DX Stories by Paul M. Dunphy, VE1DX


We were sitting in the shack, contemplating the Mysteries of the Ages and, if anyone had asked, we were admiring our BS7H QSL. Now that the league had added Scarborough Reef to the DXCC country total, we had to admit to ourselves that the card was a bit brighter looking. We found the colors a bit deeper, the artwork a bit better. It simply was a nicer looking card than it had been a month ago! Son of a Gun! We were pretty sure the card hadn't changed, but it did look different. It almost had taken on a mystical look, capturing our attention for hours at a time. We were starting to think of some of Stephen King's novels when the door burst open and in stomped one of the Local QRPers!

"Put that card away", the QRPer said, "and stop gloating about it too. There are more serious problems in this world of DX than that! It counts. Now we have to move on to something that's more important." We looked at the QRPer for a moment, then glanced back at the BS7H QSL . . . and to be quite honest, we would rather have looked at the QSL that the QRPer! But, we remembered what our mother taught us about being polite, so we put the BS7H QSL back in the file and turned our attention to the QRPer.

"What's up now?", we asked, "the controversy has settled and it's a great time to be a DXer!" The QRPer drew himself up to his full five and a half feet and glared at us. "No, it isn't", he replied,"it isn't all. The 5A1A problem is far more serious than the BS7H. Where are the QSLs? Why hasn't the league made a decision? I had to pound away for a week just to get a single CW QSO on 20-metres. My cousin, East-Coast Bob, has it worked from 160 through 10-metres! Bob and I need Libya for a new one. Why all the waiting? You, of all people, should see how serious this is. What if it never counts?"

What could we say to such a barrage of questions? We decided to try them one at a time. We knew East-Coast Bob was in a far better location to work 5A than us suffering-sixes. We also knew East-Coast Bob had a tendency to exaggerate his DX successes. So, we simply said "Well, Bob is at least 4000 miles closer to 5A than we are, so don't feel bad that he has it on a few more bands than you do. You've got both JD1s on the low bands and we are willing to bet Bob doesn't. It all balances out." The QRPer looked a little happier, but his scowl soon returned. "OK, so he has better propagation, and I do have it worked, so I guess that's OK, but where are the QSLs?"

This was one we weren't ready to answer so we did a side-step and simply said, "If they don't count it doesn't matter, does it?" The QRPer looked at us for a moment, then replied. "I guess not. But that brings us to the real question! Why doesn't it count? Why hasn't the league accepted it? You guys who claim to be True-Blue DXers should know these things!", he said, raising his voice and glaring at us with is beady little eyes. "What's the hold up, Buster?!"

At this point we did the only thing we could do. We took the QRPer up the hill to see the Old Timer. He got right to the point and said, "Why doesn't the 5A1A operation count for DXCC?" The Old Timer didn't even turn from tuning his rig. "Because the DXCC desk says it doesn't. And when they say it does, it will." And, with that, he checked in with W2MIG and joined the morning get together on 20-metres. It was clear this was all he was going to say. So we walked back down the hill with the QRPer. "What kind of answer was that?", he asked us. We looked at the QRPer for a moment and said. "Just about the way it is. It one of the Inevitable Truths of DXing. When you understand this, you will know the meaning of DX IS! and become one of the Deserving."

The QRPer looked at us for a moment, then shrugged and walked off, clearly more confused that when he'd dropped by an hour ago. What could we do? There are some who are slow at grasping the true meaning of DX IS! and there are those who never gain full enlightenment. It was hard to tell where this QRPer stood on the road to true understanding. So we went back to the shack and dug out our BS7H QSL again. Somehow it looked even bigger and brighter than before and we were sure Martti was standing in a different spot that he had been an hour ago. Maybe Stephen King is a HAM . . . and maybe he was part of the BS7H team! DX IS!

Best Regards, Paul

Return to DX Story Page
Go to K2CD's Main Page

Back to GeoCities Cape Canaveral