John Hay

John Hay
Episode 123

Join host Japhet De Oliveira for a fascinating conversation with John Hay, Marketing and Communication Manager at Adventist Health Tillamook, about the fun of artificial intelligence, the importance of humor, and creating a monologue of your life.
Libsyn Podcast
"Working in healthcare had reframed my entire perspective on kindness that I did not have before...practicing the act of kindness is much more relevant to me now."

Narrator: Welcome friends to another episode of The Story & Experience podcast. Join your host, Japhet De Oliveira with his guest today and discover the moments that shape us, our families, and communities.

Japhet De Oliveira: Hey, welcome friends to another episode of The Story & Experience podcast. I'm delighted to be with this particular guest that I've known for quite a while and so this will be fun for us, Bill, to have a little bit of exchange here. If you're brand new to the podcast, we have 100 questions and they progressively become more vulnerable and open towards the end. They're questions really about stories and experience that shape this particular guest into the leader that they are today. So I'm going to ask the first 10 and then I'll hand over to them and they can choose numbers between 11 and 100 and let's begin with the first one. Could you tell us your name and does anybody ever mispronounce that by surprise?

John Hay: I remember this. I've listened to a lot of your podcasts and I always want to just kind of make up in my case. Yeah. Everybody mispronounces my name.

Japhet De Oliveira: Sure. Which is?

John Hay: They forget to pronounce the H in John. So it just get confusing. See? Okay. You got it.

Japhet De Oliveira: Your full name?

John Hay: My full name is John Hay.

Japhet De Oliveira: John Hay.

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: That was pretty hard to get that out of you, John.

John Hay: I know.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. Tell me, John, what do you actually do for work?

John Hay: Oh, okay. So I am a marketing and communications manager with a communications focus and it's a lot about informing our internal audiences, a lot of executive communication, but then also public communication. Both sides of it I really enjoy. This is like a dream job. This is the job I wanted when I was in college and I'm super happy to finally be here to do that.

Japhet De Oliveira: Hey, that's fantastic, man. Good. How long have you been doing this?

John Hay: Well, I started in 2021.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay.

John Hay: So here at Venice Health and before that I was also in healthcare for about four years.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. And you've been doing communication your entire life or?

John Hay: Yeah. In different forms.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah, yeah.

John Hay: Everything from being a video editor, video producer, I worked in marketing for a number of years, a lot of business communication there, and then got into healthcare.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. I've walked around the hospital with you as well and seen some of your work. It's really nice stuff. It's good stuff. Yeah. Yeah. I like the way you try and engage the associates in their stories and sharing. That's good.

John Hay: Yeah. You want to know how that all started?

Japhet De Oliveira: No, you tell.

John Hay: So in high school, I ran a campaign for being vice president of the student body. If you were to kind of compare the two, I did a lot of similar kind of signage, promoting myself as all of the significant people in history, but putting my face on it and putting a spin to it about running for vice president. And so that's kind of what got me in-

Japhet De Oliveira: Thinking about doing some kind of stuff like that.

John Hay: Yeah. Doing PR essentially. Yeah. So that's where I started, but everything I do, I try to make a little personal touch and make it feel engaging and something people would actually want to participate in and not just flat, "Here's your information."

Japhet De Oliveira: No, that's good.

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: So John, where were you born?

John Hay: I was born in The Dalles, Oregon.

Japhet De Oliveira: Really? Just down the road.

John Hay: Yeah. Just down the road. Yeah. We're in Tillamook. I also grew up on the coast with my grandparents.

Japhet De Oliveira: Oh really?

John Hay: During the summers and holidays and that kind of thing.

Japhet De Oliveira: Oregon coast.

John Hay: Yeah. I mean, most of my time growing up was in The Dalles.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. Fantastic. And then when you were a child, what did you imagine you would grow up to be?

John Hay: Well when I was young, so I grew up on a farm.

Japhet De Oliveira: Oh really?

