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In which John tells you about the hardest thing he ever did.

Buy "Will Grayson, Will Grayson":
... Green your host and there up front number 11 and number 9. You can see John Green and John Green. We are playing Exeter City today. The Swindon Town Swoodilypoopers are in white. And Exeter City is in their traditional red and white striped kits. I like the city of Exeter, but today they are my mortal enemies.

Today I'm going to be telling you the hardest thing I ever did, which was suggested as a topic by Nerdfighter anothereli-- oh Elis there is always another of you. And I am also going to try to win my first match on snow. Some of you might remember that I recently played a match that was an unfortunate draw on the snow. And I almost gave up a goal there. I didn't have anything to worry about. I have Fat Lucas in goal. Everything is going to be fine.

So I'm going to tell you about the hardest thing I ever did today. That's uh, that's a difficult question because there are different kinds of hard. For instance, writing a novel is pretty hard. It's time consuming. Particularly when I was writing Looking For Alaska there was no assurance that anyone was going to read it. That makes writing a novel even harder I think because you're sort of operating on faith.

There you go John Green. You just take that right into the goal please. You just take that into the- why did you get dispossessed?

So I'm going to rank that as the hardest thing that I ever did, and I don't mean that in some braggy way at all and I hope it doesn't sound like that, but you know in my early twenties I spent most weekends writing and I spend most of my nights writing and I wasn't you know out like partying and doing all the stuff I wanted to do because I really wanted to write this story and I was really committed to it and you know and I had a day job so I couldn't write during the day.

Come on come on oh Bald John Green you didn't do it in time. Oh I wish some FIFA experts could tell me what I'm doing wrong and why I'm so poor in the snow. Is it because I'm- I suspect that it's because I'm hitting the "Run" button too much. I just- I love to sprint, it's in my nature as a John Green, you know, I'm a health fanatic. Maybe the hardest thing I did was run 4.5 miles in the 2008 Indianapolis Turkey Trot. That was difficult. I finished in like 56 minutes and I was wearing a coat the whole time because as has been previously mentioned I do not like the cold. That's why the Swindon Town Swoodilypoopers, we just don't excel when it comes time to- AaaaAAAAhhh- sorry, when it comes time to play in the snow. Oh the Swoodilypoopers.

D. Lucas I need you!
Thank you, thank you Fat Lucas.

So I thought I'd tell some stories about when I was writing Looking for Alaska, the hardest thing that I ever did- I think. I mean, I don't know, like having a kid is pretty hard too but it's also really fun.

It's like- Oh, why did you not pass. Obviously I wanted you to pass to Bald John Green, Other John Green! There's such poor communication between these two men who are both named John Green! You would think that they could communicate. I wrote a novel about that, actually. It's called Will Grayson, Will Grayson available at the link in the doobly-doo. That's right I'm not afraid to do a little marketing while I'm-

Oh gosh, oh, oh boy that was scary. I don't even know if Fat Lucas could have gotten that because he's not real tall, he doesn't get up high.

So you know, I started writing Looking for Alaska in 2000 but I seriously started writing it really right after 9/11. And as you no doubt remember in the days after 9/11 there was a lot of talk about how we were living in a post-9/11 world which was a sort of pretentious thing to say since we were only living in like a 5-days-post-9/11 world. And that got me really interested in thinking about the way that we measure time you know. 9/11 was such a dramatic event in the lives of really all Americans because it was something that almost everyone in the United States watched on television; for four days it was the only thing on television and I- you know- we were all so- it was just emotionally and psychologically devastating even if you didn't live in close proximity to the attacks.

Why do I always kick it over can someone give me some advice on that? I'm hitting the "RB" button I thought that was the button I was supposed to hit.

And here we are at the end of the first half and Swindon Town, the Swoodilypoopers have again failed so score in the snow. It's just not- it's not what we're good at. But we need to be getting points in the End Power League One because we're currently in 3rd place and we really need to finish in 1st because it's hugely important that we get promoted to the championship in order to continue the Swoodilypoopers' dream of eventually playing in the Barclays Premier League. Lowly Swindon Town, the Barclays Premier League but we're a long way from that now, and that's why even Bald John Green is shaking his head in disappointment and saying "Maybe I need to shave my mustache".

