Love Conquers All Sins: Table of Contents

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Note: This post will continue to be updated as the acts and scenes are posted on my blog. A special thank you goes out to my brother, Tye and anyone who will enjoy reading this play.

Theme Song: I’ll Be There for You/You’re All I Need to Get By

Act I, Prologue: PROLOGUE
Act I, Scene I: Santoria. The palace.
Act I, Scene II: Santoria. The palace library.
Act I, Scene III: Infierno. The Demon King’s temple.
Act I, Scene IV: Infierno. The main hall.
Act I, Scene V: Santoria. The palace. Bywell: The room of space and time.

Act II, Scene I: Santoria. Underground Railroad.
Act II, Scene II: Santoria. The church.
Act II, Scene III: Santoria. Lior’s house.

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10 Things I Do Differently Now That I’m Happy

In my past, I suffered from major depressive disorder. There was a period when getting out of my bed and going to school was a difficult task. I know, I know, I’ve talked about my depression and suicide attempt many times on this blog to the point it’s hackneyed, but I always like to see how different I am now compared to how I was once. Happiness can be tough to maintain, but investing in the right habits pays off. Self reflection is a powerful exercise I usually save around the end of each year, but I have a feeling the rest of the year is going to go by fast. Below are some habits I’ve noticed I implemented in my life when I started to become a more cheerful person. The best time for me to be happy is NOW!

 

Abide by the Golden Rule

Jesus

You know that saying you heard when you were a kid, “Treat others how you want to be treated.” Well, happy people truly embody this concept. The only times you will see me not is when people try me. Sorry, but I don’t have time for disrespect or people who think it’s a good idea to make others feel bad unwarranted. I like to treat others with respect. I want to be sensitive to the thoughts and feelings of other people. My brother has helped make me become a more compassionate human being. So I’ll continue to treat others as human beings until they give me a reason not to.

 

Partake in acts of kindness

business-meeting-outdoors
“I think hiring a stripper for our boss’ birthday party is a good idea, Michael! I’m sure he’ll love it!”

When I was playing Sm4sh at my university’s breezeway with some people, I was wearing this shirt and a number of people passing through let me know they liked it. Naturally I smiled and said “thank you” every time. They didn’t have to take the time out of their day to say it, but they did, and I felt good about it. If something like that makes me feel good, I think I can have an idea how people feel when I say or do something nice for them. What’s even better about partaking in kindness is that not only do I feel better, but so will people receiving the act of kindness. How extraordinary is that? To me, the way you treat others is a strong indicator of how you feel about yourself. So if you’re someone who has an incessant need to put others down in an attempt to gain attention, validation, or happiness, you’re grosser than a raccoon and it shows how jealous and unhappy you are. Happy people have a lot to share, and one of those things is happiness. There is no such thing as “too much good”.

 

Spend money on others

kuzco

The above gif was me for a good chunk of my life. There was a time I was quite selfish and parsimonious with my money. I can’t exactly pinpoint why I had a change of heart, but I’m guessing it’s because when I started to appreciate those around me more, I know they deserve the best too! Research shows that spending money on other people makes you much happier than spending it on yourself. This July, I was able to have just about all of my family member’s birthday and Christmas presents already ordered and paid for. I’m not saying this as a way to brag about how much money I have, or my altruistic activities, I’m saying it as a reminder to myself I’ve come a long way. Who says money can’t buy happiness?

 

Surround myself with other happy people

K-On

“Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher”. — Oprah Winfrey

I found out it’s true, misery does love company. Unhappy people gravitate toward others who share their negative sentiments. No offense to all the purposefully negative people out there, but I’m not going to join your pity party so that you can feel better about yourself. You all are boring and draining as hell, and nowhere near as complex or interesting as you think you are. On the flip side, happiness shares its light and spreads through people. Now that I have friendships that are uplifting, supportive, deep, and loving, with people interested in my betterment, I’m on track to my own enlightenment. When it comes to relationships, we are greatly influenced whether we like it or not, by those closest to us. Since I know which people increase my happiness I continue to nurture those relationships.