John Hay: So there's a lot of equipment.

Japhet De Oliveira: Seven days a week.

John Hay: Well, yeah. I mean, I wasn't put to work as a child until I was 12 or so. Even then-

Japhet De Oliveira: Some would consider that still to be a child, but it's fine. It's fine.

John Hay: No, that's fair. Yeah. And it wasn't hard work, but yeah, it was farm life to an extent. So what I wanted to be, it usually involved something around Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles or Transformers. Yeah. That's kind of anything in that world I think I would've totally signed up for.

Japhet De Oliveira: You would've signed up to become a turtle.

John Hay: Yeah. Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: Michelangelo?

John Hay: Oh, Donatello for sure.

Japhet De Oliveira: Donatello. Okay.

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: All right. All right. Fair enough. Hey, are you an early riser or late night owl?

John Hay: Oh. So I love the idea of being an early riser.

Japhet De Oliveira: You love the idea. Okay.

John Hay: Yeah. So my dad being a farmer, he was always up pretty early and it wasn't like to take care of animals, it was just because he got up early and he had a lot of stuff to do and on his mind. So that's kind of set it in my mind that that would be my ideal. And I even signed up for a workout class that started at 5:15 a couple months ago.

Japhet De Oliveira: And?

John Hay: Long story short, it failed miserably, meaning I'm not going now. Too early. Man, I want to, but I don't know. Maybe I'll come back to it.

Japhet De Oliveira: All right. So late night owl for you then.

John Hay: Oh, I'm not that either.

Japhet De Oliveira: Oh really? Okay. Just-

John Hay: No.

Japhet De Oliveira: Right in the middle.

John Hay: Lights out at 10 o'clock, 10:30. I can't make it past that. I try, I really, really try. Try and pack as much in my day as humanly possible.

Japhet De Oliveira: All right. This morning when you woke up at a reasonable hour, what was the first thought that went through your mind?

John Hay: Oh. Well, honestly, I knew you were going to be here so I wanted to get here early. Clean up my desk a little bit.

Japhet De Oliveira: Sure. You're so funny. Sure.

John Hay: It gets out of control as my marketing and communications partner Annette can witness occasionally. But yeah. Just getting here, getting here early, knocking a few things out.

Japhet De Oliveira: That's good. And in the morning when you get up, do you have a liquid green smoothie, coffee, tea, water? What's your first drink of the day?

John Hay: Oh man. I wish I was that thoughtful. It tends to be a coffee.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: And it's a drip funnel. So I've kind of gone back and forth between drip and AeroPress. I would love to have an espresso machine at some point.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: You'll get there.

John Hay: It's coffee. I try and make a little homemade latte in the mornings if I have a little bit of wiggle room. Today it was Dutch Bros.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay.

John Hay: And I'm pretty hardcore about Dutch Bros.

Japhet De Oliveira: Oh really?

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: I do know some people who feel the same way about you and we pray for you often. No, I'm kidding. I'm kidding. That's great.

John Hay: Well the trick to Dutch Bros, it's not that they have a secret menu, but you have to kind of know what to ask and how to alter it because the first complaint about Dutch Bros is that, "Oh, there's too much sugar." And I was definitely in that camp for a while, but the sugar isn't necessarily all in the drink. It's in the personality of the people there.

Japhet De Oliveira: Incredible.

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: Every single one, super friendly.

John Hay: Yeah. Like blinding levels of happiness. And it's always followed with like, "Do you want to confirm your tip today?" I sure do.

Japhet De Oliveira: Sure you do. Yeah.

John Hay: But it's a great business.

Japhet De Oliveira: Hey, that is really good. If people described your personality, John, would they say you're an extrovert or an introvert and would you agree with their conclusion?

John Hay: Well, yeah, if people were to describe my personality, I don't know, you'd have to ask them. I kind of consider myself as an omnivert.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: So sometimes I'm excited, sometimes I'm not, I'm more melancholy and stuff to do. It depends on the situation.

