2008 is now history. May it RIP and never, and I mean never, should we speak of it again. When I recall that fateful year I begin to understand what 1929 felt like before people got hungry. Nuff of that.
I added a couple of nice links to my “Good Stuff” right margin links area this weekend. Both are from Japanese stations and both are in English. There are some pretty good blogs out there dedicated to the Art of Morse but these were both pretty good reads with a mixture of radio, Morse and eclectic topics that I always find enlightening. One is Brass Pounder’s Cafe and the other is CW4EVER. The latest post on Brass Pounder’s was interesting as it began to address some weighty questions I have been wondering about since I took up the ancient practice of code. In this case Leo wondered aloud about his sons interest in medium wave listening. Extending that discussion here and broadening it a bit will undoubtedly lead to other questions like,”how much time does this guy have on his hands anyway”? Answer: Too much!
For instance: What ever happened to curiosity? My kids do not seem to have a lot of that trait. That has been troubling to me because I value curiosity pretty highly. I do not know if this is correct, but I see a correlation between electronic media in the form of TV, Internet, Games and other modern force feeding of information/entertainment to a growing lack of curiosity. I could be (and probably am) all wet on this subject, however, the constant bombardment of electronic media and the attendant reduction in creative play and reading seems to go hand in hand with a decrease in curiosity. Obviously a question for anthropologists in another century.
Why CW? Uh Oh. Here we go again. I have finally tumbled onto my rationale for my affliction with Morse. It satisfies several very real needs. First I have a need to play an instrument. I used to play (don’t laugh now) the cello. That was pretty cool believe it or not and filled some inner need for me. I also like to listen to music. Perhaps the two go hand in hand? Who knows but Morse seems to fill that void. On another level we could ask why Morse or why QRP or in fact why even Ham Radio? Here again I have a suggested answer that satisfies my personal equation. In my case, I enjoy being independant of all the complications of modern society. With very little effort I could communicate by being off-grid with respect to power and also all the complications involved with using any other form of communications. Mind you I have not done this off-grid yet, but I am comforted by the knowledge that I could easily should the need arise. All other forms of communications are dependent on AC power, Central Offices, Cell Towers, Server Farms, and a bunch of other dependencies I haven’t even thought of yet. With “Just in Time Everything”, societal dependencies are everywhere and uncomfortably fragile for my sensibilities. So there it is; Morse and Ham Radio tame my sense of security and feed my aesthetic self. Not to mention it is a great platform for learning and rumor has it copying code is a way to stave off Alzheimer’s. 🙂
New Years resolution: Work to get my lousy sending as proficient as my ability to copy code in my head. My fist is lagging my code copying abilities by some large margin.
Thanks for reading. Best, Chas W7MAP/5