On a cold windy night somewhere on the lower east side of downtown Knights Landing DARCC was formed by two guys, a girl and some leftover pizza. Like a band of wandering gypsies they were seeking a home for their new repeater. Not just any repeater mind you, but a new, shiny, Icom repeater. A repeater like none ever heard before in the vast wasteland of the two-meter band. This repeater had style, elegance and separate control and RF decks. Did I mention it was new?

As most gypsies would do they first attempted to blend in by setting up their new machine on frequencies that were underutilized by the common folk in the neighborhood, frequencies that weren't normally used by repeaters. After all, this was not an ordinary repeater; in fact it might not even be a repeater at all. Hell, it only really transmitted ones and zeros in some sort of funky carrier modulation scheme. It even sounded like amplified white noise to most unskilled listeners. Would they be able to live peacefully occupying their new space? Would they be left alone to pursue the American dream? Would they have a cart for every horse, or was it a horse for every cart, can't remember. As luck, technology and local politics would have it, they would not.

As most gypsies learn, it is a cruel world out there, and that cruel world is governed by politicians and political groups. Even though they were not really bothering anyone and even though the band had grown to include non-gypsies, the government notified the gypsies that their new shiny Icom radio thing needed to be operated in the appropriate repeater sub-band as designated by some pseudo-governmental department titled with some three letter acronym. We like to call this notification the "Walks like a duck" notification. Some sort of ruling that was made by a beauracratic, political dude that probably never even tried to walk like a duck much less talked to one. Anyway, the gypsies, as always, were told to move along.

As we all know, gypsies don't give up easy. After all they had their cart and horse and their new shiny Icom digital retransmitting box thing with sphincter clenching technology and they were going to use it. By then the band had grown to such numbers that thought they could join in with the local pseudo-political group and convince the non-gypsy majority that they should be allowed to play with their new toys (did I mention that they were new and shiny). Maybe the locals would figure out how to accommodate this now larger band of wandering gypsies and welcome them into their community. Perhaps they would locate space for them to utilize their new, shiny, digital, funky modulated, kind of repeater thing. Of course, as we all know, this was not to be. Everyone knows that gypsies are not welcome in the mainstream community. Especially when they bring devices that baffle and scare the common folk.

So what where our gypsies to do? Would they give up, take their new, shiny, Icom box to the swap meet or trade it for a case of elixir or magic powder? Of course not, it's not so easy to part with something new and shiny. Maybe they could create their own pseudo-governmental, political-social group with some sort of steering committee that had some sort of influence in the local community. Maybe they could make everyone think seriously about how to treat a wandering band of non-conformist gypsy type individuals with new hardware. Maybe they could come up with ideas on how to fit in, locate some under used spectrum, some space that was not managed effectively. Knock out a wall in the pizza parlor in Knight's Landing and maybe even have a meeting or two. Invite other bands of wandering digital gypsies to participate, drink and transmit funky modulated white noise. Yah, that's the ticket....

So, the saga continues, the group was formed, the underutilized space was identified, the plan was put in place and the only thing left is to act on it. Don't be tricked into believing that those gypsies will go away. They never wander that far and eventually the band grows and so does shiny technology. I'd like to add that this group, this web site, these ideas and somewhat scattered and crazy statements are in no way affiliated with, endorsed by, or even liked by NCPA or NARCC. SHARKK thinks that they are ok but that's another story!