Week of Anime and Messages

Here over the past couple days I have watched three short anime that have surprised me or inspired me in some way. I know my resolutions to read more, write more, and play more games are still in affect. I also found the time to do this. It’s called multi-tasking and what really happened is I didn’t read like I should have. Bad on me.

In any case the following three anime I want to talk about a little bit. What made them stand out to me, what I think the major take away for me was, and just a short shout out saying you all might should give them a try as well.

Spoilers Ahead.

The first anime was Violet Evergardern. I did not know what to expect going into this show, just that it was a show about a woman after a war. The first episode took me by storm in finding out that Violet was a survivor after having both of her arms blown off while attempting to carry her commanding officer to safety. It becomes quickly apparent to the viewer that the commander did not make it but the doctors, nurses, and later everyone for quite awhile never tell her this directly. It is later in the anime that she is forced to deal with the full weight of the grief from losing him as she loved him. Two major moments for her are when his brother finally forgives her for his death and meeting his mother. Two powerful moments when Violet is finally able to some degree forgive herself for the commander not making it despite her attempts.

Violet after the war works writing letters for people who cannot and all of the major letters that she writes tell a story about the overarcing theme of the anime. Love. Violet is on a quest to find out what the phrase “I love you” means because while he was dying her commander said that phrase to her. Violet’s quest takes her far and wide in the country where she helps a woman write letters to her daughter to be delivered after she dies every year for 50 years on the daughters birthday. She helps a princess express her love for a prince over the course of several letters made public to the nation to help build unity. Violet even travels back to the front lines to help a soldier write a letter to his beloved after he was mortally wounded. Violet ends up delivering the letter and the news of his passing to her.

It is a powerful anime that tells an amazing story while driving home the point of telling the viewer to not waste a moment and tell the person who matters most just how much they mean to you.

Secondly I watched Chivalry of a Failed Knight. In this anime the main character Ikki is forced to defend his “weakness” throughout the entire series. Ikki is considered weak because he has no “talent” or the gift of “genius” and instead must work hard to overcome. I know, a common anime trope that has been done a thousand times.

The way it was done in this one though just felt so much cleaner. This could be because of the length of the show and the fact that the entire season was a tournament arc with side story. Until the end when the tournament became the side story and as the viewer you were sucked into what was unfolding on the outskirts of these fun fights.

I think the biggest part of the story for me that felt so good was that the main characters actually got together. Ikki actually dated Stella making the typical harem anime start to fall away. Then by the end he actually proposes to her completing the story. It just felt so damn satisfying. There are other reasons that that felt great but to find out why you really should watch the anime.

I think the big take away from this anime is to not only fight for yourself and who you are but to fight for the people that you love no matter who/what you are against. Ikki started by only fighting for himself but in the end was fighting for Stella and all the people he helped along his path.

Lastly I finally broke down and watched Girls Und Panzer which I thought would be far too redicolous for me to ever consider watching. After attempting and failing to get my internet to properly connect to play World of Tanks I sat back in my chair said fuck it and watched this “Tank” anime.

I was surprised. It started off being this really silly cutesy anime where they were comparing tanks to really ladylike things. So I was laughing and having a good time with it just going okay lets blow more things up. The story that was also happening wasn’t half bad so I kept watching.

The plot was okay. Play tanks or lose your school. Okay… Sure. For me that was just a side plot the bigger plot was the fight happening between the main character and tradition. The main character was sympathetic and good at bringing everyone together. Main character trope I know. She rallied people to her and brought the best out of them.

Versus the mentality of Victory above all else. Using clever menuevering and some actual levels of research this anime pulled off some fun tank fights that just reminded me that I really wanted to play World of Tanks. It kept me engaged with the pure silliness and the amount of things going boom.

I think the main take away from this anime was that it is okay to do things in your own way. As the main character did the entire time and in the end she was acknowledged for it.

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Stuffed Fables & Avatar

Last night my wife and I hosted a little mini Avatar the Last Airbender party. The true purpose was to finally get one of our friends to watch the show or was it to all hang out again for the first time in way too long.

We ended up playing a new board game called Stuffed Fables where you play as a bunch of “stuffies” aka stuffed animals that belong to a little girl. She has just graduated from a crib to a “big girl bed”. Which means that as stuffies you must defend her from the evil beneath her bed.

It was a lot of fun playing a wizened old toy named Stitch that belonged to the girls’ mother with my trusty new friends a Elephant named Lumpy, a Bunny names Flops, and of course a Teddy Bear named Theodora. We vanquished evil, struggled with some of the rules, and all in all had a great evening kicking the ass of the weird spider doll headed thing from toy story.

Avatar played in the background the whole time as anytime something important happened we would stop to allow a proper viewing of the events. Knowing where the story is heading makes the first part of the Avatars journey so much more fun but also it helps knowing that several of the first episodes were purely there to gain an audience/world build.

I cannot wait until we do this silliness again!!

Minnesota

My wife and I moved to this state on a whim over a year ago now and it may well have been the best decision we have ever made. As I am looking out my window at the snow dusted trees and and grass I am reminded of the beauty of this state.

