THE SPARK GAP A monthly publication of the Meridian Amateur Radio Club March 1998
President: Dennis KI5FW
Vice Pres: C.P. W5OQY
Secretary: Bill KB5ASR
Treasurer: Ross WB4ZIK
Editor : Darrell W5MAV
Club meets every Saturday 10 A.M. at Queen City Truck Stop. All visitors and new members are welcome. Some folks come early for breakfast.
G.E. ALL: As I write this column it is raining outside and has been all day. With all these showers we should have lots of May flowers.
I would like to thank Phillip (KD5CBK) and Ross (Romeo, Oscar, Sierra, Sierra - WB4ZIK ) for the work and effort put into the club T-Shirt project. These will be gud looking t's that everyone will be proud to wear. Everybody should want 2 or more of these to wear around. Get every family member one to wear, the OM, the XYL's and even the little HARMONICS. Job well done guys.....
The March meeting on the 7th went real well. Wish we had a few more to show but the weather probably contributed to that.
Mel (N5JCG/CA) talked to us about working with the LEMA group here in Lauderdale Cty. Eddie Ivey wants the local HAMS to work closer with LEMA and help in weather spotting and other situations. We really all should respond to this request and become more active on the repeater when threatening weather approaches and passes through our area. Everyone that would like to be active in this weather related net should contact Mel so that he can tell Eddie that we have a large group willing to help and respond. I know the way we all work and such, it is hard to make a commitment to be responsive at all times but we all can commit to helping as our time frame will allow....... Hope everyone has a safe and dry month of March. Spring and the HEAT is just around the corner........73's...........de DENNIS......KI5FW..................
Vice President Report:
Hope everyone had a good month. Looking good down at Plant Sweat. I'm tired of cold weather, rain, and storms. Guess the bad weather is yet to come. A few of us attended a Tornado spotter training class. Hope we don't have to use our knowledge now. March has started off wet and cold. Guess spring will be late. Maybe it will help with the bad weather season. Hope we all have a great Spring and Happy Hamming. 73's to all. W5OQY CP - VP
I received a message from Ross (Romeo, Oscar, Sierra, Sierra - WB4ZIK) and Phillip (KD5CBK) that the Tee-Shirts are ready. I also want to thank them both for their efforts put forth in getting this project tied down. The graphics are great, and the shirts will look splendid. Please use the form on the back page of your newsletter to place your orders. A sneak peek of the finalized graphics is also enclosed on the back of your newsletter. Of course the real thing is considerably larger. 73's W5MAV
ATTITUDE IS EVERYTHING
Jerry was the kind of guy you love to hate. He was always in a good mood and always had something positive to say. When someone would ask him how he was doing, he would reply, "If I were any better, I would be twins!"
He was a unique manager because he had several waiters who had followed him around from restaurant to restaurant. The reason the waiters followed Jerry was because of his attitude. He was a natural motivator. If an employee was having a bad day, Jerry was there telling the employee how to look on the positive side of the situation.
Seeing this style really made me curious, so one day I went up to Jerry and asked him, "I don't get it! You can't be a positive person all of the time. How do you do it?"
Jerry replied, "Each morning I wake up and say to myself, 'Jerry, you have two choices today. You can choose to be in a good mood or you can choose to be in a bad mood.' I choose to be in a good mood. Each time something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or I can choose to learn from it. I choose to learn from it. Every time someone comes to me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or I can point out the positive side of life. I choose the positive side of life."
"Yeah, right, it's not that easy," I protested.
"Yes, it is," Jerry said. "Life is all about choices. When you cut away all the junk, every situation is a choice. You choose how you react to situations. You choose how people will affect your mood. You choose to be in a good mood or bad mood. The bottom line: It's your choice how you live life."
I reflected on what Jerry said. Soon thereafter, I left the restaurant industry to start my own business. We lost touch, but I often thought about him when I made a choice about life instead of reacting to it.
Several years later, I heard that Jerry did something you are never supposed to do in a restaurant business: he left the back door open one morning and was held up at gunpoint by three armed robbers. While trying to open the safe, his hand, shaking from nervousness, slipped off the combination. The robbers panicked and shot him. Luckily, Jerry was found relatively quickly and rushed to the local trauma center.
After 18 hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care, Jerry was released from the hospital with fragments of the bullets still in his body.
I saw Jerry about six months after the accident. When I asked him how he was, he replied, "If I were any better, I'd be twins. Wanna see my scars?"
I declined to see his wounds, but did ask him what had gone through his mind as the robbery took place. "The first thing that went through my mind was that I should have locked the back door," Jerry replied. "Then, as I lay on the floor, I remembered that I had two choices: I could choose to live, or I could choose to die. I chose to live."
"Weren't you scared? Did you lose consciousness?" I asked.
Jerry continued, "The paramedics were great. They kept telling me I was going to be fine. But when they wheeled me into the emergency room and I saw the expressions on the faces of the doctors and nurses, I got really scared. In their eyes, I read, 'He's a dead man.'
"I knew I needed to take action."
"What did you do?" I asked.
"Well, there was a big, burly nurse shouting questions at me," said Jerry. "She asked if I was allergic to anything. 'Yes,' I replied. The doctors and nurses stopped working as they waited for my reply. I took a deep breathe and yelled, 'Bullets!' Over their laughter, I told them. "I am choosing to live. Operate on me as if I am alive, not dead."
