It was a one-ringer that woke me this Saturday morning, and that usually means there is something rare on the bands. As most hams now know, I'm the HF DXer who proves to the fraternity that the "Little guy", can also make it onto the Honor Roll. Chasing DX, however is only one of my passions: I'm a Big Game hunter, and Sports Fisherman as well. During the week I'm the owner of Timmy's Coiffure Heaven, an up-scale hair salon for rich broads with bored lives who love to be fussed over. I live in a swanky top-floor condo overlooking Ocean Side, with a grand view of the horizon in all directions. I've got an 18AVT on the roof, and an Icom 781 in the shack. On my way to my breakfast nook, I flicked on my 781 and while I was preparing my cafe au lait, it scanned all the DX Listnets, pausing just long enough on each one for me to hear if there was anything I needed; there wasn't. I find it extremely amusing when I hear the boys complaining about losing a night's sleep trying to catch a New Country, or spending hours in the shack spinning the dial, in hot pursuit. DXing is really quite simple if you approach it right. A recent DX operation was a case in point. I simply phoned the net "List" manager and got on the List ....nothing to it! The 781 was programmed to monitor the frequency and the audio was patched into my apartment speakers. When it came time to call the DX station (which incidently, I could not hear) I simply repeated my call after the net control had called me by my full call (with his big 2KW-5EL system). I gave the guy a modest 3 by 3 report and correctly guessed he would give me the same report in return. The usual, "Good contact, good contact," was heard. Nothing to it .... when you know how the system works. Life's like that folks .... i.e., the spoils go to the swift and the smart. Anyway, as I said, I've other hobbies. Later that same day I was tooling along the harbour front in my fully restored '32 Isotta-Fraschini, Tipo 8B, when my attention was diverted to a huge crowd of fishermen lining the dockside, and hundreds more standing in their boats with their rods and reels, all yelling excitedly about a dolphin that had been sighted and apparently trapped in the murky harbour waters. Now that would be a catch! As a matter of fact, even I don't have a dolphin on my trophy-room wall, and it was obvious someone was going to catch the prize as there were at least a thousand men, women and kids, scrambling over the scene with all manner of net and rod. Frankly, I found the frenzy revolting, so I headed back home, but on the way was troubled by how I would handle the stories that would surely follow upon the heels of the local dolphin hunt. There was my reputation to consider, after all, I was well known for my skills in Sports Fishing, just as my skills in DXing are quite celebrated. By sheer coincidence Eva's Queen of the Seas, fish market was on my way. I wondered if Ol'Eva might have a dolphin in one of her tanks. Inside, customers waited in long lines. Well, experience has taught me that only dumbbells wait in line, so I stepped into the nearest phone booth and called Madam Eva, and yes, she had a dolphin. When I came through the back door, Eva was in the tank and up to her ass wrestling the big fish into a net. Eva knew from experience that as I was a sportsman in the modern tradition, and would insist on making the kill. Eva's big powerfull arms encircled the beast and I plunged the ten-inch long fish knife repeatedly into the dolphin until the tank was red with blood and gore. The thrashing was soon over. Eva shouted, "Good catch, good catch." Later, I told Eva, that my taxidermist, would be in touch with her on the following Monday. It will be a nice addition to my trophy-room, I said. Eva agreed. Well chaps, see you later. I think I hear another one-ringer. (The foregoing is a fictional account of a day in the life of Timmy The Twerp, a modern DX List Patron. Any resemblance to HF DXers, living or dead is pure coincidence.) FROM: Don Newlands, VE3HGN
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