One of the Local QRPers came hippity-hopping up the hill the other day, this one clearly with a new idea to shed on this world of DX. He sat down in the corner and started right in, "You know all the fuss that's been going around about the DXCC program and whether new ones should count or not? Like BV9P and BS7H and 5A1A? And was Romeo really in Burma when he signed XY0RR? And why they shouldn't count P5RS7 or 5A0RR." He stopped for breath, and then continued on. "And it takes them so long to make up their minds! Why some of these issues seem to go on for ever." We had to admit these were concerns the ARRL had to deal with. "Some of these things take time.", we replied, "and the league always gets them sorted out."
"Well", the QRPer said,"I have a solution that will fix the problem!" At this point we wern't sure what the problem was, but since a solution was being offered, what could we do except listen?
"I've watched all the discussions and the boards and committees", the QRPer said, slowly gathering speed, "and I know why they can't decide anything. It's a two fold problem. First of all, they are not in touch with the DX community. Second, there are too many of them. There is the DXAC and the DXCC awards committee and the ARRL Board of Directors. And maybe a few more committees that I don't know about!"
We nodded slowly, keeping a neutral face. "Well, who can decide if a DX station is legitimate or if a contact is valid? Who can do that in just five seconds?" he asked, jumping to his feet and staring at us with his beady little eyes. "Who?", we asked, wishing we'd ducked out the back door as soon as we saw the QRPer heading up the hill.
"DX Net controllers.", he said, with a triumphant smile on his face. "As soon as you say 'When last heard, you were four by four' and the net controller says GOOD CONTACT, it's over with! Net controllers know how judge a QSO and they sure know whether the station is good for DXCC too!" Our jaw dropped for a split second, but we were able to recover without the QRPer noticing. "All we have to do is replace the ARRL's DXAC and DXCC Awards Committee with DX net controllers! With the solar cycle being so low, there are lots of net controllers with spare time from the 10 and 15-metre nets. And when the really tough decisions are necessary, we can bring in the pros from 20-metres!"
We just stared at the QRPer and listened in awe! "Just one committee", he ploughed ahead, "the DX Net Decision Desk, the DXNDD. Once the DXNDD proclaims a DX station a GOOD CONTACT!, it's a counter! Now what do you think of that?", he asked, staring us right in the eye.
Son of a Gun! What could we say? This was clearly out of our league. So we took the QRPer over to see the Old Timer, where he repeated his story once again. The Old Timer scratched his head for a few seconds, then said, "Why don't you get this idea rolling at Dayton this year?", he said. "I would imagine you could find W3AZD at Dayton, don't you think? And he certainly knows a lot about the DXCC program, right?" The QRPer looked a bit puzzled for a moment, then said quickly, "Yes, couldn't miss him." Then the Old Timer said, "Once you find W3AZD, hunt down WA4JTK and the three of you sit down over dinner and hash out the details." The QRPer looked at the Old Timer as he got up. "That's just what I'm going to do!", he said, with a big smile, "thanks for the advice. I knew I had a good idea, I just didn't know how to sell it. Once I get those two Big Guns on my side, the league is sure to buy it" And with that he was off down the hill, heading toward the travel agency to make sure his tickets to Dayton were booked well in advance.
We looked at the Old Timer for a moment, then asked, "Are you going to Dayton this year?", we asked? "No, I don't think I'll bother.", he replied, "How about you?" We thought for a second or two and then replied, "No, we'll likely be staying home this year." And with that we got up and made our way back to the shack. We sometimes wondered at the wisdom of the Old Timer, but this time he'd applied one of the Mysteries of the Ages to what seemed to be an impossible situation. We figured the news might even reach the Marin County DX Group. Word of the DXNDD might even be published in one of the May issues of the WCDXB! DX IS!
Best Regards, Paul
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