-60 mins of exercise, to drink  at least 2 pints of lager style beer with at least 2 large handfuls of well salted nuts. I have E mailed Dr. Ron and invited him to be the honorary Doctor of Rehydration to the Epi hash. Would Peter Hogg also kindly tell the lady on The Happy Valley Hash who complained about Epi Hashers drinking too much beer on their hash that we got it right. 

As the rest of this Crit has taken sometime and I am determined to keep them short so I and of course you can enjoy more beer time. So I am skipping my true story this week as it was a long one, not tall  long. Instead I will use the second string to my bow and talk about words and expressions that have come from the Navy and now are in everyday usage.

 

The word today is hijack , to have someone else take control by use of force. With my airline hat on whilst aircraft hijacking started in 1960, the 1976 hijacking of an Air France jet to Entebbe set the tone for 2 decades of hijacks that culminated in the events of 9/11 . Where does the word come from ? Well, sailors on shore leave in American ports would be looking for ladies of the night after months at sea.  Said ladies would hail them from their upstairs window leaning out to show their wares and calling out the nickname for sailors Hi Jack, Jack Tar. Up the stairs he would eagerly go and on the darkened landing would be whacked on the head, relieved of his pay and  sold  on to another ship in need of extra hands.  He had been well and truly  hijacked .        

And Finally

Next week we will test laying a trail with dyed flour under the tutelage of Jim Burke who will provide a brief demonstration at the start of the run. But don’t worry everything stays the same guys, no fish hooks, no Geordie squares none of the strange signs from the other hashes just our style trail with flour instead of trash. Dyed flour is simple to make, easier to lay, disappears in days not years ,and as importantly  isn’t a blight on the landscape . However the big reason for the switch is that shredder technology has long ago  moved past us. The new machines, one of which we would now need to buy, reduce paper to confetti not trash, so the move is also inevitable.

On On!

 

 

 

 

THE TALE FROM 2081

63rd (Royal Naval) Division and Major General Cameron Shute

The General inspecting the trenches
Exclaimed with a horrified shout
"I refuse to command a division
Which leaves its excreta about".

But nobody took any notice
No one was prepared to refute,
That the presence of shit was congenial
Compared to the presence of Shute.

And certain responsible critics
                                   Made haste to reply to his words
                                   Observing that his staff advisors
                                   Consisted entirely of turds.

                                   For shit may be shot at odd corners
                                   And paper supplied there to suit,
                                   But a shit would be shot without mourners
                                   If somebody shot that shit Shute

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

THE TALE FROM 2800

This true story today dates back to 1910 when the British Royal Navy really did rule the waves and HMS Dreadnought was the most powerful ship afloat. However, she, her officers and crew and indeed the whole Royal Navy was soon to be reduced to a laughing stock by one man and a few of his friends.

He was Herbert De Vere Cole an inveterate prankster from his Cambridge University days.

 He and a few friends decided to have some fun with the Navy and Cole organised for an accomplice to send a telegram to HMS Dreadnought which was then moored in Portland Harbour.  The message said that the ship must be immediately  prepared for the visit of a group including The  Prince of Abyssinia one Prince Musaka and was purportedly signed by Foreign Office Under-secretary Sir Charles Harding.  Cole with his entourage then went to London's Paddington station where Cole claimed that he was "Herbert Chumlee" of the Foreign Office and demanded a special carriage to Weymouth; the stationmaster faced with a foreign office official and a group of foreigners in  flowing robes  arranged a VIP coach to be added post haste to the train to Weymouth  .

On the train De Vere Cole changed into his disguise as The Prince of Abyssinia and so, on  February 7, 1910 the Prince Musaka  and his entourage were received with full ceremonial pomp on the deck of the H.M.S. Dreadnought. The Abyssinian party acknowledged the greeting with bows as they shuffled onto the ship, and for the next forty minutes the Commander gave them a full guided tour of the vessel. The Abyssinians paused at each new marvel while murmuring the appreciative phrase "Bunga, Bunga!" in their supposed native tongue.  After bestowing fake Abyssinian medals on many of the ships officers, the royal visitors departed as "God Save the King!" played in the background.

The next day the Navy was mortified to learn that the party they had escorted around the warship had not been Abyssinian dignitaries at all. Instead it had been a group of young,  pranksters. .

By February 12 the British newspapers were full of the story of the stunt. "Bunga Bungle!"  trumpeted the National press. For a few days the Navy was the laughingstock of Britain. Sailors were greeted with cries of "Bunga, Bunga" wherever they went. The Times newspaper even suggested that the Navy should change the name of Dreadnought  to the Abyssinian.  Humiliated and furious, the Navy sent the warship out to sea until the episode blew over. It wanted to bring formal charges against the pranksters, but dropped the idea for fear that it would simply attract more publicity to the case.

In 1915 Dreadnought became the only Battleship ever to sink an enemy submarine. One of the congratulatory  telegrams received on board read Bunga Bunga signed Prince Musaka .