W8NUTS (The Squirrel) reports from the House of Pain. On a beautiful sunny day in the land of Michigan, Hop is summoned by a fellow Ham for assistance with setting up his 2 meter Echolink Node. Hop jumps at the opportunity to help said fellow Ham get his node up and running, as fellow ham has been pleading for assistance for some time. And it must be clearly stated that Fellow Ham has been warned by the local hams familiar with the House of Pain to “do it yourself”, you will be happier when all is said and done, we mean it, really,,, you really should consider doing it without Hops assistance. Fellow Ham anxious to get his node online ignores the wisdom of the other hams and invites Hop over with glee.
Hop overjoyed with this opportunity to help, packs up his gear and races over to fellow hams QTH in his speeder. It is a cool day so Hop opens his windows to enjoy the fresh spring air and to let out any residual smoke he may inadvertently be carrying with him, as this smoke is particularly tenacious, all the while operating as a 2 meter mobile station because of the 70 cm one hour smoke incident. Hop roars into the drive of fellow hams QTH, jumps out of his speeder and being a conscientious and courteous fellow, flaps his jacket just to make sure no smoke has come along.
Hop enters fellow hams shack confident of his abilities to have things working in a snap. Announcing over the radio, “be running pretty soon” local hams wait pensively for any smoke signals to be seen in the distance. Fellow ham and Hop share a few suds while Hop quickly enters keyboard commands, Run, Cmd, Ipconfig, reinstall drivers, update drivers, etc. A few hours pass and a few more suds expended, Hop then exclaims “I’ll need to take your computer and your equipment back to my shack, it is there, where I can best perform my work!” Fellow ham feels a large lump in his throat and begins to sweat remembering the admonitions of the local hams who know Hop best. But, anxious to have his node working agrees with hops plan. As Hop gathers up the equipment and leaves, fellow ham gazes out the door and wonders if he will ever see his equipment in working condition again. Hop carefully loads the computer, no mic, radio and accessories in his speeder and heads back to his shack, getting on two meter and giving local hams an update as to the situation. Hop is a little disappointed that he couldn’t get it going the first time but feels good and even boasts a little that it just needs a little tweaking.
Now, W8NUTS has been monitoring the entire time and races around as only a Squirrel can do, opening windows and doors in Hops shack attempting to clear out any remnants of the infamous smoke of dead electronics, just in time for Hop to arrive! Hop noticing the aired out shack and seeing W8NUTS breathing heavily after his labors, acknowledges W8NUTS with a thanks and a 73.
Back in his shack Hop labors with full intent, connecting the system to his network updating and tweaking and woolah it works! Hop immediately gets on the radio and boasts of his success, the local hams congratulate Hop and look forward to another Echolink station joining the growing group. Everyone breathes a sigh of relief; it seems that W8NUTS labors have paid off.
The next day Hop with bloated chest returns to fellow hams QTH, “everything is working, “let’s hook her up” but to hops dismay there is no internet connection as Hop had used a cat5 cable and fellow ham uses wireless, so once again Hop eagerly returns to his shack with everything, to tweak some more. W8NUTS perched on the antenna pole is scratching his head and wondering what happened? I aired out the shack he thought to himself, looks like I’m going to have to do this myself. Hop tired and a little dismayed says to the YL “lets go get some dinner out” YL says that’s a great idea Hop, how was your day, I didn’t see any smoke and the fire extinguishers appear unused so it must have gone well, lets go out.
W8NUTS sees this as his opportunity, thus entering the House of pain; he knows the texture of his fur makes him immune to electronic smoke. W8NUTS quickly installs the proper drivers and has everything working by the time Hop gets back. Hop is amazed that the system has fixed itself and even wondered if the House of Pain has a Magic Smoke that can fix things as well. After a while his YL comes to the door and says lets retire for the evening, Hop with a roll of duct tape in hand rushes over, pulls the YL into the shack, and closes the door. YL says what’s up? Hop states that he doesn’t want to let out this new magic smoke and has been taping up all the cracks to keep it in! YL then says, really Hop, Magic Smoke, you know you really need to upgrade your license to Extra and stop all this crazy talk……