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#goodbye

July 27, 2012 Leave a comment

You didn’t think I would leave without saying #goodbye did you? After all of the time that the #hashheads gave to this blog, I could not dream of leaving things undone. Allow this episode to stand as a series finale of sorts; not like a “House M.D.” or “Seinfeld” series finale, more like a “Harry’s Law” or “Kings” series finale (I mean #Hashtagfairytales is #epic, but it isn’t #EPIC). So my friends, allow me to make a declaration of sorts: When in the course of online events, it becomes necessary for a person to dissolve the creative bands that have connected them to a website. A decent respect to the opinions of any fans or readers that the site has gained requires that they should declare the causes which compel them to this separation.

I hold this truth to be self evident: #Hashtagfairytales has been a hell of a good time for me! I hope that it has been for you as well. But it has run its course. It is time to move on. Does that mean that the domain is leaving? No. http://hashtagfairytales.com will remain alive and well (#cheapplug). This site will remain as I am very proud of the ride that we had. The guest posts, the fun comments, the responses to the #PolloftheWeek; I would be amiss to forsake them. I will leave them to memorialize the joy, the intellect, and the suffering that was had in these pages. #Hashtagfairytales has had the opportunity to react to a few timeless or historic events.

The inception being in the wake of the death of Osama bin Laden, #HTFT has had the solemn duty of reacting to events like the passing of several individuals (Randy Savage, Whitney Huston, and Dick Clark to name a few), and tragedies such as the Norway shooting, but it has also had the pleasure of celebrating holidays (Thanksgiving [#gracias], Christmas [#istayinnarnia] and of course the premier of @CutDownPodcast), and introducing items of pop culture (#obscurereference). We experienced together the rise and fall of #TheAdministration (let me save you some time, it was a sham like Mili Vanilli’s singing voice; it was as fake as the Easter bunny or Iowa).  I guess the #bottomline is: I’ve had a good time.

You might ask: Ok then, Why? Why is this #goodbye? Why not #seeyalater? Because my friends, it is time. Everything has it’s time and everything must die. This project that is #Hashtagfairytales has run its course; it lasted longer than a Kardashian marriage (I’m looking at you Kim), but not quite as long as a Kardashian marriage (Kudos to you Khloé). Does that mean that the #hashtag is dead? No, it is still alive, although if it doesn’t watch it’s back the meme will soon take over. I simply mean that this project, this platform, this blog is done. The purpose of this whole thing was to give me a platform. Once again, it is no secret that my goal, my dream, my “rock star job” would be to be an announcer for the WWE, but I ask you, is #Hashtagfairytales going to get me there? It is tough to come to the conclusion that it isn’t.  Did it even extend my name further than my existing circles? It is difficult to face the fact that it hardly did.

One of the hardest things for a man to do is admit that he is wrong, so I face that difficulty and publish it online.

I was wrong.

Drink that in, everyone with whom I have ever had a conversation; it may not happen again.

I was wrong.

Dang, I was wrong, it DID happen again…

And again.

But you get the point. The internet is full of people projecting themselves and creating platforms, how many of them will admit they are wrong? How many will admit that they are barking up the wrong tree?

Let me clarify, I do not regret #HTFT, I simply recognize it as a project that didn’t accomplish my goal. But believe it was a great time and I had so much fun writing it. I cherish each of the readers I have had. Each reader who took their time to invest in me has a special place in my heart. I don’t just say that, I mean it. On top of that, #HTFT truly honed my skill of creative writing. Through this blog I have been able to find my writing voice, but by and large this project is in fact done.

Allow me to quote an author for whom I have the utmost respect, Jesse Rice, author of “The Church of Facebook.” In his last blog for THE CHURCH OF FACEBOOK (I’m not yelling, he just likes all caps), he said this:

“Sometimes you just need to admit you’ve failed and start over. I pretty much failed as The Church of Facebook blogger and that’s okay. I have other gifts. Namely, house plant maintenance. I was inconsistent, my branding was all over the place (as were my topics), and did not have any clear goals in mind. I sincerely apologize to my faithful subscribers who took a chance pressing the ‘submit’ button and didn’t get much in return. But admitting failure clears the road for a new beginning.”

