We all put our pants on the same way………

Posted: January 6, 2014 in Uncategorized
I’m just a humble DXer. I’m not in any way perfect. I try to operate as best as I can, but I slip up from time to time.
I listen to the experts and I digest what they say. That is why I am so surprised when I hear the experts make the very mistakes that they lecture and write about. I notice that they are imperfect as well.
Last year, I heard a well known amateur calling out of turn in a big pileup. I was surprised later to learn that he is in the CQ Magazine’s DX Hall of Fame. I thought his operating was poor and inconsiderate of others. I recently heard another well known amateur in a 20 SSB pileup trying to work 7O2A. I was sporadically calling in the pileup but I could not help hearing this other station constantly calling and also calling out of turn. No matter who 7O2A came back to, this DXer continue calling. This well known amateur is a famous DXer/Contester and author of books on how to operate. He speaks and lectures others on how to operate.
I told a few of my friends what I had heard and they said that this guy is well respected and would never operate that way. They suggested that I email this famous amateur and ask him if that was him or whether someone was abusing his call. I reluctantly emailed the DXer and politely asked about what I heard. Much to my surprise, this DXer politely responded that it was indeed him that I heard!   Well, my opinion of him instantly changed. I had read his books and hung on his every word. I had developed a ton of respect for him based on his writings. I could not imagine that the author of these words could be found operating so inconsiderate of others. My bubble burst.
Last night, I was in a 40 meter SSB pileup trying to work 1A0KM. He was asking for stations on the West Coast. Suddenly, a well known figure in DXing and Contesting called him and got him with one call. This caller also does a lot of speaking and writing about how to conduct oneself in pileups. He is also in the DX Hall of Fame. He does not live in what we would normally consider the West Coast. After his contact, the 1A0KM continued asking for the West Coast and I logged them minutes later. He was in and out quickly and unless he had just turned his rig on seconds before, he had to hear the DX asking for the West Coast.
I guess my point is that we are all mortal human beings whether we are armchair DXers or Hall of Famers that charge money to attend our seminars on how to operate or we publish books on the fine art of operating. We all put our pants on the same way.
My point is that even the guys who have achieved great levels of recognition and respect in this hobby put their pants on the same way that we do. One leg at a time. No better and no worse.
What do you think?
Paul N6PSE
  1. ky6r says:

    I have seen the same hypocracy, and its very much like how a DX Cop operates. Lets just say I don’t hold any DX-er up on a pedestal like I used to. I’ll take their good advice and try to use it, but I don’t believe in the omnipotent DX Hero like I did when I started DX-ing. I take some advice with a big grain of salt some times.

  2. Olivier says:

    I think EXACTLY the same thing Paul ! no matter the famous is the guy or not…73 F4FQH Olivier

  3. N7SMI says:

    I’ve seen this behavior many times also. My (would have been) ATNO QSO with 7O2A on 20 meters SSB was busted due to a caller (probably the same one you refer to) continually calling over top of me as Dima tried for probably 90 seconds to make a good contact through the heavy QRM. Probably 8 out of 10 times that someone is inadvertently (or intentionally) not working the proper split, or tuning up on frequency, or calling out of turn, it’s a 4 character call sign that has DXCC honor roll or more already.

    It’s hypocrisy and a sense of entitlement. The best we can do is to never follow their example.

    I will say, however, that being in Utah, I *will* call when the DX station calls for “West Coast”. I’m closer and have more similar propagation to the West Coast than to the mid-West, and nobody EVER asks for “Rocky Mountains Only”.

  4. K0YQ says:

    Big difference between an operating mistake and operating obnoxiously. I’m burning my copy of that book right after I tear down the vertical.

  5. Glen W6GJB says:

    It’s not only inconsiderate, it’s stupid, too. You’re not going to make the contact with bad timing.
    This fella thinks he’s “tail ending” as described in his books, but that takes good timing to work. A good operator on the other end should ignore such calls. The exception being simplex, where unfortunately, it’s all too successful with some operators.

    With the proliferation of P3’s and SDR pan-displays, It’s easy to see how prevalent out of turn calling really is. Someone should put together a presentation for Dayton, Visalia and available for local club meetings with recordings and screen captures. Maybe some of the violators just need some education on the matter. Show folks how “listen more, talk less” is actually the key to getting through a pileup quicker.

    On another day I, too, tried to work 1A0KM when he was calling for the West coast. The wall of Eastern stations kept calling regardless of instructions. Unfortunately the operator kept working them! It was hopeless.

    73, Glen W6GJB

  6. Luke VK3HJ says:

    I can guess whom you are writing about. I too have enjoyed his books.
    Well, this type of behaviour has shown that it is effective in making a QSO, sometimes. Mostly it just annoys the other callers who are trying to do the right thing.
    We can learn something from everyone. The good and the bad. I’ve met a number of people whom I respect for what they say, but not what they do!
    Let’s always make the “right” choice and still be able to consider ourselves “gentlemen”.
    We don’t need any more unpleasantness in a hobby that is supposed to be an enjoyable recreation.
    What next, a Black List published on the Internet?
    Luke VK3HJ

    • N6PSE says:

      Luke, I have no intention of naming names or blacklisting anyone.

      • Luke VK3HJ says:

        I have seen “Black Lists” published by some operators. I’d not like to go there either.
        My approach is just to ignore the offenders and persist in working those on whom they are trying to tread.
        Rick K6VVA suggested in a recent presentation for the DXpedition operator to name the offenders and their bad behaviour. That’s a tough approach too.
        To work the bully LIDs to “get them out of the way” is another suggestion, but that just rewards bad behaviour.
        Never, ever reward bad behaviour.
        Luke VK3HJ

  7. Paul N5PG says:

    ” To work the bully LIDs to “get them out of the way” is another suggestion, but that just rewards bad behaviour.”

    Until they find later that they’re mysteriously not in the log 🙂

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