My CQ DX Award for confirming two-way communication with 100 countries on RTTY (radio teletype) arrived this week. I confess that I collect paper awards for making lots of ham radio contacts across lots of countries. I will place this award next to my CQ DX Award for CW (morse code) with 200 countries. I also have awards for DXCC in CW and RTTY. My next chase is VUCC — this time chasing grid squares on six meters.

I’m sure I’ve learned through some personality tests, and certainly through my life adventures, that I am achievement oriented. It probably began in my early years in Scouting. There I collected the usual ranks through Cub Scouting and Boy Scouting. Didn’t earn but six merit badges, as work got in my way at age 14. But the certificate chasing went on to include an FCC 1st Class Radiotelephone License, lots of certificates for home study course completion, and then moved into college degrees in my 30s and 40s. So now with all that done, I collect ham radio certificates.

This one was a long time coming. I earned it in January but the certificate didn’t show up until this week. I suspect some of that was due to the turbulence at CQ Magazine. This certificate also seemed important as it designates RTTY as the mode. The ARRL DXCC certificate will only attest to Digital these days. Which, of course, designates a large number of modes. I was a bit tickled that this is certificate #68. Not many of these issued over the years.

So yes, I’m Jim and I chase paper awards…

What do you think?