I cannot say that I am gifted in the art of ensuring the survival and prosperity for the common ficus as Mr. Rice may well be, but I can say that I agree with his statement.  I must admit #hashheads, #HTFT was all over the place, in a bit of a quirky way, but a blog needs direct guidance. Upon his first visit to this blog, Graphic designer Nate Davis said this to me, “So. When you said ‘hashtagfairytales,’ I thought you were either going to make up stories in 140 characters, or based on hashtags that you noticed on Twitter.” That would have been a good call Mr. D, but that #Hashtagfairytales was not. But rest assured that Jacob C. Howard is not gone, you will see him again in an online capacity (possibly sooner than you think).

#Hashtagfairytales is and was a medium of entertainment. It may not be streamlined or organized in such a way as to amplify my name, but if this blog has entertained and/or taught any one person. I say, #missionaccomplished. Thank you to everyone who has dropped by. I appreciate it. I will miss #Hashtagfairytales, but I bid you all adieu, and I say with all love and respect possible; with a heart of joy for time well spent: #goodbye.

(“Insert smart ass author comment here”)

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#dreamon

December 31, 2011 4 comments

(Though this post first appeared September 16, today it’s New Years Eve, and people are thinking about goals for 2012, let this be an encouragement to you: Accomplish your goals, reach higher heights, live your dream! Number 1 in the countdown; the very best of the #BestofHTFT; I implore you my friends: #dreamon!)

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Real men love poetry. It takes a real man to write it, and it takes a real man to read it. I am not sure how, but over time, poetry has been taken as a sign of weakness for men. Men who like poetry have been seen as “sissys” along with men who can cry, or can express themselves. Let’s not forget that poetry was written by the truly #badass: Walt Whitman, Bill Shakespeare, Keats, Yeats, T.S. Elliott to name a very few! I love poetry, and I am going to reference my favorite poem quite a bit this week on #Hashtagfairytales.

The name of the poem is “Ebb and flow.” It was written by a #BA named George William Curtis and can be found here in its entirety. The poem starts like this:

I walked beside the evening sea,

And dreamed a dream that could not be;

The waves that plunged along the shore

Said only – “Dreamer, dream no more”

That’s right my friends, in accordance with the prophecy, this week we are talking about dreams! Last week we had a bit about being a good #Quitter (with the assist provided by Jon Acuff) but what about after you quit? What about the dream that comes next? I believe that our dreams are the most important things about us and without them we are nothing. About that poem: this person is walking on the beach and he (at least I assume it’s a “he;” mainly because I am a “he”) is dreaming “a dream that could not be!” I love it, this guy is a dreamer. Last week I said that sometimes our day job and our dream job can seem worlds apart; that is how it should be is it not? If your dream is not out of this world, you aren’t dreaming big enough.

The gentleman in the poem is dreaming so big that he cannot see the fruition of the dream, he can only say that his dream is so great that it cannot be. #Hashheads, if you say you have a dream and it is not out of this world, give it up. It isn’t worth it. As a matter of fact, if you don’t have big dreams, thanks for coming, but this post probably isn’t for you. But if you ever dreamed a dream that could not be, you’re in good company. If you have ever had the urge to reach for the stars, pass them up and grab the moon out of the friggin’ sky, then this post is for you! I dream a dream that cannot be: I am a Record-Keeping and Reporting Specialist by day and an Assistant Director of Residential Life by night, I am from Oakland, California and my dream above all else is to one day provide play-by-play announcing for World Wrestling Entertainment. THAT is my dream; that is the dream that Jon Acuff mentioned on page 229 of the book #Quitter.

Back to the poem, the waves on the shore of the beach—nature itself—is telling the man to dream no more. Yup, that seems about right. The dream is so big that it seems everything, everyone, and all of nature is against it. Give it up, it’ll never happen. Dreamer, you are wasting your time. Your talent isn’t niche enough, your skill isn’t good enough, your work isn’t interesting enough. There is always some reason to give it up and throw it all away isn’t there? The waves are right, I’ll never win, I’ll never make it (#depressing). Chup, that pretty much sucks, but luckily there’s more to the poem.

