Here we go:
Vienna's first Beer Mile…
For those unfamiliar with the Beer Mile, it is most famous for being Canada's most famous (only?) invention; part microcosm of the Hash staples of something resembling r*nning/walking/crawling and drinking, part spectacular sufferfest: drink one beer then r*n a quarter mile (400m), repeat four times – and r*n a fifth lap as a penalty if you at any stage before finishing vomit. Lance Armstrong tried it once, but he gave up after one beer/lap because it was too hard - I guess beer isn't his drug of choice. After years of proposals in Vindobona Circles, March 24, 2018, will now go down in history as the date that the first Beer Mile in Vienna, or indeed Ostrichland period, finally took place. (Well, technically it was the fourth, but as it was the first with more than three entrants, the first with more than two finishers, and the first with actual Ostriches taking part, it does enough to warrant that title.)
The Beer Mile, naturally, has history with the Hash. A total of 50 Hash kennels and well over 400 Hashers around the world have completed a qualifying official "Kingston Rules" Beer Mile – which means getting to the end, doing so drinking four beers of at least 355ml (though as we can only get 330mls in Europe, close enough) of – and, this is important – 5% abv. Which rules out a good 75% of every American attempt ever. For the stats fans, any of those in Vienna?, who have asked: the H3 average all-time is around 15:30, with the Harrierette average at just under 17:00 (with a record time of 9:11). The slowest H3 time (they still completed it!) is 58:18, which gives Tonto something to aim for in future, and Bratislava is, of course, the world's fastest Hash at 5:56. The Hash Record, which is held by the 69th quickest Hasher by personal best, is currently 9:51 by one Major Pecker (I hope one day it is one of the amazingly named "Deep Space 69," "Ich Liebe Dick," or "Brazilian Whacks Off". Or that the San Diego Hasher "Only Comes in a Kid's Meal," who we found researching this, completes one sometime soon. Power Kraut should be probably NEVER be made aware of this event.
Anyway, to bring this to Vienna and those VH3ers wishing to participate themselves, first, we had to solve a problem: Austrian Sports Unions are as likely to share their running tracks as Mind the Gap is to share his own Hash fries, perhaps with good sense when it comes to the Beer Mile: one Albanian by the Hash name of Major F*ck Up, recently in Bratislava vomited so much over our own facilities that we actually had to build an ark to be able to get to the vending machine to buy water to wash the flooded lanes clean. With this in mind, we were forced to find our own public venue. Luckily, the City of Vienna authorities were kind enough to mark an out-and-back course 200 metres in each direction, making a 400-metre loop, on the Prater Hauptallee which resembled more the original black laned Olympic Stadium in Athens*, kind of aptly for the Herculean task awaiting our entrants. (*More on them in a minute, but here a quick aside to praise Canadian Hash legend Little Big Man who actually defied security to do a Beer Mile on that very track last year – this is the H3 standard to which we should all aspire!)
So it was then, that a mix of Vindobona/Bratislava Hashers, a handful of Austrians half Barefoot's age, who we probably shouldn't enquire how he found, and one total random who – we have no idea how – found out about the event from LGB's posting on Facebook, descended upon the terminus of the #1 tram in Prater, just in time for XX to claim credit for the first genuinely nice day of spring. Said young Austrians had us waiting around for 15 minutes as our beers slowly warmed – the result of preparing for the event with a 4am tequila session for which they were duly and suitably cruelly penalized as their girlfriends beat them to the last 330ml size beers in the Tankstelle, meaning they were forced to drink 500mls instead.
With M.o.M., Nail Me, 3 Dicks at Once, and A.N.a.L. on the sidelines serving as timers, moral support and Schadenfreude administrators – and with XX offering (shivers as he types this) flashing services, the field of 12 received their final destructions from Barefoot, as Pink was unable to contribute due to having spent the entirety of his bus ride from Bratislava trying not to incur his own personal penalty lap: man flu is a killer, people. And then they were off, to the sight of a slightly bemused Mr. Pink as Token Canadian Joe sprinted past him (first time for everything, Vienna!) not 20 metres after the first beers had been downed, only to then lose the lead 300 metres later clutching his stomach and ruing that his tactic of going 100% from the gun "might not have been a good idea." Personally, if I were offering him Beer Mile advice, I'd have started with "don't drink wifebeater (Stella Artois)" but chivalry has no place in our ranks.
The Mile passed in a blur, more for some than for others (probably those on Ottakringer), and despite the attempts of the standard Prater fauna of people not looking where they are pointing the front wheels of their bikes, joggers in headphones moving in right angles as they watch YouTube videos, dogs on extendable leads to which the connection to their owners is notional at best, and more k*ds than an Amstetten basement straying across our track, collisions were somehow avoided and the finishing times read out, with various records falling. As, it should be mentioned, did all the young Austrians who took part in the event into one heap at the finish line, the assembled age of which was still junior to XX. Whereupon, much rejoicing was had and sins within the run discussed (stop me when this sounds familiar) and all retired to a nearby Biergarten to bask in the year's first warm sun while paying grotesquely-inflated prices for what passes as beer in the Austrian capital and enjoying the sight of at least one children's playground animal ride being stripped of its innocence by one of the barely legal-to-drink Austrians, as another philosophized on the passing-of-time with the sad lament that his "girlfriend turns 19 tomorrow." Meanwhile, a third member of the crew postured that XX was the Rick of Rick and Morty of our group, which, I think, is some sort of huge kudos down-with-the-kidz Down Down.
As for the times for anyone interested, Mr. Pink defended the Hash honour (such as it has any) to stroll in sick at 8:17, new boot Manuel (the Facebook find) set the Austrian Men's National Record with a time of 8:46 – for shame Hot Property! (10:25), who was also pipped for a podium place by Joe, who overcame his early overly ambitious start to finish third at 10:24. Barefoot (12:45), knocking back 6% root beer, somehow avoided a penalty lap and showed enough fortitude to then complete the "Nautical Beer Mile" which adds 265 yards and one "good swig o' rum" onto the end of the event, before Just Lisa claimed the new official Austrian Women's NR with 16:50. Over five minutes back at 22:05 came Robin, who although being the leader of the 500ml drinkers, only actually wins the MTG Trophy for being beaten by his girlfriend. After another 5 minutes of slapstick/physical comedy the four young Austrians rolled in at 27:50, 28:34, 29:12 and finally 30:30 – the final two taking great pride in their penalty laps earned by two spectacular displays of public hurling. So, if any Hasher wants to drink from the fountain of youth and beat a bunch of late teenagers/guys in their early 20s, the bar has been set!
We'll certainly be doing this again, possibly in May, and in the meantime hopefully the real result will be we've picked up a few new recruits for VH3! This was our biggest recruitment tool in Toronto and there is a lot of crossover, for anyone who sneers at it.
And never has MoM been more vocal in anything, EVER, than his firm NO objection to ever taking part in such an event (4x Coke or Chocolate Milk for the non-drinkers)!