Listen to Latest SolderSmoke Podcast

Sunday, December 5, 2010

More QRPoetry from AA1TJ

This is actually prose, not verse, but it has a poetic element to it. It is not for nothing that we have called Michael "the poet laureate of QRP." Must be all that time up on the mountain. Whatever the motivation, we're always happy to get his messages, and we always find inspiration in them:

On the topic of QRP power levels; for me it all stems from the pair of "100mW" walkie-talkies that my brother and I found under the Christmas tree one year. I thought it was magical that we could walk around the neighborhood and still talk to each other. Then one day my friend and I was messing around and I heard some lady's (CBer) voice all of a sudden. It took a moment to figure out that she was talking to me (my first and last CB QSO). We only talked for a few moments but it left me wondering how far it might be possible to communicate with such low power. The electronics magazines I was just starting to read showed massive boat-anchor transmitters; none of which appealed to me. For me the excitement was trying to see how far I could talk with my MPF102 oscillator on 40m; and later, a similar xmtr made from a surplus 2N697 that I happened upon. It was around that time I first heard about tunnel diodes; exotic devices based upon the (still) mystical notion of quantum tunnelling. Of course, I dreamed about building a tunnel diode rig...a dream that would take 35 years to realize...to which I owe a huge debt to Seab, AA1MY...dunno if he knows to this day how big of a deal it was for me; which is why I was especially happy to see his, "with childlike joy and wonder" comment. Ditto for me. Speaking of which, last I showed my wife, N4KGL/p's QTH on the map located on his site "Nov 23rd Lunch Time QRP". http://www.n4kgl.info/ We thought it was fun to progressively zoom out from the parking lot where he was operating yesterday. Right away the Gulf of Mexico appears. Of course, Vermont eventually comes into view. Scientific American that did a similar series of zooms in a book some years ago. It began with a couple lying on a blanket in a park. Some pages later you're staring back at this "pale blue dot" (to steal Carl Sagan's wonderful phrase). Something else comes to mind from Tom Wolfe's, The Right Stuff. Do you recall the passage where Lovell covers the Earth with his thumb? "At one point I sighted the earth with my thumb—and my thumb from that distance fit over the entire planet. I realized how insignificant we all are if everything I'd ever known is behind my thumb. But at that moment I don't think the three of us understood the lasting significance of what we were looking at." Dunno why, but QRPp feels a bit like Lovell's thumb. It gives me the same sense of vertigo displacement; a tiny signal sent from a tiny man located in a vast, oceanic, Universe. I remember saying so to my pal, Jim, W1PID, only last year in connection to my voice-powered CW transmitter. Hearing the dits and dahs return yesterday...looking at my puny transmitter...Wisconsin, Florida, Guadeloupe Island; bouncing these little ripples off the ionosphere...hearing the friendly replies...who would not be overwhelmed by the thought of it all? These little radios are just the launchers; pinkie fingers dabbed in the cosmic pool of Being. The Argentinian writer, Antonio Porchia, said, "Beyond my body my veins are invisible." Jim Lovell's veins radiated from beneath the thumb he so casually dabbed over the Earth. His veins radiated not just back to far away Earth - to everything that he loved - but in all directions; to places he'd never even dreamed of. I'd better sign now. I'm headed up to the mountain-top TV transmitter in a couple of hours... That's how it is here, Steve; QRO pays the bills, QRPp gives the thrills. :o) BTW, Dave, K1SWL, has already given a big thumbs-up to our RockMite contact! 73/72, Mike, AA1TJ

No comments:

Post a Comment

Designer: Douglas Bowman | Dimodifikasi oleh Abdul Munir Original Posting Rounders 3 Column