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Author Topic: Interesting Observations since 1993...  (Read 1186 times)
DISCONE
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Posts: 30




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« on: April 14, 2010, 06:51:16 PM »

I've been in the hobby since 1993, and over the years I have made some interesting observations. I'd like to hear what everyone thinks.

Ham Radio sure is a breed of its own. I have participated in many hobbies - Fishing,Camping, Firearms, cars, motorbikes, RC cars, cycling, and the list goes on and on. You name it, I probably have done it.

Not in any other hobby - not one - is there such an obsession for death as there is in Amateur Radio. "Silent Keys" as they are known, are worshiped and mourned for years and years after passing. It is like a religion in many aspects, there is a "great pride" in knowing the original holder to a call sign. I have even seen a couple cases where a HAM has put up a website in tribute to a fellow Silent Key who was the original holder of a call, and the new callsign holder created a tribute page complete with pictures of the SK AND his family - without permission. Wow that is some worship! It is also amazing to see how many people look for long lost HAMS of yesteryear, and actually expect Joe Internet to remember that sole HAM, "his name was bob and he was my HS shop teacher and HAM instructor, but he really went by 'buck' and he was from Sticksville HS back in 1963 in Cornfield, Indiana."

Really what is the obsession here? I don't see construction workers being mourned as "silent hammers" or teachers called "silent mentors" or nurses called "silent healers" after death.

Hams really are a special special group!


Hobbies are great, and everyone needs one. Obsession is not. I have come to the conclusion at this point in life that ANYTHING excessive is not good. Even excessive exercise or studying can be harmful. Some Amateur Operators have gone way over the top in this
department. There is a house near me where a HAM and his XYL own a home in an upscale neigborhood, and have over 45 antennas on their roof, along with a roof mounted HF tower. Neighbors are naturally concerned. As people get concerned when they live near a factory and see and smell pollutants on a daily basis, why shouldn't any neighbor have the right to be concerned about RF Radiation? Or the resale value of their home. Sorry folks, and I am sure SOMEONE will get offended but not everyone's idea of beauty is looking out over a yard filled with wire or looking at someone's beloved "MONSTIR STEPPIR".

I knew a HAM who needed brakes for his car and instead he bought a 2m mobile. When it gets to the point where one spends ALL their time with their radios and their shack looks like something out of a bad science fiction movie, it is time for a cold shower and some meds.

And what exactly does it mean when HAMS say that the hobby is a "lifestyle"? Does this mean someone opts getting married for radio, or does it mean someone refuses to work because he needs to devote more time to the hobby? Some HAMS are so obsessed with logging contacts it has become, well an obsession.

Also from what I have observed HAMS are way too reckless for any type of Emcomm operations. This is not playskool. Real emergencies demand trained professionals, not some hacks that can key a repeater.
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W7ETA
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« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2010, 11:16:35 PM »

"..interesting observations. I'd like to hear what everyone thinks."

Your observations are neither interesting nor anything but complaints that belong in the complaint section, AKA "Speak Out".

Grab your soap box, head over to the complaint section, and complain away that the world doesn't center around you.  You can "should" and "outta" on everyone there until your fingers bleed.
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WW5AA
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« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2010, 03:30:25 AM »

Your local mental health line should be able to help you with this obsession you have.

73 de Lindy
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N2EY
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« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2010, 03:33:29 AM »

"Not in any other hobby - not one - is there such an obsession for death as there is in Amateur Radio."

Not at all. We simply remember friends who have gone to the Great Hamshack In The Sky. Is that wrong?

"Hobbies are great, and everyone needs one. Obsession is not.
 I have come to the conclusion at this point in life that ANYTHING excessive is not good. Even excessive exercise or studying can be harmful. Some Amateur Operators have gone way over the top in this department."

That's true of any activity.

More important, who is to decide what is "over the top"?

I know people who put enormous resources into their boat, yet use it relatively little. Antiques and collections of all kinds - amateur musicians - amateur artists - sports fans and many more kinds of activities have followers whom others might call "over the top" or "obsessed".

