The Josh Wells Weekly, Episode 26

I can't say the alphabet backwards

A selfie I took in a bathroom. A bathroom seems like a weird place for posters of your favorite rock stars/celebrities but Hendrix is the best so I couldn’t resist.

Random Thought

I was gonna go off on some rant about award shows and the Oscars and how unnecessary I find them but I ultimately decided that I don’t wanna do that because it’s one of those things where you’d either agree with me or wouldn’t and so why harp on such a silly thing as the judgement of art in a public forum?

Maybe I should be grateful that we have art at all, grateful that we have art that we take so seriously that on certain Sunday nights, it’s all anyone on social media is talking about. It takes over. We all have opinions about art and that’s great. That’s important. That may be the best part of our shared societal experience. I personally may not care who the academy says what the best movie of the year is, but I love that people are passionate about it.

Shit would be bleak and empty without art and if we wanna converse about it and get hyped for silly award shows, that’s so much better than the alternative of no art at all or maybe even worse, a world with art but no one appreciating it.

Movies I Watched Recently

Midsommar

This was a pretty intense movie, and not in a gore/horror sense… sure there’s some gore/horror, but just the story being told, the pacing, it’s real edge of your seat type stuff. A lot of my favorite movies are the ones you watch and they fuck with your head a bit and they stick with you and you spend the next day or two thinking about it still… kinda like most episodes of Black Mirror. This movie had that effect on me in a heavy way.

Also, I’ll probably never watch this movie again. I mean this in the most complimentary way possible. There’s no way this movie will ever be as good as it was on the first viewing. I’m sure if I watched it again I’d notice things I missed but it’ll never give me that thrill again. I’d just be a junkie hopelessly chasing a high I’d never achieve again. So basically what I’m saying with this analogy is this movie is really good drugs just don’t get hooked.

If I have one complaint, it’d be that I find the four main characters to be really dumb at times. Like, almost unrealistically dumb. I can’t give too many specifics without giving away important plot points, but there’s just a bunch of, “fuck this, I’m out,” moments where no one even thinks about leaving and that sorta drives me crazy.

But overall, great flick.

Love & Mercy

This is a bio flick about Brain Wilson (of Beach Boys fame). Two stories are told in back and forth sequences about different, formative times of Brian Wilson’s life. Paul Dano plays a younger Brian Wilson who is coming into his own as an experimenting musical genius (he doesn’t refer to himself as a genius but it’s just sorta understood that that’s what he is). John Cusack plays an older Brian Wilson who is heavily medicated for several different reasons and is struggling with putting his life back together despite the fuck ups of his past. Also, there’s a love interest who plays a very important part. That’s it, no more details.

I’m a Cusack fanatic and no disappointments here. He does a superb job as an older Brian Wilson. But Paul Dano acts his entire ass off playing the younger Brian Wilson. It’s amazing. Also, Paul Giammati is completely fun to hate in his role so good acting on him as well (No surprise there, Giammati’s an acting beast).

This movie was completely off my radar. I didn’t even know it was a movie. It just popped up in my “suggested movies” section on Hulu and that’s when I learned about it. I must’ve been under a rock at some point but I’m glad I got to watch this movie. It’s another great rock bio flick to add to the list of great rock bio flicks.

TV shows I’m currently watching

King of the Hill

I just watched a couple episodes where Hank comes off as kinda a dick. Like in one episode, Luanne sees a ghost or angel or maybe it’s just a figment of her imagination of her dead boyfriend, Buckley. Seeing him lifts her spirits after going through some tough times and she’s suddenly happy, vibrant, and positive about life. Hank sees this and tries to use it as an opportunity to gaslight her into wanting to get her shit together and move out. She doesn’t. She actually makes the decision to quit beauty school and enroll in community college instead. Peggy and Bobby are genuinely thrilled for her and Hank’s slightly disappointed because that means she’s not moving out.

Then in another episode, Peggy joins the softball team that Hank coaches and she’s an amazing pitcher and Hank won’t give her the credit she deserves. Her contributions overshadow his so he in turn tries to over coach her which gets in her head and ruins her pitching. She eventually gets her groove back but it takes Hank having to remove himself from the game (he’s not only the coach, he’s also the first baseman which is sorta a dick move too) to just sit in the stands and watch and appreciate Peggy’s pitching performance.

I usually like Hank but these past couple of episodes bummed me out and I’m beginning to think he only hangs out with the likes of Dale because it makes him look like a way better person in comparison.

Book I’m Currently Reading:

The Things They Carried / Tim O’Brien

I’m off to a slow start, I’m only a chapter in. It’s a collection of short stories about the Vietnam War and the first story is the same title as that of the book, “The Things They Carried.” Spoiler: It’s fucking heavy. It’s a very deep, emotional look at all the things soldiers carried during the war, so many physical things but also so much mentally.

