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Subject: DATELINE CW - By: Ed, KN4Y for December, 2019

A county hunter knows that old roads winding is what old roads do.

December, the last month of the year 2019 is here. Another year of hunting counties,
operating in State QSO parties and the thrill of operation in contests are in the logs.
Attending of local amateur radio clubs throughout the world, the MARAC Conventions
and the many Hamfests are recorded in history. I have strung all the Christmas lights
around the shack and my Christmas tree is mounted on top of the file cabinet. It is
not the size that matters. It is the Spirit of Christmas, the birth of Jesus.

I hear Gator as he downshifts his 4X4 and slides to a stop at the recycled railroad tie.
Gator slides out of the cab carrying a container decorated with bright Christmas colors
and pictures of Santa Claus and Elves. I feel liquid Christmas Spirit coming. Gator
stops at the post box, gets the mail and enters the radio shack. He tosses the mail on
the desk. “Merry Christmas, Dude. Glad you got the heater on.” Gator reaches into
the colorful container and hands me a supersized latte. “Thanks, Gator. This gives me
the Christmas Spirit caffeine lift." Gator laughs. He also gets a latte and turns on the

“Gator, how about checking my ARRL Sweepstakes contest log?” Gator brings up the
Sweepstakes module and stares at it. “Dude, I knew you are busy at the church during
the coming holiday season, but time for only 100 QSOs in the ARRL Sweepstakes log is
not your style. You only logged 54 multipliers.” I interrupt, “Settle down Gator. I did
what I could. Keep in mind when all the big scores from the Florida Contest Group
are added together and then my score is added the final score will increase.” Gator
ignores me.

Gator is looking at the computer screen and gets a sad look, “Dude, do you know Les
KØLG, and Paul N4PN? Both are silent keys. I also get a sad look, “Yes Gator. I worked
Les many times starting in 1998. Paul was my age, a county hunter and a MARAC
member. We started working each other in 1985. I also worked with him in contests
for the Florida Contest Group.” We lower the radio volume, dim the shack lights and
bow our heads as Gator recites the Shepherd’s Psalm.

Gator turns around in the swivel chair. “Dude, fill me in on your bowling tournament
at Orange City, Florida. Did you win top prize?” I laugh. “Gator, this was one of those
bowling tournaments where staying home would have accomplished the same result.
However, I did get to run several Florida counties on the way to Orange City. I tried to
operate on 80 meters on the way back home, but the band was very crowded.” Gator
laughs. “Also you had planned to run the OK/OM DX contest, how did that go?” I give a
thumbs down. “I tried but never heard an OM station. It was a total blow-out for me.
My operating time was limited which did not help the situation. Check out my LZ DX

Gator takes a sip of his latte. “I see you logged 19 QSOs in the LZ DX Contest. I would
not call that bragging rights.” I laugh. “I got on the air early and made a few contacts.
I only listened for and worked LZ stations. It is their contest. I tried to send in a log but
their system kept sending it back and did not say how to fix the problem. After a few
tries I quit, so no log sent in.” Gator giggles, “If at first you don’t succeed, quit.” We
have a laugh and sip our lattes.

I gesture with my hand. “Gator check out my CQ CW WWDX Contest.” Gator brings up
the module and giggles. I do not know why you even bother operating in the CQ Contest.
You only made 50 contacts.” I sip my latte, “Relax Gator, this is a long story. I got signed
up to bowl at the Peanut Bowling Tournament before I realized it was the weekend of
the CQ CW WWDX Contest. I always participate in the Florida Contest Group club total.
Friday night was my only operating time before leaving for Alabama. I started working
stations and fell asleep, I awoke and just rounded the number of QSOs worked to 50.
Now you know.”

Gator’s cell phone goes CQ, CQ, CQ and Gator answers. “Dude, I must get back to the
plant. A group is standing outside yelling, "Take down the Make America Great Again
sign"!” A few free samples of the Great America Elixir and they will be happy campers.
He is gone like a good dose of salts and I hear him yell, “Farewell Nipsey!”

The printer stops and I extract the printout listing the mobile county hunters who
checked into the county hunters’ CW call frequencies during the month of November.
I read: KØFG, K2UA, K4CD, KA4RRU, KB6UF, KN4Y, NØSM, N7JF, W4SIG, and W8OP.

December is another month with no State QSO parties, the withdrawal must be horrible.
But have no fear. December with 33 CW activities is here to lessen the pain. There is
the ARRL CW 160-meter Contest, the ARRL 10-meter Contest for CW and SSB operation
and the ARRL Rookie CW Roundup. There is also the Croatian CW Contest, the Canadian
RAC Winter Contest, and for the topbanders the Stew Perry Challenge.

Damn it is cold! I will move the thermostat up a degree and take a hot nap.


Call: K2MF 12/1/2019

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