Japhet De Oliveira: All right. That's fair enough. That's good. Last one and I'm going to hand over to you a leadership question. Are you a backseat driver?

John Hay: I mean, so I have had the fortune of having great leaders to work for in my life and supporting great leaders is something that I've really enjoyed doing. And with that, probably more of a backseat driver. More of a partner I'd say. I want to know where the game plan is and contribute the best way possible. If that requires being the face of something, then great.

Japhet De Oliveira: I've seen that when we used to have a lot of meetings together that, "John, what you should know about him is that he's a good strategist and he asks really good questions and he's constantly thinking about, not just currently, but multiple steps." You enjoy that.

John Hay: I try.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. You enjoy that.

John Hay: I love it.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. Yeah.

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: That's good. That's good.

John Hay: Oh yeah. I love it.

Japhet De Oliveira: That's good. All right. Floor is open, John. So where would you like to go, from 11 to 100?

John Hay: Okay. So I want to make this fun.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: And so I've got a-

Japhet De Oliveira: So you pulled your phone out.

John Hay: I've got a random ... yeah, yeah. Right.

Japhet De Oliveira: Random-

John Hay: I've got a random number generator.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. Okay.

John Hay: Okay. So 11 to 100, right? So I'm going to spin the wheel.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay, go.

John Hay: All right. Imagine Price is Right and I'm going to walk up and spin the wheel.

Japhet De Oliveira: You know we should start the music now.

John Hay: Okay. Boink. All right. Oop, it says 50. Down the middle.

Japhet De Oliveira: Down the middle. All right. 50 it is. Share about who has influenced you professionally.

John Hay: Oh. There's a lot of people.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: I had a manager for 13, 15 years. His name was Kim Zabel. He definitely influenced me the most.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: Yeah. The question was, do I have a manager, the manager that influenced me the most? Definitely him.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: But I've also had people that I haven't been around a lot that had profound impact on me. Christine Pickering.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah, yeah.

John Hay: Blew me out of the water.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. She's amazing.

John Hay: I still tell her today, if we still chat occasionally, like, "Hey, it's my favorite boss ever."

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah, yeah. That's fantastic.

John Hay: And I mean that genuinely.

Japhet De Oliveira: She was amazing. Yeah, yeah.

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. That's great. And she's not far away, right?

John Hay: No. She's in Camas.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay. Yeah. Good. Hey, that's fantastic. All right. So where next?

John Hay: Okay. Spin the wheel again.

Japhet De Oliveira: Spin the wheel. Yes.

John Hay: Boink. 92. This thing's terrible. I'm questioning this. Why did I do this?

Japhet De Oliveira: All right. Well, John, 92, how would you like to be remembered?

John Hay: Ooh. Occasionally I think about that. I use a lot of AI lately. It's a lot of fun.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. I saw that proposal this morning that you had with all the AI generated images. It was good.

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: It was good.

John Hay: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah. I was pitching an idea using generated images that would help convey it a little bit more. So how I would like to be remembered, so I brought up AI because I've been thinking like is there a way I can get an app to ask me how to journal every day? Because taking the time to journals difficult, but if I'm just driving home, how can I have a conversation and it end up being a journal entry? Because then you can kind of frame your thoughts in a more free thinking way and create some kind of a monologue of your life.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: Is that possible now? Probably not, but yeah. Kind, thoughtful, caring would be great, I'm sure. Funny for sure. Funny for sure. Let me reframe that. Funny, kind, and caring.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay, okay.

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. So with that in mind, a follow up question to this, how do you live into that?

John Hay: Okay. Well with humor for sure. Yesterday I just had this glowing feeling of how much I love my life just based on an interaction I had with one of my colleagues, Michelle Yank. And we were just bantering. Every day we, everybody in administration and a few other departments that aren't part of a team here locally, get together for a daily huddle and we're just bantering back and forth about something. We were talking about what you saw today, the initial concept of how do we get our hospital executives to dress up for an event during hospital week and very tough sell.

