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A Strange Occurrence!
A few days ago I was in my local Radio
Shack (I am the Ron that lives in Plant City) getting a few parts and I
tried to help a chap with words of encouragement and alternate thinking,
regarding a Xenon lamp "trigger transformer" replacement problem he had,
when he started asking me if I was a "440 handi talkie C.B. operator."
Not ever having been a C.B. operator I did not know what he was talking
about. He had seen the Motorola HT-90 in my back pocket, (one of
the three leashes that I always carry) and I mentioned several times that
it is a commercial radio, but he kept asking me if I was a "440 C.B. operator."
I asked him if he knew when C.B. as we know it began, he muttered something
incomprehensible, and I told him C.B. began in 1958, and Amateur Radio
started about 1901. I told him that I was a licensed HAM and he asked
me again if I was a "440 C.B. operator." I told him: "I don't think
so, I think I can hold own at morse code, at about twenty words a minute.
As I think about it, I think this bloke was in some way jealous of me being
a HAM. If this is so I can't figure what this guys problem is, as
WE know he need only study 250 questions, answer 74% of 55 questions on
a test, and HE will have "all privileges above 30 Mhz as all HAMS other
than Novices have." If you run in to someone talking like this, find
out what the person is talking about and let me know what is going on.
I still remain puzzled about this conversation. I will be going back
to that store more frequently from now on, if I run into this fella I will
hand him one of my "handouts" that I carry for people that are curious
about my radio (under the dash, or HAM radio in general. Why I didn't
give him one, simply because he left me totally confused.
This is my "hand out":
Q. What is HAM RADIO?
Ron KA4INM 813/75-7039 Plant City, Fla.
A. Amateur (French for "done
for the love of it") Radio operators are licensed by the Federal Communications
Commission (in USA, citizenship NOT req.). When you pass a 55 question
written test after studying 250 questions from a book sold at Radio Shack
stores, (NO CODE! & 8-16 week wait!) you will have ALL privileges ABOVE
30 M.Hz. (VHF, UHF, & above.) Beginners privileges on the HIGH frequencies
(lower than VHF, 9 bands with WORLD WIDE contacts and contests) are gained
by passing slow MORSE CODE test, advancing privileges from additional code
and written tests. Some HAMS carry VHF or UHF handy talkies (1/4
to 5 watts out, some 2 bands) some have home and/or car transceivers (5
to 50 watts out), we talk through' local repeaters (up to 50 miles from
tower) to "radio friends," other HAMS, some to work & back. HAM
Radio Operation is structured and severe fines can result from failure
to follow rules and regulations (NO PROFANITY!!! & "call sign" every
10 Min. etc.) It is a HI-TECH hobby (& society) for all ages,
sexes, races, & most physical disabilities, for fun, with numerous
areas of interest (it's own language & abbreviations) including Public
Service, field & emergency operating including ON AIR voice, code &
computer operation - "Packet Radio." ARRL or other publications & HAM
clubs in most cites help prospective & beginning HAMS learn and grow.
Home antennas can be hidden or disguised if required. Florida vanity
tags with HAM "call sign" are NOT $20 extra yearly. HAM radio began
around 1901, 11 meter C.B. Radio began in 1958 they are entirely different!
Listen to the HAMS (between 145 and 148 MHz) on a scanner, you might
like us, if you do, join us!
73 (our abbreviation for "best regards")
Ron KA4INM firstname.lastname@example.org