In the second stanza, he continues to walk along the beach and the waves are crashing even harder and speaking even louder, but this time they are saying, “Dreamer, dream again.” How’s that for mixed messages?! But as ol’ blue eyes Frank Sinatra used to say, #thatslife! Sometimes it feels like the same people tearing you down are then building you up, and vice versa. Dream no more, actually, dream again. That’s kind of confusing, but did you notice the one consistency? He was called “Dreamer” both times. He continues to dream no matter whether he is encouraged to dream on or he is told to just let go of his stupid idea. “You’ll never be a Sound Engineer.” “Being a Lonely Planet Travel Writer is what you were born to do!” “You can forget about the WWE man, you just aren’t good enough!” “You absolutely need to continue trying to start that bakery!” The words go on and on and vain is their united cry; you must continue to be a Dreamer. Dream a dream that could not be.

Then, there’s the last stanza. The man returned to the solitude of his own home. The gloom of life weighing down upon him, he heard a sound, but it was not the waves, it was not his friends, it was his own heart. Like the sea itself it banged within his chest and it said these words, “Dream on!” and “Dream no more!” I love it! The heart is speaking truth, we must #dreamon because we ought never cease being dreamers. If your dream is to be a big time rap artist, you ought to not be satisfied with one person telling you that, “your music is dope, I believe in you.” There can be no satisfaction with the release of one album. Listen to your heart oh, Dreamer; #dreamon. Just listen to Aerosmith: Dream on, dream until your dreams come true!

The heart is not only saying to continue dreaming, but is also saying #dreamnomore. How appropriate! You must always further your goals, no matter what heights you reach, but there comes a time to stop dreaming and start doing. Dreamer, dream no more, make a plan, take some steps. Stop looking up what you need to do to start your accounting firm, and go file some papers. That is what #Hashtagfairytales is to me, it is an actual step. If I can entertain, and make myself known, create a platform, I can accomplish more and beyond! My favorite part though is that I don’t do it alone. Every reader, every commenter, every #PolloftheWeek vote, every #hashhead makes what I do worthwhile. With no readers these are words with a web address, with you all, it is the next step in a 10 year old dream! There comes a time to dream no more, and my friends, the time is now. The heart cries out to us all #dreamon and #dreamnomore.

A few people who are striving to live their dream:

Bad Blood Bandits

Becoming threeFifty Cakery

CTM Designs

Iglesia Vida/Life Church

James Elliott Photography

Kanoa Utler Photography

Malee Kai

Natalie Stroble Design Solutions

Nate Davis | copywriter

Support these Dreamers who #dreamon and #dreamnomore

(It appears I have gotten pretty clumsy, because I dropped more names than ever before! Acedo down to Utler. All in all, in my opinion, good 20th Episode no?)

#dreamon

September 16, 2011 3 comments

Real men love poetry. It takes a real man to write it, and it takes a real man to read it. I am not sure how, but over time, poetry has been taken as a sign of weakness for men. Men who like poetry have been seen as “sissys” along with men who can cry, or can express themselves. Let’s not forget that poetry was written by the truly #badass: Walt Whitman, Bill Shakespeare, Keats, Yeats, T.S. Elliott to name a very few! I love poetry, and I am going to reference my favorite poem quite a bit this week on #Hashtagfairytales.

The name of the poem is “Ebb and flow.” It was written by a #BA named George William Curtis and can be found here in its entirety. The poem starts like this:

I walked beside the evening sea,

And dreamed a dream that could not be;

The waves that plunged along the shore

Said only – “Dreamer, dream no more”

That’s right my friends, in accordance with the prophecy, this week we are talking about dreams! Last week we had a bit about being a good #Quitter (with the assist provided by Jon Acuff) but what about after you quit? What about the dream that comes next? I believe that our dreams are the most important things about us and without them we are nothing. About that poem: this person is walking on the beach and he (at least I assume it’s a “he;” mainly because I am a “he”) is dreaming “a dream that could not be!” I love it, this guy is a dreamer. Last week I said that sometimes our day job and our dream job can seem worlds apart; that is how it should be is it not? If your dream is not out of this world, you aren’t dreaming big enough.

The gentleman in the poem is dreaming so big that he cannot see the fruition of the dream, he can only say that his dream is so great that it cannot be. #Hashheads, if you say you have a dream and it is not out of this world, give it up. It isn’t worth it. As a matter of fact, if you don’t have big dreams, thanks for coming, but this post probably isn’t for you. But if you ever dreamed a dream that could not be, you’re in good company. If you have ever had the urge to reach for the stars, pass them up and grab the moon out of the friggin’ sky, then this post is for you! I dream a dream that cannot be: I am a Record-Keeping and Reporting Specialist by day and an Assistant Director of Residential Life by night, I am from Oakland, California and my dream above all else is to one day provide play-by-play announcing for World Wrestling Entertainment. THAT is the dream on page 229 of the book #Quitter.