Japhet De Oliveira: Well to be fair, I think they would love to be part of it. I don't know whether all the costumes that you did in the AI thing was apropos, but-

John Hay: No. You are absolutely right. I can't guarantee that all of my ideas are amazing.

Japhet De Oliveira: They were worth a pitch.

John Hay: But at least they're funny.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah, yeah. Yeah.

John Hay: So yeah. I don't remember the question now, but is it-

Japhet De Oliveira: Well how do you live into those things that you want to be remembered?

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: Yeah. We just had a really funny moment and it was just amazing. And working in healthcare as I'm doing now, it has reframed my entire perspective on kindness that I did not have before because you're not in the situations every day where, so let's just take your commute, driving back and forth on the freeway and how much rage there is. And in order to just have perspective, you have to have kindness of yourself and the other people there, but it can even be more amplified in healthcare because there's so many people that are in pain. So just practicing the act of kindness is just so more relevant to me now. And it's not that it wasn't before, but it's just a different perspective now.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. That's really good. That is really good. I think it's good for us to think about how we want to be remembered and it's really important to try to live it. Yeah.

John Hay: Oh yeah. Those are two different things sometimes.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. Very, very. All right. Where's the random generator going to take us next?

John Hay: Oh, okay. So here we go. For crying out loud, it went from number 92 to 94.

Japhet De Oliveira: 94. That's really good. If you could change one thing in the world, what would that be, John?

John Hay: Okay. So I mentioned AI and occasionally I'll do a little thought experiment. So are you familiar with ChatGPT?

Japhet De Oliveira: Mm-hmm.

John Hay: Okay. Are you familiar with the MCU, the Marvel Extended Universe?

Japhet De Oliveira: I am as well.

John Hay: MC. Cinematic Universe. Excuse me.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay.

John Hay: Okay. So there's a character that used to be Jarvis and he turned into the vision. Right?

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay, yes. That's right.

John Hay: And he's got this mission of supporting humanity. And so I had this thought, and I have to go back to the question again because now I'm forgetting, but-

Japhet De Oliveira: How would you change the world?

John Hay: How would I change the world?

Japhet De Oliveira: Well one thing that you would do to change the world.

John Hay: So I created a GPT with the intention of me talking to Vision and I said everything that's known about the Vision and his goals and his intelligence and his voice and tone in this GPT and I want to use that information and all of the information that's available on the internet to find a solution for extending humanity.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay. And did it come back?

John Hay: It came back with some pretty amazing things.

Japhet De Oliveira: Really?

John Hay: Yeah, yeah, yeah. And so-

Japhet De Oliveira: Do you remember one that you could share?

John Hay: Oh. The one we landed on was about energy production and how we can create a more efficient way of producing electricity so it's to create a more stable humanity essentially.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. That's great.

John Hay: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: It's fascinating. And so I'm telling the Vision essentially that, "Consider me as your assistant and you need to tell me things to do so I can give you the right information so we can take next steps." So it's telling me places to go to get more data. And I'm like, "So we already have data up to this date. Why don't you use that?" So when I have a free moment, I do get those kind of things and so I'm really curious. I'd like to just melt down a power plant with GPT, trying to computate something so amazing. I know I can't do that.

Japhet De Oliveira: Maybe better than Bitcoin.

John Hay: Yeah, yeah. Bitcoins-

Japhet De Oliveira: All the computer power that you need for that.

John Hay: I know. It's crazy. I wouldn't say that's probably going to benefiting humanity that much, but maybe it will.

Japhet De Oliveira: Hey-

John Hay: Story's still to tell.

Japhet De Oliveira: All right. Let's see what number we have next.

John Hay: Okay. 51.

Japhet De Oliveira: 51. All right.

John Hay: Back to the middle.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah, back to the middle. Let's go here and tell us about something that you know you do differently than most people.

John Hay: Okay.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. That's a good question for you.

