June 1963 Popular Electronics
Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early electronics. See articles
published October 1954 - April 1985. All copyrights are hereby acknowledged.
Most amateur operators know
that "YL" is Hamese for "young lady," meaning a female operator. Less well known
these days is "XYL" which decades ago, referred to an ex-young lady, implying either
an older woman or the wife of a Ham. According to the FCC's Universal Licensing
System (ULS) online call sign lookup service, Popular Electronics' poet
K8AOU call sign is no longer assigned to anyone, so it's up for grabs. If there
is a YL out there wanting a notable call sign, this might be worthy of your consideration.
When I first posted this article in 2014 (it has been colorized and updated), the
call sign had been assigned to an OM ("old man;" i.e., male operator).
A Yell from an XYL
She had just received her General
So she got right on the air;
CQ'd and made a contact
Without a bit of care
The QSO was a good one
With signals loud and clear;
Not a sign of QRN
Or QRM to interfere.
Now you'd think she'd have been delighted
With a contact such as this;
The report that she was given would have
Filled any other ham with bliss.
But she stomped out of the ham shack
And announced that she was through;
"That man said I was FORTY OVER
But I'm only THIRTY TWO!"
Posted October 4, 2021(original