 

Take responsibility for what I do

I’m not perfect, and you know what, fella? I’m perfectly aware of that. When I mess up, I admit it. I’m not the first and I won’t be the last who has fallen short when it comes to personal behavior. I can’t learn from my mistakes if I can’t acknowledge I’ve made them! And if I don’t learn from my mistakes, I’m doomed to repeat them. I’m done generating excuses and blaming others why things aren’t going my way. Focusing on learning from what went wrong will help me turn a mistake into something productive. When something goes wrong, I consider it an opportunity to grow and become an even better version of yourself.

 

Don’t take myself so seriously

Why so serious? Besides mistakes, I’ve done some stuff people would consider embarrassing (I don’t want to call them “embarrassing” myself ’cause to me, the word implies I care what others think), stupid and ridiculous. I don’t plan on discussing any of them on my blog because I’d rather save my anecdotes for my vlog, but anyway, I’m able to take what happens to me in stride and move on. No need to dwell on the minor inconveniences and issues.

Okay, I’ll give a recent incident: I was at my university’s gym and I was running on one of the treadmills. While I was trying to hit my 2.5 mile run for the day, I had a sudden urge to fart. I didn’t want to let it rip though because all of the treadmills were also occupied. I tried my best to silently emit the gas and when I did I was relieved. Unfortunately, this was one of those “silent but violent” type of farts and this one did not smell like my protein shakes. I was hoping for the rest of my run everyone’s nostrils were not tortured by the malodorous stench in the air.

The point I’m trying to make is if I can’t find the humor in the less than positive situations in my life, I can only imagine I would be spending a large portion of it in misery.

 

Express gratitude 

Gratitude

Being grateful for the goodness that is already evident in my life will bring a deeper sense of happiness. During the day, I always take a second to stop and be grateful for the small stuff. And in the long run, it really helped increase my happiness. Whether it’s a friendly cashier asking how my day is or another collegian holding the door so I don’t have to get my student ID out, there are plenty of opportunities to stop and appreciate the little things.

 

I get enough sleep

Holo

I can’t stress enough about the importance of sleep to maintain my mood, focus, and self-control. My energy, attention, and memory are all affected when I don’t get my handsome sleep. When I feel groggy, tired, or sick it’s hard for me to put forth my best effort. Sleep deprivation is known to raise stress levels and I feel like being less productive at work and school if I don’t catch enough Zs. I make sleep a priority, because it makes me feel invigorated and I know how yucky I feel when I’m sleep deprived.

 

I’m happy for other people’s success 

Winner

I don’t just celebrate my own accomplishments, I also make sure to revel in the success of others. Some people have the wrong idea that in order for there to be a winner, there has to be a loser. When in actuality, everyone can win! It’s way better to celebrate the success of others instead of being jealous that their success is not my own. Envy, bitterness, and being a hater never got anyone anywhere. Everything is not always about me and there are opportunities for others to shine in the spotlight.

 

Show signs of being happy

Jim Carrey

Think about it. Unhappy people don’t tend to look happy. I think every thing I listed show I am indeed a high-spirited person. People who know me personally have a mental image of me smiling, laughing, having a good time and enjoying life. If someone were to ask me the question “Are you happy?” I can respond with a resounding “Yes” and I wouldn’t have any doubt in my mind.

Hip Hop Just Turned 30: The 25 Best Charles Hamilton Songs

CH

Happy birthday, Mr. Hamilton! Your music has kept me going since 2008. I laughed, I cried, and I heard something that changed my life. I can’t even imagine my mental state or if I’d still be alive if I never listened to you, you’ve gotten me through so much and your music has always been there for me. Honestly, it’s hard to condense a lifetime’s worth of catalog into 25 songs. Charles Hamilton showed there isn’t a limit to what can be said in music. He virtually touched on every subject from drug use, Sonic the Hedgehog, music braggadocio, suicide, injustice, death, ex-girlfriends… if it was worth writing a song about, Charles did. I tried to include familiar tracks whilst adding some of my personal favorites. This is the definitive list of The 25 Best Charles Hamilton Songs. Listed in no particular order because I am bad with numbers. Thank you for everything, Charles Hamilton!

