Monday, 26 October 2015

Ham radio is a big enough hobby for everyone ...

I did not start this blog to pour out home-spun philosophy.

(Why did I start this blog ?)

Anyway, here are some more thoughts from my forehead.

I just wrote a very long outpouring justifying every thing I do. The idea was to graciously allow you lot to do what ever you want so long as I can do the same. I've deleted it.

In brief (this is brief?), the idea was:-

I don't do CW (mostly because I don't think I am any good at it, but also I am scared of people who go too fast)
I don't enter contests (mostly because I am uncompetitive)
I don't support my local club (mostly because they don't support me and the work I used to do there)

But because I do not do any specific thing, that does not mean I want it to be stamped out.

You are all welcome to do it. I do not want to convert you to my way of thinking. I just want to explain my motives and my odd ways of doing things. You are free to ignore me, do your own thing, and generally carry on as before. It is a free world and it is up to you (and me) what we do.

I am just glad you read this stuff. Use it or not - it is a free world.

Sometimes I hear from people who maybe get the idea that in this blog I am trying to promote some great plan or something. No, I just want to explain what I am doing. I am not trying to convert you. I just put out my ideas, and you can ignore them all you like.

I think this comes about after a conversation with a great VHF DXer with a superb location and HUGE towers. He said that he would "see me on KST". KST is a VHF-ers chat site. I tried it and found it the most boring place in the world (WORSE than our local club).

So I said "I am not on KST" and he replied in an agitated way "What, you want us to go back to the dark ages without the cluster and no computers or e-mail and all that?".

Erm, no, that is not what I said. I pointed out to him that I am all for things like KST, I just do not do that particular part of the hobby myself. He did not seem very impressed. I told him I get contacts by calling CQ or replying to others. What a shock for him that was.

What I find with KST is that people sit there and watch it as a substitute for listening on the bands or calling CQ. Well, that is up to them, but it is not what I do.

Just because I do not do KST or Echolink, or something else, does not mean I want to go back to using smoke signals or carrier pigeons instead.

There are large parts of this hobby I do not do. You are just as entitled as me to do parts and leave out other parts. You can even leave out the parts I like. Work away. Just because I don't do it does not mean I want it stamped out.

Or you can do any part of it your unique way. I listen on 50.999 for DX, copy the morse, and post the reception reports on the DX Cluster. I don't work them on CW because generally they are sending so fast I have no hope of working them. So I do it at a level I am comfortable with. I like it that way. What's the problem? And you do it your way, and I am keen to hear of your success.

I do not enter contests because I am not competitive. At school I hated competitive games (the games master had a need to line us all up and examine us for "unhealthy" underwear by pulling down everybody's shorts in quick succession, which never helped). I could not see the point of trying to win the sprint race. But when he set us gruelling circuit training of climbing bars, jumping vaulting horses and lifting huge weights, I excelled. Because that was competition against myself and the watch. I was trying to do better every time in an absolute sense, and I loved that.

So I am not competitive, I never have been, but I love setting goals and beating them myself. No contest entries from me, but if I can work somebody further away in a contest and learn something, that is what I do and we both gain.

Please take this blog as a simple (!!!) explanation of what I do,. If any of it is useful, feel free to use it to develop YOUR hobby. But there is no need to do it like me, and I think you are fully entitled to do it whatever way you want to (even if you use KST, enter contests and run sprint races competitively).

That other photo was just the "red" cooking apples, by the way. Here are some of the "green" cooking apples. Some of the red cookers are partly green, and some of the green cookers are partly red. I have to leave it up to Mrs FVM to sort it out. Had a great apple crumble last night though.



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