Timmy the Dxer was closing in on the magic 300-countries total, and knowing he had done it all with a hundred watts and a vertical gave his pride a substantial boost ... a boost he needed because he knew better than anyone that he was by nature a cheat and a liar. Up until recently Timmy's reputation was secure, after all, he had the QSL cards to prove it; but after the recent Bouvet Island DXpedition, where no List operation occurred, Timmy failed to make a contact. Without a list operation and Timmy's lack of operating skills, coupled with his low power and a vertical, presented a challenge even the wily Timmy could not overcome. And what made things intolerable for Timmy were the cutting remarks he knew were circulating among his ham friends. He had, in fact, become the butt of cruel jokes. Working some 300 countries barefoot with a vertical was no mean accomplishment by anyone's standards. However, only Timmy knew he had accomplished the difficult task by working Lists exclusivly; not once had he ever been embroiled in a no-holds-barred pile-up. To have failed in making contact with Bouvet was a defeat he was ill prepared to accept, and the derision he felt swirling about his reputation threatened the very foundation of his deception. Missing out on a rare one was one thing, being known as a List Louse was intolerable. The prospect of having to face the kids in his radio club who had worked Bouvet, some even casually, on dipoles, and a hundred watts became a nightmare. Timmy needed an excuse, and one that would stand up to the derisive questioning he knew was out there waiting for him. Timmy knew he couldn't claim to have been out of town because he had been heard and criticised for calling incessantly on the DXpedition's calling frequency. And he certainly couldn't blame his $6-thousand 781 Icom when some of his Club members had worked Bouvet with HW101's, skilfully spinning the VFO from one frequency to the other. No, this time Timmy was on his own and couldn't cut it. Timmy had squatted long hours on the "List Takers" frequencies hoping the Bouvet operation would show so he could make his typical easy-when-you-know-how contact but, alas, Snooky, Don, Eva, Jim and many others, had failed him. Day after day Timmy skulked around the bands looking for a list operation that would same him from humiliation, but none was heard. Eva and all the rest of the DX pimps had failed him. And, after all, becoming involved in a pile-up was not his style, and never would be. A pile-up for Timmy was something messy, unseemly and fundamentally rude; it reminded him of the rough-and-tumble days of childhood which he avoided, preferring to retire to the drawing room with his paintboxes and coloring books or when Mommy requested, pose demurely in black tights in fifth ballet position. Whatever Timmy was feeling at this time was, however, not new. He felt the same sensations during his days at University when weekends were spent pursuing girls and ended when his classmates headed for the motel strip. Timmy, somewhat sadly, had to pay for it at the local brothel. In his depressed state the analogy struck him like a stone. In his middle age the Ham radio List operation, had become what the brothel had been for him as a student and the truth, painful as it was, haunted him, stared him in the face; i.e., he had never been able to do anything on his own. When Timmy crawled into bed alone this night he hoped he would once again dream of his mommy, holding him in her arms and spoon feeding her Lil'Timmy, but tonight, instead of Mommy it was Dragon Lady Eva, looming large and hoarsely ejaculating, "No Contact, No contact". Note: The foregoing episode in the Adventures of Timmy The Twerp, is fictional and any resemblance to characters living or otherwise is purely accidental. DON, VE3HGN
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