Tuesday, August 4, 2009

QST & CQ Stinks?!

What happens with your QST or CQ magazine when it arrives? Mine does not sit on the counter very long as either myself or my wife will carry it into the oval office and lay it next to the throne on the bookstand. I can honestly say that I read about 99% of my magazines while participating in the ritual of bowl bonding. My wife hates it when QST puts a person on the front of their magazine and that person is looking toward the camera. She tells me that it feels like the person is looking at her while she is "busy" and she is always turning my magzines over. Kinda makes me laugh a bit since it is only a magazine.

So, how do you read your QST or CQ magazine? It's like an Oreo cookie I suppose, different people have different ways of reading their publications. I scan the front cover quick and if my eye catches any contest results and before I do anything, I will flip that those pages (don't you hate pages that don't have page numbers??). Knowing full well that this little station will never be hanging a plaque on the wall, I enjoy reading the comments and looking at the results. I am always interested to see how I place compared to other stations, especially those in Alaska. Since I am the waterboy of contest stations here in AK, it always makes me wonder what I could have worked if I only had higher and bigger antennas. One can dream, right?

Once I read through all the results and scan through the "QRM" I then find my way back to the front of the magazine. I then see what is featured in the magazine to see if there are any further must read immediately articles. My favorite sections are those dealing with DX'ing and contesting. I am one of those non-techie kinda hams so I will normally skip right over anything that has a circuit board and schematics. Not sure why I have no desire to build anything as I guess I just never had the proper influence or person to nudge me along. Maybe I just spend too much time operating?

If nothing else catches my eye, I then begin working from the front to back of the magazine looking for pictures of new equipment and anything that looks cool! My first breeze through the magazine is just that, a quick page through getting a feel for what I will digest (no pun intended) on my next trip to the library. I have to keep reminding myself that this publication must last a month so I need to take my time. I mean, what is a ham to do if he reads his entire magazine before the next issue arrives? You can only read the labels of so many hair spay cans and bathroom cleaners within reach of the ceramic circle. But like a good movie, it is sometimes a suprise when you re-read something and you find something you overlooked. But when I get to the point where I could transfer the magazine to the outhouse, I will even start to read through all the ham ads. This is my last desperate attempt to keep picking up the same magazine in hopes that the next issue will arrive. There are times, a month can feel like a lifetime and depending on your total seat time in a month, it can even feel longer!

My favorite of my two publications I receive is CQ magazine. Maybe because it appears to have less advertisements in it? QST seems to be mostly ads for the last 50% of the magazine and the first 10%. Sometimes I wished they would arrive in PDF form as I don't keep my old magazines like many hams do. I recycle them to the landfill. But, if they were in PDF, I would have to drag the laptop into the throne room to read my QST. If I have my laptop there it would not take long before I realized I can operate my equipment remotely from the bathroom! Hey, I no longer have to stop calling that new country when the urge arrives! The contest can continue and it counts because it's less than 50 miles away from my shack! The crapper trapper, I would never want to leave! Just think of the possiblities! But what's good for me is good for everyone else in the house, too. Not only would I not be in a hurry to vacate the family rest stop, nor would the rest of my group. Probably best to leave well enough alone. I have seen photos of people taking their magazines to foreign places, even underwater but I have never seen anyone being featured sitting on the crapper while reading the latest contest news and ironically, I would guess that most hams read them there more than any other location.

No comments:

Post a Comment