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Saturday, March 14, 2009

What I've done so far...

I've been a ham since 1993. In these last 15+ years:

I've talked on many repeaters, mostly 2 meters. Sometimes on 220. A bunch on 440, once on 10 meters, QSO's made a-plenty.

I've tried many modes, some IRLP nodes, a few on EchoLink. Mainly voice and some APRS, on CW I doth stink.

[enough poetry]

I've sent balloons to near-space, talked to astronauts in space, talked to a couple of hams using repeaters in space, and been told I take up too much airspace.

I've been a VP in one club, President of another, activities director in the club where I eventually became VP, and my public service has been serendipitous. I've done bike races, track races, car races, walk-a-thons, dance-a-thons, marathons, and telethons.

I've been kicked out of more clubs and groups than I can count.

I've called nets on repeaters and HF of all sorts. Tech nets, emergency prep nets, swap nets, ragchew nets, and even a trivia net. SKYWARN nets were the ones I excelled at, until a couple of powermongering ingrates decided I was in their way...

I've done foxhunts, field days, and QSO parties time and again. I've talked to all 7 continents, all 50 states, several dozen countries, and many more remain. [Okay, so I wasn't done with limericks].

I've owned Kenwoods, Yaesus, Radio Shack, and Alinco. I've also had an Icom or two, but boy did they stink-o... [sorry]

I've used MFJ, for TNCs, antenna tuners and a mic. I've used dipoles, J-poles, beams, and the like.

I've dabbled with PSK31, APRS, ATV, SSTV, RTTY, and CW. I've used tube-radios and solid state. I've talked portable, mobile, and from home. In a hotel, camp site, even a church pew...to another ham on the same pew...

I've see the best in ham radio, and experienced the worst ham ops. I've been at odds with friends and foe alike. I've been cursed at by them all. I've been praised more often than that. Politics in ham radio are more vicious than in DC at times.

I've talked from dusk to dawn, dawn to dusk, and all times in between. I've talked on 80 meters, 60, 40, 20, 17, 15, 12, 10, 2, 23cm, and 70cm.

I've been to hamfests in Dayton (Ohio), Dayton (Tennessee), Shelby NC, St. Petersburg FL, and Huntsville AL, along with all the local ones in TN.

I've learned a lot in these 15 years, from standing waves, to forward power, cross mod, propogation, solar cycles, wavelength, modulation, intermod, interference (harmful and unintentional). I've learned a lot about weather, ballooning, physics, chemistry, and even electronics, can you believe?

I've been a Tech, Tech Plus, General, Advanced, and Extra. I've posted in newsletters, recorded for ham news programs, done ham radio web sites, and been featured on TV.

[one final rhyme]

I've been a ham this long and plan to be one for many more. I suppose I'll keep going til I say "nevermore". I may call it quits when it starts becoming a chore. But that may be awhile, because I'm just...about to be 39.

SO what have YOU done?