Album(s) of the week

Green Day / Father of All Motherfuckers

Actually, the title may just be, ‘Father of All…’ I’m not sure. I think it’s supposed to include the word, ‘Motherfuckers,’ at the end, but y’know, marketing and whatnot.

Anyways… I thought this was a very fun album. It’s very pop punk with the emphasis being on the word, ‘pop.’ The sound is glossy and clean but it bops the entire time. There’s no real slow down. Green Day seems to take several large steps away from politics and most heavy subject matter. It feels more goofy than serious but in a fun, older punk rock dude way.

They’re not rewriting, ‘Dookie,’ but it’s a solid album. A lot of aging punk rock bands miss the mark with some of their new stuff but this album feels exactly like what a Green Day album should feel like if you told me in 1994 that they’d still be making music in 2020.

It’s not too long either, under 30 min. Give it a spin. You got the time.

Random sports thought of the week

Maybe it’s just the post-Superbowl malaise or maybe I’m still bummed about Kobe or maybe I’ve just been busy (comedy, work, staying out too late, eating snacks, etc) but I haven’t kept up with sports that much this week. All I know is the XFL made it’s debut (again) and people didn’t hate it so I guess that’s a good thing.

Random pro wrestling thought of the week:

Sometimes I can be a real know it all about pro wrestling but then I remember that if I wrote down my predictions for every PPV card I watch, I’d end up being wrong a lot. So here are two things I hope I’m wrong about:

1- Rhea Ripley is trying to taunt Charlotte Flair into a Mania match so there’s no way Bianca Belair beats her for the NXT Women’s title this Sunday.

2- No way Ricochet beats Brock Lesnar at the Saudi Arabia show.

Weekly Top 5 List: Top 5 Movies Rock ‘N’ Roll Movies (based or loosely based on real bands/artists) That I’ve Seen

1- La Bamba

2- Almost Famous

3- The Doors Movie

4- Rock ‘N’ Roll High School

5- Bohemian Rhapsody

Motivational Quote

“I still believe that something is right only when it feels right.” - Brian Wilson

Thanks for reading! Share it with your friends! Make sure to follow me on Twitter and Instagram:

@joshaintfunny

If you haven’t seen it yet, please go to Youtube and give my 40th birthday comedy set a spin, and while you’re at it, a like and a comment would be appreciated and goes a long way as well. If you’re feeling really crazy, hit subscribe… no pressure.

Upcoming Shows

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$10

Fri, 2/14, 6pm

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The Josh Wells Weekly, Episode 25

Quarter for a fortune? I love quarters.

Casually telling jokes at Ghost Hawk Brewery in Clifton, NJ. Their lighting matched my Macho Man shirt.

They have good beer. Check them out if you’re into that sorta thing.

Random Thought

I remember being a kid in the 80’s and it was the ending of the Cold War but as kids, we still kinda had this fear of a big war between Russia and America that would end everything. That was the existential threat of that time. I feel like every era has it’s own existential threat, but I think sometimes it’s not as clear as it was back then.

I don’t know or claim to know what everyone else is afraid of. But me personally, I think the modern existential threat is that our lives could fall apart at any moment and nobody would care. I think there’s this slight illusion of a system in place and if things get bad, someone or something will take care of us. But when I look around, I don’t see a lot of evidence to confirm that.

I’m not sure what the solution is. But I don’t think preaching platitudes of, “every man for himself,” and, “it’s a dog eat dog world,” are the solution. The world is tough. I won’t disagree with that. It’s just that I think we could show a little more empathy for one another considering that we’re all in agreement and have stood witness to just how tough the world can be sometimes.

I’ll never understand how we debase the humanity out of the homeless population or how some people don’t think healthcare should be a human right. And I’m not trying to be political here. I don’t think the health and well being of humanity should be politicized in the first place. I think that’s part of the problem.

I guess these are problems as old as time though and maybe I’m just caught up in the zeitgeist of the current politically soaked news cycle. I have no solutions or ideas. I’m gonna vote. I hope that means something. I guess we’ll see. Other than that, sometimes the only thing that makes sense to me is a quote of Patton Oswalt quoting his late wife’s motto:

“It’s chaos. Be kind.”

Movies I Watched Recently

Joker

I finally watched Joker… and it was pretty good. I appreciate the social commentary and the underlying income inequality message going on. I don’t really agree with Arthur’s (that’s Joker’s real name) approach to things. I kinda find him very unlikable. Sure, there’s a couple of times where I sorta feel bad for him. But his personality is grating. And maybe that’s the point? I don’t know. I guess whenever a movie is made where the protagonist is a bad guy, it’s always a morally conflicting experience. I don’t really ever find myself rooting for him and there’s a few moments where I’m sure I absolutely hate Arthur.

There really are no good guys in this movie and maybe that’s the point. Everything sucks and there’s no real solution.

The acting’s really good though!

