Well then.... Let's see.
I got licensed as a novice when I was 14, I have ALWAYS been proficient to 40+WPM CW (morse code) CW was asways my preferred method as a teen - I BUILT MY RADIO it was a Heath Kit 4 band HF Transciever that has 4 watts input (you will need to understand my slang to do well on your tests) and I kept mainly to 10/15 meters and 4o meters in the day and 80 meters at night. I had thousands of people to use my paddle keyers with. It really was my high point of being a wizz-kid but life continued on, by time I was 35 I had pretty well peaked in online time. The Internet hasn't killed HAM but it surely hurt it.
Speaking of which, I'm not shooting digs at any of you, but if you want to talk to the world, come into Ventrillo - get some behind the mic time in and meet your fellow members. I leave that there :)
But, here are some of my highlights, dates range from 1974-1990 approx.
*I talked to the two pilots on the THIRD Space Shuttle Mission - they were 6 hours before launch, and in a highly published date in QST and 73 magazines and THOUSANDS of hams tried to talk to the pilots at the launch site, the day they were to blast into space. It was the FIRST mission they flew without painting the Massive main fuel tank. It saved them over 800 pounds in paint/load that needed to be blasted into space. That 800 pounds of paint was likely worth hundreds or thousands of pounds of fuel.
Side Note:SIDE NOTE: another FYI thing... Whenever HAMs are in the position where EVERYONE is trying to talk to JUST ONE PERSON - everyone shouts out their call-signs until the lone party calls the last three letters back at you, then everyone shuts up, and only the people with those exact letters call out - usually there is only one and sometimes the person can only pull from the mod TWO letters, making the old of more people to come forward, all giving their callsigns in full. The lone operator calls out which one he thought he heard. Very organized and very clean system.
*I talked to King Hosain of Jordan (JY1 is WAS his call) in order to talk with the King, you had to schedule a time to talk and on the band they choose. It was about 6 in the evening in the Winter, I remember it being dark out and finally, after listening to him talk with 30 other people) and remember and HAM Contest or Event (and there are soooo many cool contest are on HAM.) but the king was an avid ham and like all hams he wishes to work as many countries as they can - if they are DXers. But people who don't know have to realise in HAM radio we can exchange callsign information and location in 30 seconds and it counts as a contact. Then hams, generally exchange QSL cards with each other as proof ot the contact. Mind you, both the CALSIGN and the LOCATION must be exact on each card or it does not count. It's easy to cheat the sysem on that one though - no one know if the other person copied the info correctly.
*I talked to President Ronald Reagan around 1984, he was doing an event in NY, I cannot remember why he was on 40 meters, I seem to remember it being related to National Communication issues. He was on the radio for nearly an hour, enjoying not making contacts, but meeting the people from all over - I guess it was a real treat to him. This event was not scheduled I assume, serious Secret Service issues I would think. I head he was on from one of the GROUP FREQUENCIES (again lots of ham chat rooms - many where they need to round-table the mic time. But I heard about it on one band and switched to the other and got lucky.
*I did MOON BOUNCE and it is extremely cool to do. Moon bounce simple means that you get in the HAM magazines the date and time that the moon will reflect signals DIRECTLY BACK to the HAM. You are also give the frequency to best do it on. At the time scheduled, I held a 2 meter handheld (don't say walky talky - other hams will know you are an new ham say handheld instead.
So I was standing in the field across from my home, somewhere around 146.something mhz and for a minute before and after I tried calling my callsign into the small transciever and about 40 seconds into trying, I heard FROM THE MOON me saying "The is John Clayton, N2CIW, Lakehurst, NJ and in around 5 seconds time, I heard myself repeated perfectly from the moon.
In 1987 I ran a HAM radio Certificate event from the crashsite of the Hindenburg, with permission from the then captain I announced it two months previous in the magazines and around 2400 BEAUTIFUL certificates (ready for framing) showing a quality drawing of the Hindenburge, all the contact info and MOST SPECIAL a soil sample from the actual crashsite itself. The sand there at the time SURELY was not the same sand, but it was lying for years at the site. Today, it is tarmacked over forever more. Everyone sent me a dollar, for postage and gluing the sand to the certificates, it was labor intensive, that was a lot of certificates and I never ran out of people, I ran out of time!
That all I can think of now, HOPE you enjoyed my HAM RADIO flashback in time.