 

Brooklyn Girls

“Only I can get away with something like this!”. Hm, indeed. Perhaps the most recognizable Charles Hamilton track of all time. “Brooklyn Girls” possessed everything you’d expect in a commercial hit: catchy hook, euphonious beat, smooth flow and affable lyrics. Those pink Dre Beats in the video are friggin’ fire!

 

Bruce Almighty (Moon Outta the Sky)

Another Charles Hamilton masterpiece. I respect the hell out of the samples (he sampled one of my favorite childhood movies). Pure intelligent emotion and music like this is the reason CH evokes such inspiration for StarCHasers. I will admit, I teared up when he starts singing. You can tell this man put his heart and soul into this song.

 

Wrist Music

This song holds high sentimental value for me because I got my semicolon tattoo on my wrist whilst listening to this song on repeat. What starts out as a heartfelt and brooding song about depression, self-loathing and self-harm is sprinkled with glimmers of hope with lines such as “the scum of the Earth have a gooey glow” and “I’m the man now, on some Mega shit/Niggas always wanna bite, on some Tera shit/But they walk away broke on some beggar shit/I walk away with hope, on some better shit”.

 

Lacey Duvalle

…………All I’m going to say about this song is God bless anyone who knew who Lacey Duvalle was before Charles Hamilton made a song about her, lol.

 

Writing in the Sky (Bonus)

This album closer was where according to Charles himself, he “found out God was a woman”. But for me, this was the song where I started to think “Maybe… life is alright and… everything will be okay” back in early 2009. The drums and sample are amazing, even my mom loves hearing this song as we sing along whenever we hear it in the car (I’m pretty sure she’s heard the sample).

 

Most Likely to Succeed 

I’m convinced there isn’t anything Charles can’t sample and make it great. The last verse is godly. This song is a perfect example of CH’s unique production skills and lyricism.

 

The Bermuda Triangle

Charles Hamilton freely admitted many times that J Dilla is a huge influence on his work as a producer. All the songs on the tribute project And Then They Played Dilla are great, and this is the highlight and standout moment for me. CH trades bars with SHow TuFli and Yung Nate and the upshot is pure perfection. It definitely seemed like they all had fun whilst recording their verses.

 

New York Raining

I don’t think there is anyone who does love songs better than Charles. This was the first single with his new record label, Republic Records and was featured on the Fox TV show Empire. I’ll always root for my favorite rapper so it felt unreal for something like this to come out when it did. I’m glad he’s in a better place not only with his career, but his life.

 

New Girlfriend Music

This tender love song makes me feel like I’m in love and the funny thing is I’m not in a long-term relationship and have no intention to be when I’m attending university, lol. Charles Hamilton’s flow here is like kinder chocolate and makes sense considering the sweet topic he’s rapping/singing about. I know he’s no Freddie Mercury, but Charles Hamilton’s singing has always been easy on the ears.

 

Cable in the Classroom

If I were to have a son, his middle name would be Charles. And if I had to pick a verse to represent rap as a whole, it would be the second verse on this track. “Cable in the Classroom” is probably, lyrically, the best rapping anyone’s ever done. There’s a lot of layers, references and clever wordplay that can go over your head if you’re just breezing through, but I think with this song CH is someone you’d give your full, undivided attention to.

 

Correct

“A good night’s sleep is all I care about”. That line always stood out to me for some reason. CH puts his heart out and raps about police violence and I absolutely love the hook.

 

Choices (A Wave for Alex)

For all my money, this is the best Charles Hamilton song. The whole backstory to this song makes it even more heartbreaking. This beautiful song serves as a reminder how precious and short life is and how even the simplest of choices can have a big effect on us.

 

Loser

Cocky Charles Hamilton is best Charles Hamilton. He has the music abilities to be exactly that though so it’s all good. A lot of notable and quotable lines in this song like the first few lines and he eventually comes in with one of the most inspirational choruses I can think of. “I once was a loser/Now I’m older still the same loser/That’s why I look so different to ya/You see the past I see the future”.