Fighting With My Family

This is a movie based on the real life experiences of WWE superstar, Paige. I’m a wrestling fan so I feel like this movie is probably a lot more enjoyable for me than it might be for other people. I thought it was mostly good. Kinda cheesy in some parts. There’s other parts that I wish they would’ve delved into more that I think they glossed over (Paige’s NXT run and getting over in NXT before being called up to the main roster- I’m probably speaking pro wrestling and most of you have no idea what I’m talking about).

Also, we get it. The Rock is one of the producers. He’s in this movie and it’s not a major role but it’s also like, wow, there’s a lot of Rock in this movie considering it’s about a wrestler who is probably 20-30 years younger than he is.

I love Paige’s family in this movie. Her parents are flawed but lovable, especially the father. I really like Paige’s brother’s story line (aka Zak Zodiac). This is almost as much his movie as it is hers, and in some ways, his story is more important. Paige had to overcome odds and herself to accomplish something great. But Zak had to lose out on his dream and learn to pick up the pieces and grow as a person. Pretty deep, y’all.

TV shows I’m currently watching

BoJack Horseman

The final episodes of Bojack were released recently and I have now completed the entire series.

These final episodes are really good, quite possibly some of the best episodes of the entire series. BoJack is trying to forge a new path but he can’t outrun his past of being a complete dick and mostly bad person. I’ve always found BoJack to be a lovable dick, but he had a reckoning coming for sure.

The penultimate episode might be my favorite episode of the entire series. And I’m not just saying that because I wanted to use the word, ‘penultimate.’ I can’t even really talk about it without giving something away so all I’m gonna say is that it blew my fucking mind. There’s a part of me that almost wishes they made that the last episode but then the finish would’ve been really weird and I guess the final episode does do a nice job of playing clean up.

I’m gonna miss BoJack Horseman. This was a great series all the way through. It was funny, dark, and twisted. It could be emotional, but not, ‘wishy-washy,’ emotional… more like, ‘kick-in-the-gut,’ emotional. And I feel like you need that sometimes in your life. They created characters that I loved and gave a fuck about… even Mr. Peanut Butter, who I hated at first but totally grew on me by the end.

I’m also glad that it was given a definitive end and they didn’t try to carry on too long. A part of me is selfish and wants more but I know it’s best to leave them wanting more and BoJack accomplished that.

Book I’m Currently Reading:

Acid For the Children / Flea

I finished it this week and it was a really great, fun read. I wish there was more of it to read. Flea encapsulates his youth up to the first RHCP gig. There’s a ton of good stories in here. A lot of it is touching, interesting, and entertaining. The book is funny and sad at times. There’s a lot of family, friendship, and good times but there’s also a lot of heartbreak, loss, and fuck ups along the way. Throughout the entire book, Flea keeps a very positive and upbeat vibe that is sorta infectious at times. Flea’s an interesting dude who’s done interesting things. I’d totally recommend this book to just about anyone, but especially if you’re a fan of RHCP, Flea, or just music in general. Flea is such a lover of music and it comes across loud and clear throughout these pages.

Album(s) of the week

Drive-By Truckers / The Unraveling

My favorite thing about this album may be that it has a sound that you might associate with a stereotype of what a Trump supporter would enjoy but these dudes are no Trump supporters. They’re the very opposite. They cram many current day topics and themes into this album and I don’t think they’ll be voting Republican come November.

I’d best describe the sound as breezy, sorta laid back classic rock with a bit of country flavor mixed in there. It’d make for some solid beer drinking with your buddies in the backyard music. But a lot of the lyrics are deep and powerful and probably deserve to be heard as more than just background noise so it also deserves some solo, downtime listening.

Random sports thought of the week

I was very glad to see the Kansas City Chiefs win the Superbowl this year. Mostly, I wanted coach Andy Reid to finally get a ring. There might not be a better NFL coach ever who before this game didn’t have a ring. Now he’s part of that club which he totally deserves to be a part of.

The Chiefs also feel like a team of the future. It probably has a lot to do with Patrick Mahomes. He’s a baby faced assassin. There’s some young QB’s making a lot of noise now in the NFL and it makes it feel fresh. Brady, Rodgers, and Brees are all great. But how much longer can the faces of the league be men approaching middle age? Time for the youth to take over. Patrick Mahomes may be the best candidate for new face of the NFL.

Random pro wrestling thought of the week:

A few quick quick asides:

-I hope WWE tries to shock the world and book Ricochet to beat Lesnar for the championship at the next Saudi Arabia show.

-If Becky Lynch and Asuka face off again for the title, Asuka can’t lose two times in a row, right? I think it might be time to execute a title change.

-AEW is killing it with the booking of Hangman Paige. I didn’t really care much for him before AEW, but now he’s one of my favorite parts.

-If I were a kid or maybe even a teenager, Darby Allin would absolutely be my favorite wrestler in the world. Even at 40, I have to admit he’s pretty cool with his semi-goth, half face painted, skateboarding to the ring persona.

