By Bill Carroll, KC9CIK
There I was sitting down grabbing my Guns & Ammo magazine to read their take on my Beretta PX4, as a concealed carry firearm, when I was struck in the face on how diverse our hobby is. I had the 2017 Guns & Ammo Annual and started flipping through it to find the write up on my favorite handgun. Not even bothering to use the index (that would be too close to reading the directions), when I got slapped. There was a picture of the great and powerful Hiram Percy Maxim on page 56! By the way, the PX4 Storm is on page 28, if you are interested.
Back to Mr. Maxim, there were eight pages on the life and times of Hiram Percy Maxim, …
at least how they related to Guns & Ammo. It turns out that Maxim was not just some great amateur radio operator. He had not only a double life, but a triple, QUADRUPLE life. The great and powerful Maxim had built a gasoline-powered tricycle in 1895, received three automotive patents, one electric vehicle patent, two silencer patents (Guns & Ammo liked this), started the Amateur Cinema League, and oh yea, started the American Radio Relay League in April of 1914. What a guy!
While looking at the diversity of this individual, I then started realizing that we still have this same diversity in the ARRL and amateur radio. I have met all sorts of people in this hobby: surgeons, lawyers, nurses, teachers, preachers, salesmen, and the list just keeps going.. I have met people with hobbies other than amateur radio, such as balloonists, geocachers, rocketry, search and rescue, and of course more upon more interests.
We are a group of individuals that are more diverse than the huge companies that pride themselves on diversity. We are Republicans, Democrats, and Tea Partiers. We are racially diverse. We are individuals with a common interest in being involved with amateur radio. We even do this with these different people, and get along pretty well. I am proud to have so many friends in amateur radio that I now realize I know very little about.
I know how to find out though. It is time to get more involved on our repeaters, and have more QSO’s with each other to learn how widespread our diversity really is. I look forward to learning more about my fellow hams and their lives, and yes, quirks.