 

November 10th

A good song, but let’s be honest here, the video is quite silly. And no, it’s not because this video conveys his Sonic obsession (I have a Tails tattoo myself), but because of the faces he makes throughout it. Musically, CH glides over an upbeat instrumental that samples a familiar Sonic stage. This was probably his second biggest hit mostly because it was accompanied by the above video. Seriously, why doesn’t he make more music videos?

 

Enter the Hedgehog

Speaking of Sonic, his whole Sonic the Hamilton project was filled with samples from the series. For anyone who wants at least to understand a part of Charles’ worldview most people would point you to The Pink Lavalamp, but if you were to ask me I’ll point you to Sonic the Hamilton. The first track is this one where he raps and melancholically sings over a Sonic ’06 instrumental. “My only competition is time. In my mind time is a crime I’m being punished for all the time”. Gotdamn, talk about brilliant. I remember taking my first LSD trip while listening to this and I finally understood what it meant to be “in the zone”. I listen to this song on a daily basis.

 

Friendly Reminder/Mop-N-Glo

“But I visited a Genesis via an Exodus”. I’m embarrassed to admit it took me awhile for me to get that line. These type of projects of his are really great because he usually only samples the artist and the artist in question on At Most I’m Just… is his favorite band Incubus. The way he samples is incredible because I initially couldn’t even tell he used an Incubus beat.

 

Rosado

Meditation type of music. An ode to his (and mine) favorite color, pink. I’m not sure if he made this a calming song on purpose since pink is considered to have a calming effect.

 

I’ll Be Around (Outro) 

Because I have a family I love and friends I adore, these type of songs are the ones I love the most. “People never get the flowers while they can still smell ’em”, but that quote doesn’t apply here. He puts everything out there and lets the people in his life know how much he cares about them. Society tells us men aren’t supposed to cry, but CH gets emotional here because those who left a positive impression on him are more important than what society thinks. I only make beats, but if I ever put my vocals on any of my songs, I’d like to make a song like this for my family and friends.

 

Starchasers

Anyone reading this, will now have a better idea how I got my username and alias. When I first heard this song my reaction went from 😕 to :l to 🙂 to 😀

 

Ambitions of Musicians

I remember when people would rap over the “Ambitionz Az A Ridah” beat, but Charles did it best!

 

Every Now And Then

This is SUCH a feel good song and a half. 🙂

 

The One I Need

Charles isn’t just a rapper and song writer, he’s also a music producer. Sometimes, songs don’t need vocals in order to be a dulcet tune. This is easily my favorite beat he’s made so far and made me want to start producing.

 

Simone

Before Drake (who sucks, sorry, Charles ’cause he does) rapped about ex-girlfriends, CH did it first and better. Here, he flips a Kanye West track and proceeds to tell a tale about a woman who he has been mentioned a number of times before in his songs.

 

Re-Anna

There was a time when Charles was madly in love with Rihanna. It’s kind of funny ’cause I can relate to being infatuated with someone more famous than myself (Nicki Minaj). The Well Isn’t This Awkward project was all kinds of ambitious and amazing. Despite the title, he samples Fleetwood Mac’s “Rihannon” and not a Rihanna song. This is the type of love song I’d like to make for my special someone. *Sigh*

 

Nah Dead Ass

Compared to all the other tracks on my list, Charles is pretty tame here. This song feels more like he’s having a conversation with the listener than anything else. It may not bump as hard as the others tracks on this list, but I believe it aged well and is one of those hidden (and underrated) gems in his discography. “I will give you my all, as long as my all is more than enough for you”. Those lines had me crying because that’s what I want to be able to do for everyone in my life right now and forever.

 

 

And that’s my list! Yeah, yeah, I already know. Anyone who’s a fan of Charles Hamilton isn’t going to agree with everything on this list because certain fan favorites will be left out. Like I said at the beginning, it’s quite difficult to make a list of the best songs he’s produced when he has over ?k+ songs in circulation. I actually like how my list turned out though. If you must know, my favorite Charles Hamilton song is the one where he raps. Music is the only love!

