Hello people... Let me introduce Arnold. (Not his real name) Yes, I know what you're thinking. What does a pig have to do with amateur radio? Well, pigs and amateur radio operators are all hams. And hams who need an extra feeding of DX, whether they need it or not, are known as DX pigs. Arnold is not an ordinary porker, he's definitely a DX pig. As DXers, perhaps we all have a little DX pig in us, just some more than others. This is the story of how Arnold took DX Pigetry to a new level and changed his whole life forever.

Arnold didn't always look this way. He was once human and looked the same as you and I. He developed his present form much the same way as a tadpole develops into a frog by metamorphosis. What you are seeing here is a severe case of Oink Fever. Are you totally puzzled by now? Well read on.

When Arnold was young, he was interested in short-wave radio and became a short-wave listener. He later got his license and became a ham radio operator. Nothing wrong with that, it's a fascinating hobby, only Arnold became obsessed with DX. (Long distance radio contacts) At first, he was thrilled working Canada or the Caribbean. Then, he went on to work countries in Europe, Asia, Africa, and other regions of the world. The highlight of his days was when another QSL card appeared in his mailbox. Arnold's first big achievement was when he got the basic DXCC award. (100 countries)

As the years went by and Arnold's obsession grew, he was awarded DXCC #1 Honor Roll, DXCC on 11 bands and all modes, WAZ on 10 Bands and all modes, Satellite WAZ, WPX Award of Excellence, and every IOTA known. He had over 300 countries on each band, and had to have every country on every band and in every mode. Then, he had to have every country by base, mobile, and QRP while riding a bicycle. Once he had all this, he could still be heard in the pileups with his big gun station working rare DXpeditions on every band/mode and with dupes on each. He didn't need any more contacts, but had no control over his urge to work DX. His favorite past time was rag chewing with rare and simi-rare DX, hindering others a chance for a new one. Another favorite of his was getting the DX to move to another band, while many were waiting their turn.

If Arnold's call sign was revealed, everyone who's worked DX would immediately recognize him, so he wishes to remain anonymous. When he was making the transformation into a pig, it wasn't an overnight thing. It started with his face, when his nose became pig like and his ears grew larger and started to flop. He started putting on weight at an alarming rate. The transformation took about a year. During this process, Arnold went into seclusion, as he was embarrassed to be seen. This didn't bother him, because his only passion was to work DX, which he continued to do. Now that the process is complete, he no longer feels embarrassed, for he knows people only see him as a pig and a real ham.

When I approached Arnold today, he was at a trough that had just been filled with slop. When he spotted me with the radio, he immediately left the trough and ran over to me. In doing this, he knocked over two buckets of slop, and never looked back. His obsession to be heard on the radio is stronger than his urge to eat. Of course people can't understand his grunts and squeals, but it makes no difference to him. He just wants to be heard.

If you are a DXer and start to develop signs of pig transformation, I have good news and bad news. This disease is treatable in the early stages. People are starting to recognize this disorder, and there are support groups across the country to treat those in the pre-development and early stages of Oink Fever. Once a person enters the latter stages, there's no turning back. Research is underway at Johns Hopkins University, but they are far from a cure for this disease. They only know it is not inherited, there is no DNA connection, and that it is not contagious. Oink Fever is only acquired by radio operating practices. But if you are in the latter stages, there's many kind folks out there who will bring you a radio and a bucket of slop.

So if you happen by and see Arnold, or any DX pig, have a heart. Let them work some DX on your radio. And bring along something to eat. But whatever you do, don't let them see the radio first. If everyone did this, they would starve to death. Then again, if you don't already know it's a DX pig, the only way you can tell one from a regular pig, is to show them a radio. Oh well, what can I say?