So right after 9/11 I started thinking about the way that we measure time like everybody measures time not from the beginning of time but from the most important event in history, right so in the Christian calendar we date from the birth of Jesus, we were actually probably wrong by 4 years but we date from what some guy somewhere thought was the birth of Jesus. And in the Islamic calendar they date from the Hijra, the Islamic community's journey from Mecca to Medina in 622- I believe 622 AD- don't quote me on that. I mean I'm playing FIFA so obviously I'm not at the moment of expert in Islamic history. But that's the way most calendars date is not from the beginning of time but from the most important event in time and that made me think about a structure for the novel that I'd been trying to write for like at that point a year and a half. It gave me a structure, a before and after structure and I knew that the event at the center of the novel was going to be the most important event in these kids' lives, it was going to be something that they were always going to be able to measure their days by and one of the interesting things about 9/11 but also really like personal catastrophes as well is that you find that you can measure your days by them. You know for instance, I talked in a video about Pants the Cat. Well I remember when I look back at my twenties, I remember, was that before, or after that young woman and I broke up. I know if it was before or after because I can remember my emotional state.

Oh that was just an awful pass that is- yes, yes yes! (6:42) [SWI - #9 J. Green 63'] Bald John Green I love you so much!!! Show me your mustache, show me your mustache! Don't just show me your bald head show me your beautiful mustache. Ohh. Swindon Town's #9 coming through again I want to write a song about him. If somebody could write me a song I will do you the favor of not singing it.

So, and I think that's true for a lot of personal catastrophes. I certainly remember things by whether I knew Sarah and that kind of thing. So not just bad things, also just important events tend to be date markers. So when I got that uh- ba

Oh no. Ohhhh shnoobersgebheeh. D Lucas, great job.

When I got that suddenly I was really excited about writing the novel and something that had been you know really really difficult for me, and had basically been hard work became really exciting work. And it went from me saying "Oh I'm sorry I can't go to the movies tonight because I'm trying to become a successful novelist" to me saying "Oh I'm sorry I can't go to the movies tonight because I really want to write this story". And that's I think the truth of hard work is that at some point if you're lucky you make a transition from working hard because you want x or y or z to working hard because you're really excited about the work that you're doing. And I've been really-

John Green. Oh you're a better finisher than that! You are a better finisher than that, John Green.

I've been, you know, very fortunate that I've been able to do work that I love for the past several years and that makes it a lot easier to work hard. I also think that like, generally, and this is a lesson for all of us, if you can find the utility of your work, if you can find the value of it not just to yourself but also to other people, it becomes a lot easier to work really hard. That's true whether you're working at Target or you're a CEO; I think if you can understand and believe in the social value of your work like the way that what you're doing contributes hopefully to the well-being and happiness of people.

Other John Green! Come on Other John Green! That's just great goal-keeping by Exeter City, full points there. I had an unnecessary slide tackle there I don't know if you caught it on the right side of the screen. That however is a necessary slide tackle. Great pass. Really proud of you there buddy. Great job. That's just... Vintage, Swindon Town Passing.

And so I mean I guess that's the question I would ask of you is whether you're a student or you're working whether you feel connected to the social value of your work. Because the fact is almost all jobs do contribute to the social fabric and do contribute to the, you know, economic and personal well being of people. And that's one of the really fulfilling things about doing work and I don't just mean paperwork I mean I think that's true for volunteering-

Oh no, oh no, oh no. (9:57) [EXE - #29 J. O'Flynn 90'] Oooooh. In the 90th Minute. Ohh no. Ooooh the pain. I cannot win on snow. I'm furious. I do not feel like I'm contributing to the social well-being of the world right now I feel angry. And when I feel angry I score! Bald John Green, you've gotta get that ball! Oh. The- I mean- utter devastation. This must be how fans. Ugh. The awwwww. Oh it hangs heavy in my heart. Oooh. This reminds me of Liverpool's 2005 Champions' League victory only it's the opposite. Full time, 1-1 tie. Exeter City and my beloved Swindon Town Swoodilypoopers.

Thank you for joining me for another episode of Hank Games without Hank. It's really been a pleasure. Let me know what I should talk about next time, and as always my friends, best wishes.

[vs. Exeter City: D 1-1

SWI: "Bald" John Green 63'

EXE: J. O'Flynn 90']