Weekly Top 5 List: Top 5 Best Wrestling Movies

1- The Wrestler

2- Nacho Libre

3- Man on the Moon

4- No Holds Barred

5- Ready To Rumble

Motivational Quote

“The universe is a cruel, uncaring void. The key to being happy isn’t the search for meaning; it’s just to keep yourself busy with unimportant nonsense, and eventually, you’ll be dead.”

-Mr. Peanutbutter

Thanks for reading! Share it with your friends! Make sure to follow me on Twitter and Instagram:

@joshaintfunny

If you haven’t seen it yet, please go to Youtube and give my 40th birthday comedy set a spin, and while you’re at it, a like and a comment would be appreciated and goes a long way as well. If you’re feeling really crazy, hit subscribe… no pressure.

Upcoming Shows

Friday! 2/7 (that’s tomorrow if you’re reading this today, the day I sent this out)

We’ll have the beer. Bring your own snack. I love snacks. I’ll be snacking on something hopefully that night.

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The Josh Wells Weekly, Episode 24

Kobe

Image result for kobe bryant

It’s very weird and surreal to me that this just so happens to be the 24th issue of The Josh Wells Weekly and Kobe Bryant’s number was ‘24.’ Gonna just get into it with a random thought that is Kobe inspired. I hope you enjoy this issue. It will probably be Kobe heavy.

Random Thought

I’ve always been at least a bit of a basketball fan. Sometimes I’m heavy into it, sometimes I’m barely paying attention at all. This is about the time I was probably the heaviest into it, the post-Shaq, Kobe era (which coincides with the rise of Lebron era).

Of all the eras of basketball to be into, what a weird era to choose, right? I was living on my own and I went about a year or two without cable. But once I got cable, it was on. I became a bit of a basketball junkie. For the first time ever, I had cable and complete control of what I could watch without having to compromise with other people, and I fell deep for the NBA.

And Kobe was the best. He was a goddamn assassin. Any time you watched a Lakers game, there was always the feeling that he could do something special. Sure, he didn’t do special every night, but he was the rare athlete that had you believe that it was at least possible on any given night. He’s easily the most fun to watch basketball player I’ve ever seen.

Gonna take a quick detour because I hear the Jordan dissenters and I get it…. but I was young when Jordan was doing his thing. I looked at Jordan like some kinda superhero. The reverence may have skewed the reality and I may have been too young to understand some of the intricacies of the game.

But with Kobe, I was older. I knew humans were fallible. I knew there were no super humans. I knew basketball players in the NBA made a living beating the ever loving life out of themselves and paid the price with mental and physical wear and tear. I understood if someone had an off night. It happens. The season is long. And of all the dudes who seemed to be able to overcome that the most, it was Kobe. You just knew by his hustle that this wasn’t luck. He earned his spot, the spot to be considered at one time the greatest on the planet and to go down as one of the all time greats.

It wasn’t just Kobe that made me fall in love with the game at this time, but he was the brightest highlight. When people said, “Lebron is the best,” I’d say, “not till Kobe steps aside.” It was his throne.

Kobe’s death doesn’t make sense to me. He’s not supposed to be no longer with us. He’s supposed to stick around and appreciate the game and watch his daughters grow up and watch women’s basketball flourish and become more popular. Kobe was supposed to be that 80 year old HOF vet showing up at NBA games, getting interviewed at half time, putting players on notice that he still feels like coming on that court and making players feel ridiculous.

RIP Kobe. Thanks for your contributions to the game of basketball. There’ll never be another quite like you.

Movies I Watched Recently

None. I was severely lacking free time in front of my TV this week (I actually have a lot of free time but a lot of it is spent in my car because comedy and you gotta try and find fun things to do while you’re in there but watching movies isn’t one of them).

TV shows I’m currently watching

King of the Hill

Bill Dauterive is a real sad sack.

Image result for king of the hill bill

He’s the dead weight of the crew. They probably only still hang out with him because he’s been their friend since childhood and he lives on the block. Bill had a wife but she left him and it’s all he talks/complains about. We all got a right to be sad, but most of us don’t like to suffer that one friend who won’t just get the fuck over it already. Bill should be grateful anyone would drink a beer in an alleyway with him. But this dude has the nerve to try to put the moves on Peggy while Hank is out of town. That’s your best friend and the alpha of the gang. Who do you think you are? And furthermore, Peggy thinks your gross. Stop being a creep.

Anyways…. that’s what happens when you stream things. I started out feeling sorry for Bill. He seemed like a sympathetic character but now he’s just kinda pathetic and I wish they’d show him some tough love already and I wish he’d try to get his act together.