John Hay: Yeah. That's very introspective.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: That's probably another question you'd have to ask people that I've been around and they would all have their own different perspective. You ask my wife, Amy, she would have an answer. You ask co-workers current and past. I think, like what you mentioned with strategy, I'd like that to be something I do differently.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: I tend to break the rules. So having someone give me some guidelines or some guideposts occasionally is probably a good thing. Yeah. So I definitely try and go beyond what I'm given, probably to a fault I'd say. Like, "Oh, you're killing yourself doing this. You've overextended it," but it's the fun of it and the excitement I get wrapped up in. So yeah. That's definitely something I do differently.

Japhet De Oliveira: That's good. That's good. Good. All right. That was 51.

John Hay: Okay. So I spun the wheel of destiny and it came up with 65.

Japhet De Oliveira: 65. Okay. Here we go. Share one word that you could use to describe your past, then unpack that one word for us.

John Hay: One word I would use to describe my past and then unpack it. I don't know. That's tough. One word. It seems we're tougher in the middle than we are at the end. You're laughing like you've got inside knowledge here.

Japhet De Oliveira: This is good. This is good.

John Hay: You've done this a few times. How many of these have you done so far?

Japhet De Oliveira: Oh. Over 120.

John Hay: Okay. Wow. All right. And don't hold back if you want to say this is your best one yet.

Japhet De Oliveira: No, for sure. Thank you. Thank you. I appreciate your humor.

John Hay: Yeah. So one word, I don't know. So I've always kind of been a little bit, sometimes I've thought the jobs I've had in the past have been exactly what I want. Sometimes they're like, "Yeah, I don't know." And I can say for sure right now this is the one that I'm happiest. And then going back, so I'm unpacking first and then giving you the one word.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah, sure. That was good. It's a good method.

John Hay: Maybe reluctant.

Japhet De Oliveira: Reluctant? Huh.

John Hay: Yeah. There's a often quoted saying about the, because I'm going to mess this up because I don't remember quotes, but it's essentially something about opportunities and the ones you miss are the, I don't remember. I don't know if you're going to be like, "There's enough there for you to help me out on that." Yeah. It's the idea of holding back and being reluctant is something that I'm trying to avoid now because the missed opportunities that come from that reluctance and lack of confidence. So yeah. I think that's where I'll go.

Japhet De Oliveira: That's really interesting because the John that I know, I would've thought you would've chosen a word like inquisitive. And maybe that's what your new chapter is.

John Hay: Yeah. Yeah. No, that's fair. I mean I think that too, but I'm kind of looking at it through the prism of time.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yes, exactly.

John Hay: And where current state would be inquisitive, but looking in my past, I'd say I was probably more reluctant.

Japhet De Oliveira: So maybe that's where you've moved, intentionally so.

John Hay: I try to. I mean I'm still reluctant now with certain things. Just self-confidence can be a problem from times or anxiety. And it was definitely more that way in the past, but now I'm just like, "Just go for it. Don't hold back."

Japhet De Oliveira: That's good. I appreciate you sharing that. Good. All right. Let's go. What's next?

John Hay: Okay. So this time it worked.

Japhet De Oliveira: This time it worked. I thought it worked every single time. It chose a number.

John Hay: It did. Yeah. No, no. My phone worked this time.

Japhet De Oliveira: Oh, okay.

John Hay: Okay. So I spun the wheel of destiny. It was 65.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay.

John Hay: I did not spin it very hard. I think I spun it with a light gust of wind. It's now 66.

Japhet De Oliveira: All right.

John Hay: So I just leaned on it gently and I don't know if that's fair.

Japhet De Oliveira: That's fair enough, but we'll go with that. So tell us about one of your favorite songs and what do you love about it?

John Hay: So I don't remember the name of it, but it was an earlier song of this artist and it was just I came across him this week or last week.

Japhet De Oliveira: And it's become your favorite song?

John Hay: It's one of my favorites now.

