Sunday, October 7, 2007

Hello CQ

When I was a kid, my dad was an avid ham radio operator, using the call letters W3UHO, as all ham radio people did, he used the code name Uncle Henry Oboe. So when he wanted to troll the air waves for someone to talk to he would broadcast "Hello CQ, This is W3UHO Uncle Henry Oboe," until he got a hit and someone would answer him.

Then they would talk about the weather and what kind of ham equipment they had and where they lived and where they had served in WWII the big one, and then say goodbye. He talked to people all over the place in his little basement studio with the walls lined with asbestos squares of sound proofing poison.

I used to sit and listen and wish I were old enough to get my own ham radio license, but hey, I was a girl, and in the 1950s ham radio was a man's sport. A few years later, my mother, in a rare feminist action, got herself certified as a ham radio hobbyist herself. Probably just to prove a point, as I don't recall her ever sitting down there in the studio talking to people on the air herself without my dad present.

My mother's call letters I cannot remember correctly, but her code name was Gruesome Toothless Babe, so GTB had to be in there.

So, here I sit, in 2007 at the age of 60, broadcasting the modern way of saying "Hello CQ!"

Welcome to my world.

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