Jerry lived thanks not only to the skill of his doctors, but also because of his amazing attitude. I learned from him that everyday we have the choice to live fully. Attitude, after all, is everything.
By: Francie Baltazar-Schwartz
Words of Wisdom
You can fail at many things, but you're not a failure until you stop trying.
Before you speak, Listen.
Before you write, Think.
Before you pray, Forgive.
Before you quit, Try.
VICE DIRECTOR'S NOTES
A new and revised edition of "Now You Are Talking" has just been released from the printer. There is an entire chapter devoted to the Morse code. What the book doesn't have is a visual representation of the code, because the code is best learned by aural, not visual means. That is is explained in the third paragraph of the chapter. A new "RF Exposure and You' by Ed Hare, W1RFI has just been released from the printer. This book answers many questions that most amateur radio will ask. Some of these questions are: (a) What are the FCC RF exposure regulations? (b) How do they apply to my station? (c) Is it hard to meet them? (d) Do I have to prepare paperwork for the FCC? (e) Do I have to lower my tower? (f) Are there any restrictions on using my H-T? The answers to these questions, and many more, are inside, with the FCC rules relating to amateur radio translated into plain English. As you know, when House Telecommunications Subcommittee Chairman Billy Tauzin's Wireless Privacy Enhancement Act of 1998 was marked up by the subcommittee in October, the committee incorporated all but one of ARRL's recommendations into the bill. The last remaining issue to be dealt with was to clarify the intent of section 2(a) with regard to the modification of linear amplifiers and other amateur gear. Last week, the full Commerce Committee marked up the bill with the intent of getting it on the floor of the House before Congress adjourns in October 1998. It is a good possibility that the bill will enter the floor on the week of March 9, 1998. NOTE: HR 2369, the Wireless Privacy Enhancement Act of 1998, has passed on the floor of the House by a vote of 414 to 1 with 15 members not voting. - I will be going to Hartford, CT. on July 17 - 18, 1998 for the ARRL Board of Directors meeting. I hope to see and talk to you'll at club meetings and hamfest.
73's Henry R. Leggette, WD4Q
Vice Director, Delta Division ARRL
New Mississippi SM: Mississippi has a new Section Manager. He's Malcolm Keown, W5XX, of Vicksburg. Keown was appointed to replace Ernest Orman, W5OXA, of Biloxi, who has stepped down. Orman had been SM since 1995.
FCC jumps the gun on call sign reissue: Ron Toller, N1RT, has learned that the FCC reissued his former call sign, WO4L, to a Florida man, less than 12 months after he gave it up in 1996. The FCC's vanity rules say call signs will be held out of the pool for two years before being reissued. Toller didn't find out until recently that the call sign had been reissued. He said a spokesman at the FCC's Gettysburg office blamed the premature release on "a computer glitch." The same individual told the ARRL that by the time the FCC discovered its error, it decided not to rescind the grant because of the number of licenses that had been granted by then and the amount of time that had passed before the problem was discovered. Toller's take on the turn of events? "If all the hams must obey the rules so should the FCC." He says he's petitioning to have the FCC vacate WO4L until the two-year period is up in November.
Another premature reissue: After reading about how the FCC reissued WO4L, the former call sign of Ron Toller, N1RT, just 11 months after he vacated it, Byron W. Engen, W0EBA, wrote to report that the FCC reissued his old call sign, WV8B, just 4-1/2 months after he gave it up in June 1996. "I have wondered how many QSLs [the new holder] has gotten as result--I had a lot outstanding," Engen said.
ASTEROID NAMED AFTER NEW MEXICO HAM
In addition to his interest in ham radio, Warren Offutt, AF9Q, of Cloudcroft, New Mexico, has a deep interest in astronomy and gained considerable renown as an amateur stargazer. Now, his name is up in lights--in a manner of speaking--in the form of an asteroid some 350-million miles from Earth. After retiring from an engineering career, Offutt and his wife, Beverly, N9JVN, moved from Illinois and set up a research observatory in the Sacramento Mountains of south-central New Mexico. They specialize in precision astronomy of faint solar system objects.
Offutt says he learned just a few days before his 70th birthday (on February 13, 1998) that the International Astronomical Union was naming Minor Planet (7639) in honor of his scientific contributions. The asteroid now will be known formally as Minor Planet (7639) Offutt. Estimated to be several miles in diameter, it orbits the sun in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter.
"I've thought about setting up a repeater on (7639) Offutt, but the technical challenges seem formidable," Offutt joked.
Bestowing the honor of naming the asteroid in Offutt's honor was the IAU's Brian Marsden, who first spotted the asteroid in 1985 at Harvard. Over the past year, Offutt has helped in three major discoveries from his home observatory. He reports that his and his wife's confirming observations of one of the newly discovered moons of Uranus will appear in the British journal Nature "probably in late March."
Offutt--an ARRL member and licensed in 1943-says his 55 years of hamming "have been a wonderful experience. I still get a thrill out of each new contact." He and his wife have ten children. Three of them, plus one son-in-law, also are hams.
Have a great month
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