Yes, I know I’ve addressed this issue before, but I feel the need to do it again, so here goes.
What has happened to just sitting there, face to face, to discuss things rationally, succinctly and, more importantly, personally? Have we lost the art of communication?
I don’t know about the rest of you, but my search for a better way to talk to someone has taken me down a familiar path, one I’ve traveled before. And enjoyed I might add.
For those of you who don’t know, I used to be an amateur radio operator, or as some call it, ham radio operator. Yes, I was one of those who sit by the radio and try to find someone to talk to.
Granted, it’s not face to- face, but at least it’s direct communication. Anyway, back on point here. In 1995, I earned my technician license and got my first call sign N9ZUF. Yeah, I know it spells Zuf but, hey, at least it was mine.
And I had a lot of fun with it. I gradually learned Morse code and upgraded first to general class, then eventually to the top tier amateur extra. With that in hand, I communicated with someone in every state, several countries and the Arctic Circle, this time under the call sign AB9DT. For those ignorant to the ham service, the fewer letters in your call sign, the higher your class.
But, as time went by, I decided, for whatever reason, to give it up. What really hit me was how I wasn’t talking to anyone anymore. So after some deliberation, I took the time to study for the test I needed to get back into it.
I bought a hand-held radio and am in the midst of buying one for the car, but there’s a slight problem. The Federal Communications Commission is like every other federal agency, it’s shuttered till further notice.
What that simply means is regardless of my passing the test last weekend, regardless of me having the proper equipment to communicate, I can’t get my license until there’s someone there to process the paperwork.
Well, so much for being able to communicate that way, guess I’ll just have to find someone to sit down with and strike up a conversation.
I figure in order to do that, however, there are a few things I need to do. First, I need to text the person I want to talk to and see if they are available.
Then I need to send them an email or text reminding them of our upcoming meeting, hoping they put it on the calendar on their phone. Then hope they show up.
If they do, then we have to find something to talk about and hope their phone doesn’t ring or the text doesn’t beep.
The only thing I can say is Mr. President, hurry up and open the FCC. I need real conversation.
Rick Curl is a reporter with The Daily Record. He can be reached at 910-230-2037 or firstname.lastname@example.org.