Back to the poem, the waves on the shore of the beach—nature itself—is telling the man to dream no more. Yup, that seems about right. The dream is so big that it seems everything, everyone, and all of nature is against it. Give it up, it’ll never happen. Dreamer, you are wasting your time. Your talent isn’t niche enough, your skill isn’t good enough, your work isn’t interesting enough. There is always some reason to give it up and throw it all away isn’t there? The waves are right, I’ll never win, I’ll never make it (#depressing). Chup, that pretty much sucks, but luckily there’s more to the poem.

In the second stanza, he continues to walk along the beach and the waves are crashing even harder and speaking even louder, but this time they are saying, “Dreamer, dream again.” How’s that for mixed messages?! But as ol’ blue eyes Frank Sinatra used to say, #thatslife! Sometimes it feels like the same people tearing you down are then building you up, and vice versa. Dream no more, actually, dream again. That’s kind of confusing, but did you notice the one consistency? He was called “Dreamer” both times. He continues to dream no matter whether he is encouraged to dream on or he is told to just let go of his stupid idea. “You’ll never be a Sound Engineer.” “Being a Lonely Planet Travel Writer is what you were born to do!” “You can forget about the WWE man, you just aren’t good enough!” “You absolutely need to continue trying to start that bakery!” The words go on and on and vain is their united cry; you must continue to be a Dreamer. Dream a dream that could not be.

Then, there’s the last stanza. The man returned to the solitude of his own home. The gloom of life weighing down upon him, he heard a sound, but it was not the waves, it was not his friends, it was his own heart. Like the sea itself it banged within his chest and it said these words, “Dream on!” and “Dream no more!” I love it! The heart is speaking truth, we must #dreamon because we ought never cease being dreamers. If your dream is to be a big time rap artist, you ought to not be satisfied with one person telling you that, “your music is dope, I believe in you.” There can be no satisfaction with the release of one album. Listen to your heart oh, Dreamer; #dreamon. Just listen to Aerosmith: Dream on, dream until your dreams come true!

The heart is not only saying to continue dreaming, but is also saying #dreamnomore. How appropriate! You must always further your goals, no matter what heights you reach, but there comes a time to stop dreaming and start doing. Dreamer, dream no more, make a plan, take some steps. Stop looking up what you need to do to start your accounting firm, and go file some papers. That is what #Hashtagfairytales is to me, it is an actual step. If I can entertain, and make myself known, create a platform, I can accomplish more and beyond! My favorite part though is that I don’t do it alone. Every reader, every commenter, every #PolloftheWeek vote, every #hashhead makes what I do worthwhile. With no readers these are words with a web address, with you all, it is the next step in a 10 year old dream! There comes a time to dream no more, and my friends, the time is now. The heart cries out to us all #dreamon and #dreamnomore.

A few people who are striving to live their dream:

Bad Blood Bandits

Becoming threeFifty Cakery

CTM Designs

Iglesia Vida/Life Church

James Elliott Photography

Kanoa Utler Photography

Malee Kai

Natalie Stroble Design Solutions

Nate Davis | copywriter

Support these Dreamers who #dreamon and #dreamnomore

(It appears I have gotten pretty clumsy, because I dropped more names than ever before! Acedo down to Utler. All in all, in my opinion, good 20th Episode no?)

#itsallaboutthehustle

September 9, 2011 1 comment

Let me just tell you: I hate my job! I hate everything about it. I hate the work, I hate the people, I hate the squeak that the floor down the hall makes. I hate the paint job, I hate the way the wheels in the printer spin, I hate the way the fancy clock hangs on the wall “just so.” I just want to quit this stupid job and work on my true dream: world-renowned bar-tender and mixologist!

I don’t really feel that way; I am fine with my job. I mean I don’t love it, but I fer sure don’t hate it. I really like the people as a matter of fact, but I am working as a Record-Keeping and Reporting Specialist; I went to school for Communication/Public Relations. Is there any job in the world further from my interest in new media and Communication?! (maybe raising alpacas…maybe) While I don’t share the exact sentiments with which this episode started, I have found myself desiring a change of scenery. I mean I suppose I could put my desk against the other wall to spice up my life, but I’d prefer to just do my dream job. I don’t think that there’s any surprise that my current job is just a day job, not unlike many or all of you #hashheads, I too have a dream; I have my idea of a “rockstar” job. I would like to close the gaping hole between my day job and my dream job; I want to be a #Quitter, and there is one man who can help.

