This amazes me

While talking with my bud, Bob W3BBO today, we discussed an instance that we had both heard, of a Ham who was selling all his equipment.  It appears this operator feels that he has reached the pinnacle of the hobby by working all the DX that there is to work, “So there’s nothing else to do”, and he’s packing it in.

Bob and I were both incredulous.  He’s been in the hobby for over 50 years and I have been in the hobby for 36 years now.  I do understand that with any undertaking, there are ebbs and flows of enthusiasm and interest.  You might be super active for a period and then lose steam for a while. It might even reach the point of becoming temporarily inactive.  And as John Lennon famously said, “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans”. Life circumstances change, as do priorities.

But to chuck everything and get out of the hobby because you have “done it all?”  I don’t think that’s even possible!

So let’s say you’ve been fortunate enough to work 9 band Honor Roll ……. there’s nothing left?  How about (wait for the plug) trying to do it again using QRP?  Or how about getting into satellites, or digital modes, or perhaps taking a shot at working all counties?  I have a friend, Dr. Paul Scipione AA2AV, who has worked all counties three separate times – SSB, CW and CW QRP. That’s an accomplishment!

Build something, go hilltopping or become active in SOTA or IOTA, go on a DXepdition! Bounce your signals off the ionized trail of a meteor, or the moon.

My point is, Amateur Radio is actually a hobby built up of sub-hobbies. There’s always something new to try and undertake.  The day someone actually does end up “doing it all” will be a very special day, and I’d like to meet and shake that person’s hand.  For indeed, that person will definitely be very special, and I think I would love to read whatever book they choose to write about their adventures.

Scrolling through QRP-L today, I came across a link to a cool article written by Gerry Lynch, a Ham in the UK.  If you’re contemplating learning CW and are not sure it’s worth your time and effort, you might want to read this:

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP – When you care to send the very least!

Larry Makoski, W2LJ, is a regular contributor to and writes from New Jersey, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

3 Responses to “This amazes me”

  • Steve G0PQB:

    It amazes me too. The only similar story I have ever heard was from a Ham who also had been licenced for about 50 years who was going to chuck it all in due to the creeping progress of PLT or whatever you called in the USA but we were all going to be drowned out by QRM on all bands including all the broadcasting bands etc etc. But the area of the UK in which he lived, it is possible to work into western Europe on FM quite easily but I don’t reckon that VHF/ UHF was ever on his compass so he took down his antennas and sold all his gear. Life’s too short as I think the time to do that when you become a Silent Key and not before.

  • Peter kg5wy:

    I guess that’s what awards, contests and goals do to you.
    Once you think you’ve achieved everything, you give it up.
    That’s why I don’t do awards, contests or have big goals.
    I just sit back and enjoy the HOBBY. 🙂

  • David:

    Good advice Peter for anyone’s hobby, I completely agree with you. The older I get the more I realize that “competition” is fine, but it is just a game dating back to grade school.

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