Why contest? (Because and why not don't count)

pescatore_jt%ncsd.dnet at gte.com pescatore_jt%ncsd.dnet at gte.com
Thu Nov 19 15:26:15 EST 1992

I contest because it is usually fun. So, I guess the question is why do I find
contesting fun? Mainly because it involves skill and I can work at it and
improve, and I can measure my improvement. I can pick a target, maybe last
year's SS score or beating KE3Q in the Sprint or beating the N2RM 40 M
operator, and see how I do. The fun is doing better than I did last time. And,
yes, I do enjoy those rare occasions where I do better than others. Competition
is fun - unless it becomes the end-all.

My favorite contests are the Sprints and Field Day. The Sprints are amazingly
consistent benchmarks for improvement and are certainly competitive. FD is
almost devoid of the competitive aspects, but has all the other things that
make contesting fun: high rates, strategy decisions, antenna choices - all take
skills that you can build and hone. 

These are also contests that, at this stage in my life, I can fit into the
demands of my job and a growing family, so I guess my definition of fun is
changing. Playing with my two year old daughter is often more fun than a 110
hour on 15 CW; sometimes it is about as much fun as running VE's on 40M SSB!

It is only a hobby, and if it ain't fun don't do it. I may never win one of the
major DX contests (although listening to this net, since I'm on the east coast
I ought to be able to break the top ten with a wet noodle!) but it is still fun
to beat last year's score or to work all zones in one weekend. Comparing
pee-pee sizes through Dr. DX contests can  be a different type of fun but it
doesn't have much relation to ham radio.


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