Book I’m Currently Reading:

Acid For the Children / Flea

Didn’t do a whole lot of reading this week. But I did a little. Flea’s living with friends, experimenting with drugs, and trying out for the band Fear, and getting in??? I had no idea Flea was in Fear. I just read the part where he gets in after trying out and maybe it falls apart or whatever. But that’s a pretty cool factoid that I’m surprised has evaded me my entire life.

This is such a fun book. I know I’m almost through it and all I can say is what I think may be the highest compliment you can pay a book, I don’t want it to be over.

Album(s) of the week

Enziguri / Bronx Zoo

Gonna start off by saying what a great name for a band. For those that don’t know, an enziguri is a pro wrestling maneuver that involves kicking a dude in the head when they have a hold of your other leg.

Image result for enziguri

(Hulk Hogan was not known for doing a whole lot of enziguris which makes this photo that much more dope to me)

Anyways, back to the band. This is good ol’ New York Hardcore (NYHC). A genre of music that’s been around since the 80’s and you wouldn’t know it, but bands, new and young ones, are still out there making NYHC music. It’s not out in the mainstream but that’s the point. It’s a scene and I love it so much and I hope it never dies and for that alone, I really appreciate Enziguri and this album.

I’m not a hardcore super fan (btw, for anyone who doesn’t know what I mean by “hardcore,” it’s like a subsection of punk rock. It’s heavier and the rhythms are louder and steadier and there’s usually a lot of screaming, but you’d be surprised to find out a lot of it is actually super positive lyrics). But I need a fix every so often. It’s like a wake up call. If I’m feeling numb or hazy or like I’m stuck in a fog, hardcore snaps me right out of that shit. And I needed that just a bit this week. Enziguri was my fix and I’m super appreciative for it.

They touch on a lot of the topics (and some of my favorite topics at that) that you hear in a lot of hardcore. Believing in yourself. Being your best. Not taking shit from others. Not caring what others think. Having a positive mindset but also remaining aware that the world is a tough place. Loving your friends. Repping for your people. Loving your hometown. I’m into all that shit. If you ever get out to a hardcore show, on the right night it’s like a rock and roll sermon that charges your soul with some kinda righteous attitude.

So yea, check ‘em out if you think you’d be into that. I went back and listened to their whole discography and I highly approve.

Random sports thought of the week

One more thing about Kobe. There was a lot of dissension on social media after his death on how he should be remembered and a lot of people came out with memes and jokes super quick and everyone had opinions about all of it, so here’s mine:

I don’t wanna tell people there’s a such thing as, “too soon.” However, we all have a different moral compass that guides us and my individual compass said, “too soon,” with some of the Kobe jokes I saw. I wasn’t gonna spend my time on social media reprimanding people though. If you posted that kinda stuff, it didn’t get a like from me. I’m sure people liked it and you got the approval you were looking for and good for you, I guess.

Another popular opinion I saw was that if it was Trump who died, a lot of these same people complaining about Kobe jokes would make Trump jokes, to which I say, FUCK TRUMP. I wouldn’t make jokes though. I’d just tell you that I don’t care that he’s dead and if it happened while he was still in office, I’d say America will be better for it.

Kobe made basketball better. Trump made America, the country I live in and love, uglier and grosser.

Random pro wrestling thought of the week:

So much wrestling. Where to begin? Keith Lee is the new North American Champion! Rad! Edge is back! Awesome! Did y'all see that Worlds Collide special though? Holy shit. What an event. I don’t even know what match I liked the most. It’s probably DIY vs. Mustache Mountain but my opinion could change on this tomorrow. It’s a tough call to make. NXT is the best brand in the world.

Weekly Top 5 List: Another Top 5 Albums I’ve Listened to the Most in My Life

I started thinking about last week’s Top 5 list and I don’t know if I nailed it. I may have messed up and forgot a few or this may very well just be 6-10. I never kept an official count. So here are the top 5 albums I thought deserved to fit somewhere on last week’s list the most:

1- Beastie Boys / Check Your Head

2- Rancid / And Out Come the Wolves

3- Against Me! / Reinventing Axl Rose

4- Sublime / Self Titled

5- Jane’s Addiction / Kettle Whistle

Motivational Quote

“I don't want to be the next Michael Jordan, I only want to be Kobe Bryant.”

-Kobe Bryant

Thanks for reading! Share it with your friends! Make sure to follow me on Twitter and Instagram:

@joshaintfunny

If you haven’t seen it yet, please go to Youtube and give my 40th birthday comedy set a spin, and while you’re at it, a like and a comment would be appreciated and goes a long way as well. If you’re feeling really crazy, hit subscribe… no pressure.

Upcoming Shows

Tue, Feb 4th, 9pm

Laugh It Up Comedy

Nikki’s, Little Ferry, NJ

Fri, Feb 7th, 9pm

Hell Yea! is back!

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The Josh Wells Weekly, Episode 23

The Michael Jordan of newsletters

Disclaimer: I don’t really think I’m the Michael Jordan of newsletters. But there’s absolutely nothing else I can think of when it comes to the number 23. Jordan completely owns that number.