"There is a house near me where a HAM"

Why all capitals? "Ham" isn't an acronym.

"and his XYL own a home in an upscale neigborhood, and have over 45 antennas on their roof, along with a roof mounted HF tower. Neighbors are naturally concerned."

Why?

"As people get concerned when they live near a factory and see and smell pollutants on a daily basis, why shouldn't any neighbor have the right to be concerned about RF Radiation?"

The number of antennas doesn't determine the RF exposure.

And are there really 45 antennas? Who counted them?

"I knew a HAM who needed brakes for his car and instead he bought a 2m mobile."

Well, that's just dumb. But people do all sorts of dumb things with their money.

"And what exactly does it mean when HAMS say that the hobby is a "lifestyle"?"

It just means they make certain choices based on ham radio.

For example, there are hams who choose not to live where outdoor antennas are prohibited. Hams who choose vehicles based on the practicality of a mobile rig. Hams who forego some things (like a fancy big flat-screen TV or season tickets to the opera or ball game in order to afford a better ham rig.

It's all about choices.

"Does this mean someone opts getting married for radio, or does it mean someone refuses to work because he needs to devote more time to the hobby?"

One of the characteristics of a good marriage IMHO is that the partners respect each others' interests - shared or not.

Working is necessary for most hams - how else can they pay for the essentials, like electricity, ARRL membership, new rigs, antennas, QSLs....

73 de Jim, N2EY
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WG7X
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Posts: 350




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« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2010, 07:29:07 AM »

Quote:"I've been in the hobby since 1993, and over the years I have made some interesting observations. I'd like to hear what everyone thinks."

Really?

Been in the hobby that long and still using a made-up screen name?

Kinda pokes a hole in the rest of your sorry complaint, doesn't it?

Yeah people sometimes get a bit carried away with their hobbies.

So what? How does that affect YOU?

Are you a bit envious of that ham with all the antennas? Sure sounds like it from here.

If you really are a ham and not just another anonymous pot-stirrer, why would you bring up the dreaded "radiation" aspect of radio?

Especially since you don't discern the difference between ionizing and non-ionizing radiation. Its folks like you, stirring the pot, who will eventually have us all sitting in the dark, in the basement, afraid to even go outside.

The sun has harmful "radiation" too; don't cha know?

Give it up already! If being an Amateur radio operator, if indeed you are one, is so stressful, then go do something else.

Knitting sweaters sounds about right...

Then at least you can spend more time with all the other fearful old maids.

73?

Gary
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AA4PB
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« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2010, 07:42:20 AM »

"HAMS are way too reckless for any type of Emcomm operations"

Odd observation because (expecially in more isolated places) hams seem to handle the communications until the "professionals" can arrive on scene and get set up. Then hams handle health and welfare traffic that the "professionals" don't have the time for.

I've seen this many times since the late 1950's when I was first licensed.
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K9FON
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« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2010, 11:46:52 AM »

Hooooo boy! Another post to gripe about our hobby. If you dont like the, hobby get out of it!
Not all hams are obsessed with the hobby. I work, have a girlfriend that i spend time with, spend time with my family and friends, and yes i have time to "play radio". As far as ecomms are concerned, I dont care for ARES, but thats my opninon and i have my reasons i dont support ARES.
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W0FM
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« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2010, 02:31:36 PM »

Amateur Radio is a hobby where you meet new people.  Sometimes you get to know them.  Sometimes you get to know them a lot.  Sometimes you get to like them.  Sometimes you get to like them a lot.

Why would it be so unusal to want to remember them when they die?


Terry, WØFM
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K9FON
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« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2010, 06:14:13 PM »

Why would someone want to remember them? Because maybe they touched some ones life in one way or another. Whats so bad about that? Im still trying to find the call of one of my dads relatives who was a ham back in the 1940s and 1950s. I dont plan to see if i can get his old call, I just want to see what his call was and when he got it.
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DISCONE
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Posts: 30




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« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2010, 07:29:13 PM »

N2EY: We simply remember friends who have gone to the Great Hamshack In The Sky. Is that wrong?