Japhet De Oliveira: That's really good. A local artist?

John Hay: No.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay.

John Hay: His name's John Prine.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay.

John Hay: So kind of a country folk singer. And he's passed away now. He was popular in the '70s and '80s I think. And the lyrics are just amazing. He's throwing in so many different meanings in one sentence, I'm just blown away with it. So I can't cite a specific song of his, but it just came up in my streaming music platform of choice. And I'm just like, "What is this? This is all new to me." That's my new fascination is John Prine and I'll just go with that.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah. That's good. I like that. Good. Where next?

John Hay: Next, spinning the wheel. Oh, okay. So I really leaned in at this one and it went completely around and back to 19.

Japhet De Oliveira: 19. All right. What's your exercise routine?

John Hay: Okay. Not-

Japhet De Oliveira: Very early. Very early in the morning.

John Hay: Lately not much.

Japhet De Oliveira: Oh yeah.

John Hay: Literally been doing a lot. So exercise, sorry. Michelle has falled a little to side and I say sorry, Michelle, because one of my co-workers, Michelle, is an exercise guru.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay, okay.

John Hay: And I've been in her step class before, which I love, but I haven't been going lately. But in the past it's been a lot of walking. During the pandemic, I did a lot of walking.

Japhet De Oliveira: That's good.

John Hay: And hiking is a lot of fun. Kayaking is fun. Found a local kayaker here in Tillamook that is super willing to go whenever. Just send him a text and we'll go kind of thing. So that's great. And there's so many places to kayak here so I'm excited about that. But lately not so much, but ideally it would be a walk after dinner and now that we're seeing more sun-

Japhet De Oliveira: You're going to make it happen.

John Hay: I'm going to really try.

Japhet De Oliveira: So you didn't want to just wear a headlamp and just go out?

John Hay: Well where I live is really cool because I'm essentially on the edge of the forest.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay.

John Hay: So I feel like I live in a park a lot of the time.

Japhet De Oliveira: That's great.

John Hay: With that comes wild animals and I love to walk with it like a podcast going

Japhet De Oliveira: And right next to you.

John Hay: Perhaps this one. Perhaps this one and yeah, exactly. Yeah. I don't want get caught with a cougar pouncing on me.

Japhet De Oliveira: No.

John Hay: Yeah. So walking at night's not my favorite thing. I have done it, but yeah. Not my favorite.

Japhet De Oliveira: No. That's fair enough. All right. We have time for two more, the last two. So where are we going to go randomizer?

John Hay: Okay. On The Price is Right, if you spin the wheel twice in the same number, do you get a bonus? Okay. 33.

Japhet De Oliveira: 33. All right.

John Hay: Are you familiar with The Price is Right?

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah, I am.

John Hay: Okay.

Japhet De Oliveira: No, I am.

John Hay: Okay, good.

Japhet De Oliveira: Tell us about the best gift you've ever given someone else.

John Hay: Okay. I don't know if it's the best gift, but it's the one that comes to mind.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay, okay. I'm excited to hear this.

John Hay: Close family member, my wife Amy's uncle passed away suddenly. It was before the pandemic. I don't remember exactly what year. Oh, it was 2016. Yeah. I do now know. I remember. Sorry. And I had a good photo of him and didn't really know what to do with it. What I wanted to do something remember him by and a past co-worker I saw on Facebook had been doing hand illustrations in a really specific kind of way where he's drawing everything in one line and making breaks in that line to-

Japhet De Oliveira: To make the image.

John Hay: To make the image, right. There's a name for it. And so I sent him the photo and he did an amazing rendering of my wife's uncle. So that sits in our living room. So yeah. It's incredibly impactful.

Japhet De Oliveira: Hey, that's beautiful. That is beautiful. All right. Our last one. What a lovely memory as well.

John Hay: 75.

Japhet De Oliveira: 75. Okay. Here we go. Do you remember the very first thing that you bought with your own money? What was it and why did you get it?