Here I am telling jokes at Dingbatz. It’s a rock and roll club in Clifton but sometimes they do comedy too.

Random Thought

I’m going to see Atmosphere live tonight. For those that don’t know, Atmosphere is an indie hiphop duo from Minneapolis who’ve gained some traction the past couple of decades or so. I’ve seen Atmosphere a bunch over the years. I consider myself a big fan (even if I haven’t been absolutely crazy about their three past albums, but more on that in just a sec).

I just had this random thought though about how long I’ve been a fan. Atmosphere’s been around since ‘97 at least, but I didn’t really get on the bandwagon till 2003 (the same year they released the album, ‘Seven’s Travels’). This album blew me all the fuck away. It was incredible. It felt like this dude was rapping my life. I would spin this CD into near oblivion. It might be the final straw that finally pushed me into digital music formats because when that CD became unlistenable, I still needed to get my fix. That album got me through drama, sadness, girls, bad friendships, jobs, drugs, good times, bad times… all of it. This is probably one of the top five most spun albums in my lifetime so far. I feel like I grew up with that album in a way.

And then I listened to every consecutive release (and went back to the old stuff). It feels like each album since has been a parallel to my life. I’d hear lyrics that’d relate heavily to things I was experiencing, lessons I was learning, ways I was growing as a person, and ways I was fucking up. Atmosphere was there the whole time, a soundtrack for my life.

The past few releases have strayed with me. I don’t think it’s bad. I just don’t think Atmosphere is talking about my life anymore. Slug (the emcee of the two) is settled down with kids doing the family thing. And that’s totally cool. But I’m not doing that. I’ll still hear lyrics I can connect with, it’s just not as overwhelming as it was up to and including, ‘Southsiders.’ I feel like the music matured more than I did in the past few years and maybe I’ll catch up and learn to really appreciate the later stuff at a later time.

I remain open minded and I still remain stoked as fuck to see the group that helped me get through so much, live tonight in NYC. For Atmosphere, I will always have nothing but gratitude and appreciation.

Movies I Watched Recently

No Alternative

This movie takes place in the early 90’s, y’know grunge and all that. So right there, I was in. It’s pretty decent. It’s about two kids, a brother and a sister (Thomas and Bridget), who both get into performing music but both in their own unique way. Thomas starts a hard rock, grunge-ish type band and Bridget does some avant-garde rap-type thing. The family is going through some issues. Bridget is suffering from some mental issues and is probably over medicated. Their dad is a judge who just took part in a controversial decision and is suddenly worried about the safety of his family. The mom is working hard trying to keep it all together. And Thomas is juggling all that along with band drama and girlfriend issues. It’s a real sorta sad coming of age movie.

The music in this movie is not bad. I usually cringe at movies that try to come up with original music for fictional bands. But I didn’t totally hate the music. I don’t know if you’d catch me bumping the soundtrack in my car (although the closer, ‘My Dad is a Republican,’ is a low key banger), but it was mostly okay.

Anyways, if you’re looking for a nostalgic trip back to the malaise of early 90’s grunge-sadness, give it a watch. And if you’re looking for something even grittier, try the movie, ‘Mid 90s.’

TV shows I’m currently watching

King of the Hill

C’mon Dale! This is getting ridiculous. John Redcorn is having sex with your wife and is the father of your son!

Although, I will say there are a few, rare moments between Dale and Joseph as father and son that are pretty touching. Maybe Dale isn’t really his father and maybe everyone knows that except for him and Joseph, but to him and Joseph, that shit’s the real deal. Sometimes it’s not about bloodline. That’s one of the underlying strengths of this show. It’ll sorta throw in these moments here and there that’ll get all up in your feels.

Book I’m Currently Reading:

Acid For the Children / Flea

I’m having a lot of fun reading this book. Since Flea moved to LA and started making friends and hanging out, the stories have gotten wild. Flea was a wild man way before his RHCP fame. But he also has a heart of gold. He does some kinda rotten things, but you can tell he’s troubled by his own moral compass when he does fuck up. So many fun adventures and misadventures as well, like his awkward prostitute experience or shooting up cocaine with Anthony Kiedis.

There’s also some heavy stuff in here. Like his thoughts on Hillel Slovak (who died of an overdose in 1988). You can feel the sadness and heaviness it takes to write about someone you love and the budding of that friendship when you know how his part of the story is going to end. It’s like I feel sad for Flea but also I feel sad for anyone who has to lose a friend in such a sad manner. The finality of it all, it just sucks.

Album(s) of the week

Eminem / Music To Be Murdered By

Okay, so if you follow my social media, I may have thrown a little shade on this album… well not really the album, but the hype around it.

The thing is, I just don’t know if I can identify with Eminem’s music anymore. I was an angry young dude when his stuff first started dropping and I didn’t know how to properly channel anger (I probably still don’t fully have that mastered) so Eminem was a great outlet for me at that time.