While our home state of Nebraska gets snow it is not the same kind of snow as what Minnesota receives. Here the snow are great big fluffy flakes that fall lazily to the ground and rest there just to be played with by the kids in the neighborhood. While the Nebraska snow of my hometown due to the wind factor and elevation differences pelt to the ground as small flakes that more closly resemble ice shards.

It is not just the snow that makes Minnesota so beautiful in our eyes. The trees that surround or apartment on all sides in both this location and at our other apartment we had last year. The trees show an array of colors throughout the year and during the summer months are so green and vibrant it is unbelievable.

We are close to anything we would ever need. I have yet to find something that a 15 minute drive in any direction would not be able to provide except of course a state specific item like the Fast Food Chain Runza. It is an unimaginable situation compared to growing up when the nearest grocery store was in North Platte, NE which was an hour drive from home.

There are things that we miss.
1. The closeness of friends. While we have good friends here we do not get to spend as much time with them just due to the bussiness of city life.
2. Our Family. They almost all still live in our hometowns in Nebraska at it is quite the journey just to visit them for any reason.
3. The openness. As cool as it is that everything is so close together and I can get everything I want in 15 minutes or less. I do miss being able to look out my home and not see another house for as far as the eye can see.

The Perfect Room

Today my wife and I were sitting at home in our little one bedroom apartment with our cats and I found myself thinking about our future once again.

As a planner I find that I sometimes spend more time thinking about the future than actually working towards it. On the other hand it always gives me something to look forward to because I have a dream and some inspiration.

So today I was thinking about us needing to buy a house where we can raise our kids though they are still imaginary. A place that would have a large backyard for them to play with our two dogs; always one Corgi and one Burmese Mountain Dog. It would need to have a large kitchen with plenty of counter space and a dishwasher. Demands of the wife :).

Now along with practical stuff that I think a house should have I also had time to fantasize about what more it could have. Which got me thinking about the absolute perfect room for me in a house.

My Perfect Room might be considered impractical or just plain silly but what good is it fantasizing if it was practical?

There would be a leather chair sitting next to a window that overlooked the backyard where I could watch our kids and dogs play. A table with a mini shelf built in where I could place any books I am currently reading would sit just off to the right of the chair. On top of the table a chess set made of wood and hand carved would rest. The air would smell of leather, wood, and books. A wood burning fireplace sitting just close enough to provide heat for my chair would provide most of the light not provided from the window. Shelving overflowing with books would line the room as well as fill some of the middle of the room. A dog door would allow my dogs to come in and lay by my feet while I read. Absolutely no electronics would be permitted in this space to just escape reality and relax.

My Perfect Room may seem old fashioned but that’s the way it is. Feel free to comment your Perfect Room as I would love to read them.

K/DA

Here recently a music video came out that I am absolutely in love with. It’s the song by K/DA; POP/STARS.

I am not sure what it is about it that completely made me fall for the song. There are several things that I think contribute to me liking it. It also does help that I find all four of the characters fun to play in league and the new skins are amazing.

The lyrics are fun and exciting, utilizing English and Korean lyrics. Akali’s animated mask during the rap was absolutely fantastic. Ahri’s solo parts are perfect. The pacing just feels so good and the video matches it completely.

The point of my post. Click the link and watch the video. If you hate it leave a comment, if you love it leave a comment.

Almost A Hero

I have been playing this very silly game on my phone called Almost A Hero. It’s a mix of an RPG where I do get to build my party and see how far I can get in the adventure mode.

Now of course there are all kinds of guides on how to most effectively get the furthest and what not. I just love how over the top ridiculous the game is.

My favorite character is a wizard who is forgetful which means he sometimes forgets that he already used an ability and can immediately use that ability again. I love all those little twists because normally you would think being forgetful would be a detriment. Every character is portrayed in a similar way so they all are “almost” worthy of being true heroes.

Basically I’ve just turned my blog into a “hey play this game cause I find it hilarious and fun.” Just thought you all should know.

My Resolutions

I know it’s not the first of the new year or anything but I feel like I need to set some resolutions for myself and actually stick to the damn things.

1. Read More- pretty non-specific but every time my wife and I walk through the Mall of America I want to stop and buy a book. Which is great, except I’ve only finished three books in the past year. So I want to stop and read about an hour per day. Doesn’t seem too difficult.

2. Play more Video Games- now this is something I think a lot of people would go “shouldn’t this be play fewer?” Normally you would be right except playing video games is one of my major was of reducing stress and for some reason I’ve all but stopped playing any of them. So this is another thing where I am going to try and play for about an hour per day.

3. Write More- I love to write. I have been doing it for as long as I can remember. Always telling stories whether for a DND Campaign or for my siblings. And yes this is something where I am thinking one more hour per day.

Three hours a day and three fairly simple things that I can do before and after work. I just need to stop binge watching Netflix and simply put in the little bit of effort. Because once I start I know I like doing all three of those things and most likely they will end up being more than an hour per day each.