What do you present yourself as – a ham radio operator, a ham or a radio amateur? I most definitely do not feel like a ham radio operator.
To me this hobby is all about continuously acquiring knowledge, learning, creating and trying things I haven`t done before. Actually operating the equipment is probably what I do least. An operator operates, and operating requires little if any technical knowledge. Operating a radio station is just like driving a car: It doesn`t take much technical know-how to get the thing moving, although it may be handy or even get you further.
Perhaps the term radio amateur makes it sound like I`m an “amateur” figuratively speaking, but in its original meaning (amore) it makes so much more sense: To be passionate about radio.
I do occasionally operate a few ham radios. But I am not a ham radio operator. I am a radio amateur.