So I probably haven’t listened to an Eminem album since The Eminem Show (2002, time flies). I’ve heard the hits and that track he did about Mariah Carey. I just never sat down and gave a full album a spin.

I tried stepped into this with an open mind. And I gotta tell you, Eminem is trying. He’s not a slacker. He could just sit on his fortune and put out a mediocre 45 min album here and there and say, “See? I’m still here.” But he doesn’t do that. This album shows heart. It’s also a little over an hour long and pretty consistent the whole time. There’s maybe two tracks I can do without, but the rest of it is at least pretty good to great.

He’s still a great rapper and one thing in particular I enjoyed is that he tried to mix it up and take on some new styles in hiphop in some of his verses. These feel like the traits of a dude who doesn’t wanna mail it in and I respect that.

Eminem is considered by many to be one of the all time greats. A lot of people in that position could rest on their laurels. This album is a defiant gesture against that notion.

Random sports thought of the week

Derek Jeter is in the Hall of Fame. He almost got a unanimous vote except for one (the count was 396 of 397). So of course, people are pissed about the one dissenting vote.

Eli Manning is retiring. Already people are arguing whether or not he belongs in the Hall of Fame.

Halls of Fame are so weird. One day we’re arguing whether one dude belongs in a HOF or not. Another day we’re arguing that another dude isn’t in the HOF hard enough. This is all in a two day period in the New York City metro sports area. We’ll never be happy.

Random pro wrestling thought of the week:

Been spending most my week thinking about who I want to win the Royal Rumble. My heart says Keith Lee (an NXT upstart with a lot of well deserved hype right now). If he can’t win, I’d at least love to see him throw Brock Lesnar out of there and have a showdown between those two down the line.

Image result for keith lee

Bask in his glory!

Women’s Rumble: I think it should be Shayna Bazsler. She’s incredible, possibly one of the best pro wrestlers in the world right now. She’s done all she can do in NXT. It’s time to give her a big time, “main roster” push.

I’d also be happy if Io Shirai or Sasha Banks won (Sasha for the showdown when she challenges her best friend Bayley to a Wrestlemania match).

I’d like to add Asuka to the list but she’s in a title match that night and I doubt she’ll get the call for double duty.

Weekly Top 5 List: Top 5 Albums I’ve Listened to the Most in My Life

Disclaimer #2 of the day: I do not have the actual data to back this up. This is all guesswork on what I believe are the albums I’ve listened to the most in my life.

1- Nirvana / Nevermind

2- Red Hot Chili Peppers / Blood Sugar Sex Magick

3- Atmosphere / Seven’s Travels

4- Radiohead / OK Computer

5- Pink Floyd / Dark Side of the Moon

I barely listen to Radiohead anymore, but when I did, ooh boy did OK Computer get a disgusting amount of spins.

Motivational Quote

“Just cause you're an emcee doesn't mean that you get to be an asshole.”

-Atmosphere

Thanks for reading! Share it with your friends! Make sure to follow me on Twitter and Instagram:

@joshaintfunny

If you haven’t seen it yet, please go to Youtube and give my 40th birthday comedy set a spin, and while you’re at it, a like and a comment would be appreciated and goes a long way as well. If you’re feeling really crazy, hit subscribe… no pressure.

Upcoming Shows

Mon, 1/27

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Tue, 1/28

DON’T FORGET! Next Hell Yea! Comedy Show!

Fri, Feb 7th

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The Josh Wells Weekly, Episode 22

I got the deuce-deuce in the trunk of my car

This is a picture of my new pool table. I won it as a prize at an open mic on Monday. And then at another open mic on Tuesday, there were free donuts. Comedy pays!

Random Thought

I lost a friend recently. We were about the same age. His name is Brian and he’ll be missed. We weren’t super tight but we grew up around the same social circles. I have a lot of memories of parties and fun hangs and in a lot of them, he’s a fixture. This is going all the way back to high school. That’s over 25 years of traversing the same social circles. And just like that, he’s gone. My age.

I recently wrote in this newsletter that a hard thing about the 30’s was dealing with the death of parents, not my parents, but just parents in general. It was just a thing that started happening with more regularity in that decade. I just turned 40 and now I worry that the next trend will be losing people in my age group. I’m not ready. I’m scared. And this isn’t a selfish, “I don’t wanna die,” thing. We all got it coming and I know that. I just don’t wanna look back into memories in my mind and keep coming across bright characters, the kind who lit up rooms, who are no longer here to bless our lives with their presence.

I didn’t know Brian super well. But I did know this, he hung with a lot of the same people I hung with dating back to high school. We were all outcasts and weirdos and unique and fucking awesome. Brian was as unique as they came. He didn’t have a style that you could easily classify him with. He was that dude walking down Bergenline Ave. blasting Tori Amos out of a boombox. Who does that? Brian, that’s who.

