By WBØRUR, on the scene
PFLUGERVILLE, Ky.; January 25, 2013 – A local ham radio operator says he's "depressed as heck" now that the ARRL’s November sweepstakes is over.
Randy Blackwood of rural Greene County, Kentucky, says he looks forward to the annual event like a kid looks forward to Christmas. "It’s the high point of my ham radio activity for the year," says the 39-year-old school teacher and father of two.
"Last weekend, I got on 20 meters and called ‘CQ Sweepstakes’ just so people would call me back and tell me the contest was over," he sighed dejectedly.
Organizers of other contests have reached out to Blackstone in an attempt to console and interest him in different operating activities, but with little luck.
"I called him personally and tried to get him to participate in our state QSO party," says Jack Campbell, who manages the Rhode Island QSO party. "No dice. He kept asking me for a serial number and precedence."
Blackwood pauses as he sips a drink of coffee from his "clean sweep" mug.
"I’m even more depressed when I think about HOW LONG IT TAKES TO GET THE SWEEPSTAKES RESULTS IN THIS DAY AND AGE OF COMPUTERS! WHAT THE HECK DO THEY TABULATE RESULTS ON?! AN ABACUS?!"
He adds that he is "somewhat" looking forward to the "CQ WW DX Contest" later this year.