Still Happy & Sad…

But what’s a fella to do? lol. I doubt this “happy and sad at the same time” feeling will abate anytime soon. I’d rather be sad than depressed, of course. My sadness feels a lot more “filling” than my depression ever did. I hope my depression never comes back. Right now, it’d be really awkward if it did.

I need to make sure I keep cherishing everyone in my life. I love them and they love me and we’re not going to be on this planet forever. They or I can be gone the next day. I’d like to let any of my readers know, if I haven’t made a post on my blog within a 3 week span and didn’t give any warning I wouldn’t be active, then you can correctly assume I’m dead. I’ve been talking to you all more often and I’m happy about that. Thank you for following my blog!

I’m happy because I can spend my limited time on Earth with the people I love, but I’m sad because tomorrow isn’t promised to anybody. The people I know who are dead can attest to that. My niece’s happiness and safety are the most important things I care about.

I’m sure I said it before, but I’ll say it again… to anyone reading this: make sure you let the people in your life know you appreciate them. Hit them up, check on them, ask them how they’ve been, tell them you love them, tell them you miss them, ask them to hang out or something. Spend time with them. Like my brother said “When you’re living your life someone else is living theirs”. Other people’s lives don’t stop just because they’re not in your peripheral vision. They gain new experiences and memories just like you do. Don’t be too busy with your life because they can end up losing theirs and be out of yours for good. And even though I love playing The Sims, unlike those virtually simulated people, we can’t interact or socialize with the dead.

 

Okay, I’ll try not to sound so grim in the future. I’ll end this post with a Childish Gambino song I’ve been having on repeat. Take care, everyone!

“I Love Emilia”

Emilia

If I listen very carefully, I can hear the Rem stans with their torches and pitchforks. The waifu wars will never cease, I know this is a pretty controversial opinion especially considering how rancorous the Rem fan base can be towards Emilia’s character. However, that’s exactly why I’m writing this post. Before I start, I’d like to note I don’t dislike Rem, but I’m an Emilia guy. Please don’t send your waifu after me, I can only run a mile and a half without stopping and I’m not all that confident with my reflexes.

Emilia is a character who tends to be overshadowed by Rem even though she’s the main heroine and the one the main character wants to be with. While this post can be seen as a Emilia > Rem post, it’s honestly more of why I like Emilia as a character. With that being said, here’s why.

 

Character design

Emilia and Pack

When I started watching Re: Zero, I thought Emilia had one of the best character designs I’ve seen in an anime in recent memory. Good character designs for me are the ones where I’m thinking “Mayne, I wish I could’ve thought of that first”. Being an illustrator and making created superstars in WWF/E games, I know how character design can be a tricky thing to master. It’s one of those tasks that seem very simple when I look at them from afar and then turn out to be quite difficult when I try my hand out at them for the first time. For me, her design is instantly recognizable at first glance. Even Subaru was enthralled by her looks when he first saw her. I would say her most unique feature would be her eyes, even though they’re what anyone would expect from anime, her irises and pupils are different from all the other characters. I want to say this is because she’s a half-elf, but I can’t say with 100% certainty.

 

Nice and nonjudgmental

Emilia-tan

I’m going to be honest, the whole Rem falling in love with Subaru didn’t work for me. It made little sense how Subaru went from her most despised person to her most cherished one. She killed the guy twice because he was supposedly part of the Witch’s Cult (despite having no evidence of this). In the first episode, Subaru gets his butt kicked by some hoodlums when then, Emilia comes in to save the day. Even though she had more important things to do, she decided to stop and help a total stranger. That makes a pretty good impression and it left an impact on Subaru who had just been summoned into a different world. Now based on what I said about Rem, try to imagine her doing that before her character did a 180. Emilia’s character has been more consistent, she’s always been slow to anger and quick to forgive and considering how annoying and obnoxious Subaru can get, she’s definitely the patient type as well.

