The State of DXing


From the 23 May 1979 issue of The West Coast DX Bulletin by Hugh Cassidy, WA6AUD

Often when one collects a reasonable number of DXCC counters, possibly a bare minimum of three hundred or so, the time is right for some contemplation of the State of DXing and the parlous future of it. Last week one of the local QRPers came steaming up the hill to demonstrate, placards and commotion and everything else, all this being one of our fine old California traditions.

“I’m here to protest the ranks of DXers infiltrated by the Undeserving,” the QRPer proclaimed, “it is high time to stop the slide to anarchy and return to the good days we had when Gus Browning and Don Miller were really producing some real rare DX.” We had to know more.

“I’m talking,” the QRPer roared on, “about the fellow who comes in on top of a DX station to advise some of the other stations that he is out of the band. And there is the fellow who comes in right on top of the DX station’s frequency to ask where he is listening, and asking this usually when there is a wild uproar going on twenty kaycees up the band. And the idiot who keeps asking for QSL information even though it is given and repeated about every 5 QSOs. Can’t these jerks listen?”

We were beginning to understand things a little and suspected this QRPer was really working the DX these days and also doing a lot of listening. “Anything else,” we inquired, hoping to soothe the throb of indignation, but he was not finished . . . yet. “And don’t forget the one who comes on the DX frequency to endlessly ask the DX’s location. Even the obvious ones they ask about. What’s wrong with these fellows, anyways?” Son of a Gun, what could we say to all this when everyone knows that these things do happen. But we had a true-blue Deserving type who asked questions needing answers and obviously worried about how the State of DXing was going.

“Sometimes we hear similar things on the two-meter repeaters,” we said, “maybe not exactly the same, but the same tactics. Why do you suppose they are there?” The QRPer put down his sign to lean on it and think. “The only thing I can figure,” he said, is that they are doing it to disrupt things,” and we knew that he soon would be quieting down. “Don’t you think that maybe they are doing the same thing on twenty that they are doing on two?” we asked, “and that every reaction they hear is an encouragement to try harder.”

It was startling but still a pleasure to see the changes come. The QRPer smashed his sign against the ground, retaining only the handle. “You are right”, he said, “and from now on I will be quiet but saving this club should I meet up with one personally.” And with that he started down the hill, but stopped before going too far. “Tell me”, he said, “How did you ever figure that out?”

Actually we didn’t. “The Old Timer had to advise us on this,” we admitted, “he did this years back. About the time Gus Browning and Don Miller were out on their trips.” For actually though the characters change, the theme is often repeated and encouraged. It’s one of the Mysteries of the Ages and the Eternal Enigmas of DXing!


This story is in the public domain and may be reproduced in any format. - VE1DX

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