DX Stories by Paul M. Dunphy, VE1DX

The Meaning of DX IS! (Maybe)

One of the Local QRPers was up the hill the other day, this one looking for enlightenment. "I've been through almost a full solar cycle", he said, "and I've worked a lot of DX. I've got almost 200 countries worked. Now that we're at the bottom of the cycle, I'm concentrating on the lower bands. Even with all this on-air experience, I'm still not sure of the true meaning of DX IS! Just when I think I understand it, one of the Big Guns mentions the Eternal Enigmas or the Mysteries of the Ages and I don't follow." We were properly sympathetic, for full understanding does not come quickly. We decided to take the QRPer up to see the Old Timer.

The Old Timer listened to the QRPer's questions patiently and then replied, "The true meaning of DX IS! is not always clear to the uninitiated", he replied, "and usually it comes in revelations, or levels of understanding. You've got to approach each level with an open mind." The QRPer thought for a bit, then replied, "That's what I do," he replied, "I grasp the true meaning of DX IS! and I'm pretty sure I've become one of the Deserving. Then along comes a DXpedition that I miss and when I ask the Big Guns what I did wrong in the pileups, they just tell me I'm not a Believer. They say that unless I'm a Believer I won't become one of the Deserving . . . and that only the Deserving will work the DX. What am I doing wrong?"

"Nothing", replied the Old Timer, "nothing at all." When you miss a DX station, it is a good thing! It is a sign that you have reached the top of your level of understanding. You are missing the DX because you are ready to grasp another one of the Eternal Enigmas, or you're just about to understood another Mystery of the Ages. You should be glad that you are missing the DX . . . it is a sign, that for you, The Great Days of DXing are near. As the Hero of Mafeking will tell you: "Be prepared! The signs are everywhere! You've got to become a Believer!"

The QRPer began to glare at the Old Timer with his beady little eyes. "So what you are telling me is that the more DX I miss, the better off I am. That I will become a true blue DXer and understand everything if I miss them all!" The QRPer drew himself up to his full five and a half feet and stared at the Old Timer. "None of this makes any sense!", he snarled, "And if I listen to you, I won't ever work any DX." And with that, he was off down the hill, convinced that there were no answers and that he would never understand the true meaning of DX IS!

We looked over at the Old Timer. "What do you make of that?", we asked. The Old Timer was quick to reply, "There is a great difference between knowing and understanding; you can know a lot about something and not really understand it. The QRPer knows the meaning of DX IS! and is on the verge of enlightenment, but he won't let himself become a Believer." Son of a Gun! We had never thought of it this way before. When the Old Timer speaks, it is like fireworks in July! The Great Days of DXing are near. The signs are everywhere. Be prepared! Be a Believer! DX IS!

Best Regards, Paul

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