Best-selling author, blogger, and Hip-hop aficionado Jonathan Acuff has quit more jobs than I have had! The man quit eight jobs in eight years. Who hasn’t been there though? We all want to quit our day jobs—the jobs that feel like they are killing our soul—and go to our dream jobs just like Jon Acuff eventually did. The true difficulty though is learning how to become a #Quitter, and it is Jon himself who helps with this in his book #Quitter.

Jon has a name for this generation of young workers, he calls us the “I’m but…” generation. This generation is one that often says, “I’m a mechanic, but I want to be a DJ;” “I’m a barista, but I want to be a philosophy professor;” I’m a teacher, but I want to be a CPA;” “I’m CEO of Apple Inc, but I want to be an alpaca farmer.” (Sure, that last one is a bit unlikely, but the point remains). I finished the book #Quitter and I loved it, and I am not just saying that because I am featured on page 229 (that’s a true story), I loved it because I look at quitting a completely different way now. Friends, this week on #Hashtagfairytales, allow me to share the top 4 ways Acuff’s book is helping me (and will help you) to become a great #Quitter!

#allinthefamily- I said earlier that my current job is “just a day job” as well as that day jobs can feel like they are soul-crushing and I think that most of you can identify with that, but that is a skewed view. Acuff explores in-depth the relationship between the day job and the dream job. It is tough to think of the two as being related, especially if the day job is accountant and the dream job is music producer, but your day job and your dream job are closely related. It’s easy to see your day job as an acquaintance that your dream job may have seen at a meeting, but it’s more like an uncle or a brother. The reason we don’t see them as related is because often the skills are much different, but keep in mind the biggest relation: you. You are going to be involved in both at some point in your life and you must see the relation because if you are doing things right, they will start to get closer and closer.

#BFF- Aside from your day job and your dream job being related, they can be BFF’s if you let them (for the Noah Webster crowd, that’s Best Friends Forever)! In order to become the best #Quitter you can be, your day job will need to be the biggest supporter of your dream job. Keep in mind that it is your day job that’ll keep the lights on while your dream is spinnin’ vinyl; your day job that will keep food on the table while your dream is off writing the next trendy pre-teen novel; your day job that’ll pay your rent while your dream is studying for the bar exam; Record-keeping and Reporting that’ll pay off your car while your dream is getting your name out there. You may not love your day job, and you don’t need to, but Jon Acuff can teach you how to fall in like with a job you don’t love.

#itsallaboutthehustle- One of the most influential professors I had at Patten University was Dr. Al Carlos Hernandez—don’t let the “Dr.” fool you, he’s from the projects. Doc AC would always say, “#itsallaboutthehustle;” Acuff would be inclined to agree. The hustle is the only thing that will close the gap between a day job and a dream job, and I think that is obvious, but to quote the book, “You can’t loaf on your day job all week and then expect to magically throw the switch on the weekend and hustle on your dream.” That’s right my friends, listen to Dr. AC, #itsALLaboutthehustle; not just your dream, but your day job too! If I am going to be a Record-Keeping and Reporting Specialist, I’m gonna keep the best damn records I can.

#peoplegetready- The most important thing about being a good #Quitter is being ready to quit. Once you fall in like with a job you don’t love, Acuff describes staying there until you are ready for your dream. Most people aren’t ready to jump directly into their dream job which is why we become BFF’s with the day job that is acting as an incubator to our dream. Our day job can be useful: for a pizza, it’d be the oven before the plate, for a hone, it is the water before the blade, for a football player, it’s the Kardashian before the wife; the item spends some time inside the first thing before it is ready for the second (#gross). Good #Quitters will be ready; you’ll know when because there is a really good quiz in the book. Line by line and story by story Jon Acuff equips a generation of #Quitters with the tools to not only quit, but to succeed at quitting! My only advice: Read it!

(We had a nice little talk about quitting, but next week, what say we talk about dreams? You know, the thing that’ll come after quitting)

(Also, Welcome back Kardashians)