John Hay: Very first thing?

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: I don't know if it's the first thing, but-

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah, but close to.

John Hay: Yeah, close to it, yeah. And this ties in with the other question about what I wanted to do when I was a child. So back in the day when catalogs were a thing, there was no internet.

Japhet De Oliveira: I remember.

John Hay: And so you'd get a catalog and there was a process to get that catalog. You had to call the company. There's usually an ad you see. So you call the company and you get on their mailing list, then they send you the catalog, and I had several catalogs.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay.

John Hay: So the, I don't remember the name of it. It's the joke one with games and fake stuff, like prank kind of stuff. Whoopee cushions and that stuff.

Japhet De Oliveira: I wish you guys could see John's face, how it's lit up with joy.

John Hay: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. That was a fun catalog. So I'm sure I bought stuff from that.

Japhet De Oliveira: Okay. I can sense you really did. Yeah.

John Hay: And then there is another catalog that I bought a few things from. It was the ninja supply catalog-

Japhet De Oliveira: Of course.

John Hay: That goes with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. So I don't remember what I got. I remember really wanting a grappling hook like, "I want a grappling hook."

Japhet De Oliveira: As you do.

John Hay: And I never did order. I think it was probably too much money. But what I remember ordering was a catalog of rocket launch, like model rockets. And I got this, I ordered, and it was so complicated because you had to get a mail order, you couldn't send a check. I couldn't ask mom to like, "Hey, can you send a check for me for this $80 rocket?" I'm pretty sure it was 80 bucks. It was a replica of the space shuttle.

Japhet De Oliveira: Oh wow. Okay.

John Hay: And it took D cell engines, so it was like a real monster.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah, sure.

John Hay: So yeah, no, I got the check from the bank and sent it off and literally every day I am checking the mailbox like so excited because I'm pretty sure I ordered at the beginning of the summer and then saved all my money. 80 bucks was a lot of money at that point. And that was a lot of lawn mowing for sure. And I think it probably took three months to show up.

Japhet De Oliveira: Wow. Okay.

John Hay: So imagine, every day I'm like desperately checking the mail. So it finally shows up and I build it, which is a whole exercise because it was a really big rocket and it was complicated too because when it would launch, the engine would separate from the space shuttle. So it would come apart in two different pieces and they both had parachutes. So it was probably I would say like a week or two of me building it. I was really excited so it was probably put together a little sloppy and I launched it and the launch was amazing. So the build-up, imagine months of me waiting, I put it together, I'm staying up late, glue it all together, lots of balsa wood, I painted it really nice, put all the stickers, and I launched it and it did land, but because it was two pieces, the main engine piece was disappeared. So it never launched again.

Japhet De Oliveira: No.

John Hay: Yeah, yeah. Exactly. Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: Oh no.

John Hay: So it was such like a build-up to this most amazing thing and it launched and then I could never launch it again because I didn't have all the pieces again.

Japhet De Oliveira: Whoa. Wow.

John Hay: Yeah. But worth it?

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah.

John Hay: Yeah, absolutely. I'm telling you all about it.

Japhet De Oliveira: Yeah, no, that's great. That's great. John, hey, thank you so much for taking the time to share some of these insights into your life and some adventures, your humor, your love for being remembered for something good as well, and I hope you do find another rocket. You should. You should. You should just go look it up and-

John Hay: It's on my list.

Japhet De Oliveira: Build another one, yeah.

John Hay: Yeah.

Japhet De Oliveira: I want to encourage people to do the same thing. Sit down with a friend, drink some good water, tea, whatever it may be, and ask good questions. Discovering things about each other, we become better beings for it. We will grow from it. So pleasure, John. Thank you. God bless everybody and we'll connect again soon.

Narrator: Thank you for joining us for The Story & Experience podcast. We invite you to read, watch, and submit your story and experience at The Story & Experience podcast was brought to you by Adventist Health through the Office of Culture.