I have a new, bright, and shiny callsign!
When I made the decision back in 2013 to stay in Kansas after retiring from the military, I decided I would try to get a callsign for zero-land (or ten-land, if you like). It was time to leave my 7-land callsign and fully embrace being a citizen of the sunflower state. NI0L was available and I applied for it without much thought. After having the callsign for a while, I noticed many hams were confused with the 2×1 call. The most common mistake was flip flopping the zero and the “i”. Another common mistake was interpreting the “i” as one and then the zero would become an “o” (N1OL). All very confusing.
The hunt for a new callsign was on. I determined that a new callsign would still be from zero-land, thus greatly reducing the pool of available calls. In an effort to avoid callsign confusion, I further resolved that the call would be a 1×2 call. The good news was that the vanity callsign fee was no more. The bad news was that everybody and their brother was applying for vanity calls. For the last few months I kept at it – watching which calls became available and then submitting applications. Waiting. The odds where never in my favor. Often there would be 10 or twelve applying, all in competition.
Perseverance finally paid off. Last week the FCC said that I was now the proud holder of N0ZB. It is a 1×2 call, that should alleviate some confusion. The “zero” and the “zulu” may prove to be a bit of a tongue twister, but I think it will be far less of an issue and having the “zero” and an “i” next to one another.