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Handango Inc.

KBiFF: Yuma's Best Rock Radio Station
By: Alan Schneider  Published: 3/17/2011  Genre: Biography
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The most depressing thing about being stationed in Yuma back in the early 80’s was the lack of any real rock radio stations. There was only one, and it was run by a HAL 2000 like computer that held a whopping 40 songs in its memory bank. The local country stations had live DJ’s, but the rock and roll station, sadly, had a robot with a limited library.

Because I worked in an overly staffed section of the main technical building, there was a lot of downtime. At any given moment about half of the technicians would be working, the other half would be talking, playing cards, or making meal runs for the ones that were working. Often times I would slither out of our section, work my way down the hall, and visit my friend Biff. He was the sole technician manning our micro-soldering station. For those that are unfamiliar with the breakdown of military electronic shops, a micro-soldering station is where very small, detailed soldering jobs were performed. It takes a lot of skill, which was one reason he was exiled there. Not only was Biff good at it, he didn’t mind working totally alone, in fact he preferred it. He was not what you would call a ‘people person’, yet somehow he and I became friends. We would sit for hours and wax philosophic about various gripes and complaints we had while Biff soldered numerous components onto whatever circuit board needed servicing.

After a couple of weeks of doing nothing in my home shop, I asked our supervisor if I could move to the micro soldering station for a couple of weeks. I told him that Biff was a little inundated with items to work on and that he could use the help. Since I wasn’t necessarily his favorite person in the shop, he thought it was a wonderful idea. I packed up a few items from my workstation, which sadly consisted of a pack of cigarettes and my car keys, and made my way to Biff’s area.

One of the benefits to Biff’s work area was that he had an immense amount of test equipment surrounding him. Some of it was needed to test the components he repaired, but most was just placed on the shelf because the owning shop had no need for it and his area was the unofficial dumping ground for unused equipment. It was an electronic geeks dream. We would periodically plug in various devices just to learn how to use them or see what they did in fact do.

One day we were lamenting the fact that the only rock and roll radio station in town was a laughable disgrace. We talked about how we would run a station and eventually take over all of Yuma’s airways. Biff, being an electronic genius, started listing the components needed to transmit an FM signal over a reasonable distance. With every item he listed, I scanned the upper shelf of the work area and found the corresponding unit. When his list was done, he realized that he probably had that equipment on the shelf, and when he looked at me I smiled and nodded indicating we were thinking the same thing. I ran back to my dorm and got my boom box while Biff prepped the frequency generator, amplifier, and signal input module. We hooked the various components together and selected a nice, unused frequency, which wasn’t hard in Yuma. I scraped away a significant portion of paint layers that protected a steel beam going all the way into the ceiling and secured the antennae. We flipped the switches and heard noise coming through our test radio receiver. Around 3pm on a sunny Yuma day, K-BiFF began its inaugural broadcast with a commercial free playing of Journey’s Escape album.

I don’t mean to imply that K-BiFF was a full blown station. We would simply load cassettes into the dual tape holders of the boom box and press the play button. It gave us about three hours of airplay which allowed us to continue listening to that day’s selections while driving our modified van to do pick up and deliveries. Our FM radio blasted K-BiFF the entire ride and we would leave it booming while running in and out of various hangars and buildings. When a couple of people asked what we were listening to, we said, “99.9. It’s a new station and it’s awesome!” We were slowly gaining an audience.

Since Biff and I worked a modified split shift, we were able to keep the station running from 6am to 6pm, Monday through Friday. While Biff was getting ready in the morning, he could listen to what I was playing, and when I got back the dorm in the mid afternoon, I could unwind with his selections. Some nights he would forget to turn the equipment off and the tapes would loop until we changed them the next morning. Biff even brought in a microphone one day and, when bored, would act as DJ when changing tapes. After our first week, we were quite proud of our little station, but we didn’t dare tell anyone in the building what we were doing.

One Monday afternoon, I went to the break room to get my last cup of coffee before leaving and noticed the Master Sergeant in charge talking to a Lieutenant, both of them actively stirring their brew. I apparently walked in during the middle of their conversation.

“I love that station,” said the Master Sergeant, “they play whole albums without any commercials! Sometimes they are off the air, but the stuff they play is awesome. This morning they played the entire Led Zeppelin 4 album. I love that song Kashmir

You’re welcome,” I thought to myself.

 “But once I get to around the front gate, I lose reception. I wish I could get that station on the road or at home, but I don’t know if there’s a problem with their signal or something wrong with my truck.”

I smirked with pride thinking our little bootleg radio station was becoming a hit with the higher ups in the unit. I nearly dislocated my shoulder patting myself on the back. Then came the scary part, “I got a friend that works in the tower,” he continued, “and I was going to have a chat with him and see how I might be able to get that station outside of the base.”