 

This hoodie thingy

Hoody

Trying to inject some levity in this post, I would own one of these hoodies if they were sold.

 

Her dream

Emilia

She’s got my vote. Emila has shown throughout the series she’s a congenial and magnanimous character through and through. She’s the idealistic type, as seen with her speech when asked why she should become the 42nd ruler of the Kingdom of Lugnica. Her idealistic way of thinking is based from her reality, her lineage, her experiences and what she observed in her life so far. She’s a visionary, you can accuse her of looking through rose-tinted glasses when, in fact, she simply “sees” the end goal and truly believes there is a way to get there. Of course, that isn’t enough, she needs to be willing to roll-up her sleeves and engage in the hard work the execution will entail. As a leader and based on her character, her thinking would start with the question: “How can things be better?”. I find it interesting to know what she would do to accomplish this aspiration. I will confess, I might love and laud her dream because I myself am optimistic and idealistic.

 

Hated but hopeful

Emilia1

Re: Zero touches on the topic of racism. Despite being a candidate for ruler of Lugunica, there are those who hate and are scared of her simply because she’s a half-elf and her resemblance with the witch Satella. Still, she’s not cynical, she’s not misanthropic and she doesn’t think the worst of people. Good, ’cause those kind of people in the real world are tiresome. Try being a half-elf who is always discriminated not by your actions, but by how you were born. She still does her best and she still helps anyone in spite of society rejecting her. This isn’t to say none of the stuff hasn’t affected her in a negative way, it definitely has. As a result of the way she’s been treated she has low self-confidence and constantly doubts herself. It’s amazing she is the way she is considering the abuse she’s received. It would be understandable if she resented everyone or used her powers to hurt others, but she doesn’t.

 

Stay Alive

Emilia’s 声優 /seiyuu sings this, which means Emilia sings this.

 

Her relationship with Subaru

Emilia2

Lastly and possibly one of the more defining facets in the anime is the relationship between Emilia and Subaru. Why is Subaru so in love with her and willing to go to the ends of the Earth for her sake?

I think their first meeting contributed a lot to it. You only get one shot at making a first impression and like I previously stated, she came to his rescue when he was getting stomped out by a bunch of robbers. Having stopped her pursuit of her robbed insignia to help him, she went above and beyond to heal him. She puts on an act stating she only stayed with him until he regained conscious to obtain information from him. In actuality, Emilia only said this to remove any feelings of debt to her for her selfless act. I think the reason she tries to make sure people don’t feel like they owe her anything is for two reasons: she genuinely doesn’t believe she deserves anything in return, and might be worried people associated with her will receive unjustified hatred the same way she does.

It takes a bit of insistence from Subaru before she agrees to let him help her find her insignia. They actually spend the whole day looking for that confounded thing. I think what sparked his fierce loyalty to Emilia was during his first death. In his last moments, he pledged to save the woman in front of him no matter what it takes. There are other moments where Subaru expresses his desire to protect her, but I think that’s the best one. I will agree with anyone who says Subaru is frustrating, annoying and corny, but I can respect the guy for being loyal and willing to do anything for the people he cares about.

 

And that’s all I have to say about Emilia. There’s actually more I would say, but it goes into light novel spoiler territory. If you couldn’t tell from this post, I do like Emilia. Thanks for reading and have a nice day!

My Favorite Moment in Television

Everything about this scene is perfect. The music and especially its lyrics, the dialogue, the fact the teacher is obviously based on Bob Ross… I can’t help but cry every time I see it. It was the impetus for me to start drawing because just like Riley I can use my artistic talents to make something beautiful for the people I love and care about. The quote “Let’s paint a picture of someone you love, maybe someone who’s not with us anymore” gets me every. damn. time. One day a great idea popped in my head which is one of the reasons I still draw and won’t stop until I manifest these ideas for the people I love. It’s powerful scenes like this that convey strong emotion all while keeping its comedic nature. Shout out to Tom Scott and RIP Bob Ross.