This is exacty what I am talking about. OF COURSE nothing is wrong with remembering loved ones/great friends, but my point is that ham operators are again, obsessed with it.

Also regarding my point regarding a house with excessive amounts of antennas - I only said that "RF radiation" was one point. THE BIGGER POINT is concern over the home's resale value. Again, I know this is hard to believe, but not everyone wants to look out over a neighbor's antenna farm - some people find it downright ugly. I know this may be hard for you to believe though, but not everyone loves radio, just like how not everyone loves working on cars, but to the people who do a 'big block" sitting in the front lawn for all to see is beauty at it's best.

Like I said I think some hams need some heavy drugs to filter reality.

WG7X: Are you a bit envious of that ham with all the antennas? Sure sounds like it from here.

Puh-leeese. Envious, er um...no. Concerned? YES. Not over radiation, more over the drop in resale value when the neighbors find out some nutty operator next door comes through their alarm clock calling CQ at 5am. Gary, think you went off half-cocked on this one.

WØFM: Why would it be so unusal to want to remember them when they die?

Not unusual, it's the 'obsession' factor.
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WG7X
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« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2010, 06:54:17 AM »

Resale value of homes?

That subject has been beaten to death here and on other forums.

If I remember correctly, the general consensus was that most folks never even see the antennas. This argument is another red herring used to control neighbor's activities.

You sound like a person who would be heartily in favor of home owners associations controlling every aspect of your and your neighbors lives.

HOA's are a blight on the urban landscape. "Home resale values" are simply an excuse to dominate others.

If you bought your home simply as an investment, and not as a place to live....

Well words fail me. When the wife and I bought our home, the cat lady next door asked us if we wanted to form an HOA. Strangely enough I declined, as did the rest of our neighbors. Having our lives controlled by the likes of the cat lady just was not an attractive proposition.

Imagine that!

73 Gary
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N2EY
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« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2010, 08:56:47 AM »

Resale value of homes?


Is very important! Ironically, though, in my limited experience, the resale value of restricted properties is lower than that of unrestricted ones. So is the increase in value. Plus the HOA fees increase the cost of living there.

73 de Jim, N2EY
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WG7X
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« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2010, 01:01:26 PM »

In my humble opinion...

If you only bought a house as an "investment" then you got the beating you so richly deserved last year!

If however, you bought a home to live in, then the market fluctuations are mostly of no consequence; except where taxes and the economy as a whole are concerned.

I value my home very highly, as I suspect most do.

So now back to the Amateur radio aspect of all this.

As mentioned before, if an activity bores you, or otherwise causes you to wonder about any aspect of the activity to the point that you post drivel on the internet, well then...

It's time to quit!

73 Gary
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DISCONE
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« Reply #13 on: April 17, 2010, 02:04:18 PM »

WG7X: If you only bought a house as an "investment" then you got the beating you so richly deserved last year!

Oh, Gary you underestimate me greatly. I live in a very affluent North burb of Chicago, I have lived here over 20 years. People here values their homes VERY much, and it does not go over well even when someone decides to install a TV antenna for DTV.

"If I remember correctly, the general consensus was that most folks never even see the antennas. This argument is another red herring used to control neighbor's activities."

You must not have read my post, but this is again why you have a hard time understanding. I said this house has 45 antennas with a roof mounted tower. IT IS *VERY* visible to all surronding neighbors and on the street. And the crap that this will not affect neighbor's resale values is a crock of BS.

Gary, I've considered knitting sweaters but it's just not for me, sorry to dissapoint you.
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WG7X
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« Reply #14 on: April 17, 2010, 04:19:15 PM »

Quoth the cone:"Gary, I've considered knitting sweaters but it's just not for me, sorry to disappoint you."

That's OK "discone" 'ol bean...

You probably wouldn't be very good at that either.

Stick to scanner monitoring on the discone then and keep off of Amateur radio and we'll all be happier.

73?  Gary
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