Uh-oh,” I thought, “He’s going to involve the communication heavies to solve his truck’s entertainment woes, and if they catch our frequency, we’re toast.” Our little station was a good distance from the tower and any other communication hubs around the base. Our innocent little signal only permeated a few hundred yards around our own building. The distance from our building to the main gate was just over that, which is why the signal seemed to end when you reached the perimeter of the base.

I scurried out of the room and ran toward our work area, sloshing coffee onto the ground with each step. “Biff! Top Carleton’s going to have some guys in the tower figure out why he can’t get our station while driving off base!”

Biff looked confused, but when I informed him of the full conversation that took place a few minutes prior, he understood the seriousness of the situation. We knew we had to shut it down, but we didn’t want to just unplug our equipment, we wanted to go out in style. Since it was late in the day and our Master Sergeant was about to leave, we figured we’d use this opportunity to thank our best listener and send our station off with a bang.

I went to my original shop to “pal around” with the guys there so I could keep an eye on his office, whose entrance was tucked away in one of the corners of the shop floor.  When he left, I ran back to our station. We looked at the tape and Biff determined it was about over. We waited a few minutes to make sure our Master Sergeant was just in the parking lot getting in his car. As soon as the song that was playing ended, I hit the stop button and Biff grabbed the microphone.

“I’m sorry folks for having to cut your enjoyment of Rush’s Limelight album, but I’m afraid I have some bad news. Because of some communication restrictions levied around MCAS Yuma, K-BiFF is signing off for good this evening. It’s been a great run and we’d like to thank you for listening. Before we go off the air, though, we’d like to thank our favorite listener, Master Sergeant Carleton! A couple of your men called and said you were our biggest fan, and we sincerely thank you for that. And to show our appreciation, we’re going to close with a song from your favorite album, Led Zeppelin 4.”

And so, as quickly as it started, it ended. The short but glorious reign of K-BiFF as the undisputed king of Yuma rock radio, was no more. We played Kashmir for Top Carleton, knowing that at that time, somewhere near the front gate of MCAS Yuma, sat a late 70’s Chevy pickup, pulled off to the side of the road with a teary eyed marine listening sadly to his favorite song.

 
The above story was written by Alan Schneider
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Sara Bear - By Paul Sharp Fiction - Westerns
View Alan Schneider's bio page

The story of Sara Bear takes you on an in depth and intriguing journey full of action, mystery, murder, and adventure. It is the story of a young woman raised by Indians in the American wilderness of the 1840's. She escapes her violent husband and tries making her way east.

Shortly after her journey begins, she comes across the remains of a hostile attack against a family's wagon. As the father lay dying, he asks Sara to help his four children make it to safety. Sara reluctantly agrees and the children soon learn that without her help, they would be lost for sure.

After another attack on their party, Sara begins to think there is something suspicious about the children's situation. Finally the travelers arrive at an outpost, but Sara learns that they are unable to help. They do, however, offer to escort her to the railhead where she can get passage to Philadelphia for her and her party. Once there, Sara is hoping to reunite the children with the relatives of the slain parents, thus fulfilling her promise.

Sara soon finds that her life becomes intertwined with her newly adopted family as she uncovers a string of events involving the children's parents, their relatives in Philadelphia, and a pair of foreign assassins. Sara and the children return to the western wilderness new members from Philadelphia where they establish a ranch and begin work on making a new life for themselves. However, the trouble does not end there as hired Comanchero's are still on the lookout for the children and other family members.

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Extraordinary - By Paul Sharp Fiction - Crime, Mystery
View Alan Schneider's bio page

When Jubal Slade moved his family to Texas and tried to enroll his children in the local school system, they discovered something amazing. The boys had wanted to play sports in High School, but the demands and restrictions of local coaches allowed for only one option for his children, Oatman High School.

His daughter, a gifted and extraordinary young girl, discovered that Oatman's lowly status among the community's schools went way beyond the sports programs. Could the discovery of cameras and recorders at the children's new school be tied to their recent move or their mother's research work?

The family, along with their FBI appointed protector Wiley, uncover corruption and cover-up while helping rebuild Oatman's disheveled football program into a winner!

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Storage Unit Auction Riches Business
View Alan Schneider's bio page

We show you how to make COLD HARD CASH buying other people's abandoned items for PENNIES ON THE DOLLAR!

Do you dream of running your own business and being self employed? Well, running a storage unit auction business is an easy, inexpensive, and fun way to do just that! There are no franchise fees, no monthly dues, no overhead, and very little operating costs. This is still a largely untapped market. Quite a few people attend these auctions but only a select few actually bid on the units! Why is that? It's because they want to get into the Storage Unit Auction business but they have a fear of doing it WRONG! They do not know the flow of the operation or what is to be expected!

That's why this eBook can help! Most people think all it takes is to walk into an auction, buy a unit, and become rich. That's the number one mistake newcomers make! Even if they do win, they most likely overbid and end up with a room full of junk! But our recommendations and worksheets make your entry into this lucrative business as easy as possible.

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