You’ll be missed. Rooms will be less bright going forward.

Movies I Watched Recently

The Irishman

Finally got around to this one and it was worth it. I enjoyed this movie a whole bunch. I’m not gonna throw any hyperbole on it and say it’s my new favorite Scorcese flick, but it’s way solid.

There’s so much solid acting in this. It’s like an acting Olympics. The cast is out of this world and deliver so hard.

I also dig the semi-history lesson we’re getting along the way about Jimmy Hoffa and those times.

There’s a certain sadness to this movie and I don’t wanna spoil anything, but just something about watching people age and seeing the wear and tear of life on everything. It takes a toll but it’s an important message.

I have no complaints about how long this movie is. Did I pause it a couple times? Yes. But I think all the complaining I heard about the length of this movie is a symptom of the times we live in. We’re all so distracted and unable to focus on any one thing for very long. It’s like you get Zen Buddhist monk cred if you’re able to sit through a 3+ hour movie without pausing nowadays (ready to receive my ‘OK Boomer,’ now).

TV shows I’m currently watching

King of the Hill

Caught a solid episode where Peggy spanks a kid in a class she’s substituting (and the kid was being a jerk and asking for it) but she gets in trouble and loses her job for it because you can’t do that, duh. But then Hank’s dad and his VFW buddies use their connections to get her job back and she gets this reputation for being a hard ass and she leans into it and starts ruling her classroom with fear. She eventually realizes that’s not who she wants to be and reverses course and stops indulging in the hard ass persona that’s been bestowed onto her. It’s a real morality play. On the surface it seems to be about substitute teaching but really it’s about all of us. I dig that shit.

Book I’m Currently Reading:

Acid For the Children / Flea

This has been a great book so far. It’s been a real joy to read about Flea’s adventures as a youth and the weird characters he meets along the way. I’ve gotten to the part where he meets Anthony Kiedis and it’s very emotional and honest and open and sorta adorable.

A thing that’s sticking with me is his relationship with his father figures, his actual birth father and his step father. Both aren’t perfect but he seems to acknowledge that and is able to try to see the good in both and show gratitude for what relationships he does have with both of them. As a dude who also went through the dad and stepdad routine, it connects pretty hard.

So I guess you can say this book is kinda hitting me on an emo level.

Album(s) of the week

Beach Slang /The Deadbeat Bang of Heartbreak City

This album feels like a low-fi garage rocker all the way through. Nothing super heavy going on, but it still sorta rocks. There’s no synthesizers, no nonsense, just solid song structure and nothing that will bore you.

I’m not absolutely fanatical about this album but it’s good and I think you should give it one spin to see if you like it. I think this band has heart and it shows and that’s my favorite characteristic a band can have in all of rock and roll.

Random sports thought of the week

Even baseball cheating scandals are boring.

Also, Go Titans! They are the feel good, upstart underdog team of the NFL playoffs.

Random pro wrestling thought of the week:

NXT UK’s Takeover this past weekend was a phenomenal show. Devlin vs. Bate was match of the night and should probably already get some consideration for match of the year. Holy shit, it was everything I ever want in a pro wrestling match. They just fully delivered and left me wanting nothing else. They could’ve ended the card after that match and I would’ve felt fulfilled as a fan (glad they didn’t though).

Weekly Top 5 List: Top 5 Inductees into the 2020 Rock and Roll HOF

1- Nine Inch Nails

2- The Doobie Brothers

3- Whitney Houston

4- The Notorious B.I.G.

5- Depeche Mode

There’s six inductees this year so I only left out one, T. Rex. I don’t get T. Rex. The only song I know is the one about banging a gong and getting it on. And hey, it’s a pretty cool song, but I just like the above five artists better.

And don’t come at me sideways about hip hop and r&b being considered in the “rock and roll” hall of fame. It is what it is and if they’re gonna be there, I’m gonna tell you 10 times out of 10 Whitney is cooler than T. Rex.

Motivational Quote

“Running opened up something beautiful in my life. I try to send the energy all over my body. I love the feeling of it.” - Flea

Okay, so this quote might not seem motivational for everyone. But I like to run and it’s always awesome to see a musician or artist I admire who’s also into it. It sorta reinforces my motivation to keep doing it. So if you don’t run, think of something you love to do that makes you feel better about yourself and think about all the people out there who also do it and also get the same joy out of it. Kinda an awesome thing to think about.

Thanks for reading! Share it with your friends! Make sure to follow me on Twitter and Instagram:

@joshaintfunny

If you haven’t seen it yet, please go to Youtube and give my 40th birthday comedy set a spin, and while you’re at it, a like and a comment would be appreciated and goes a long way as well. If you’re feeling really crazy, hit subscribe… no pressure.

Upcoming Shows

Fri, Jan 17th, 8:30pm

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Sat, Jan 18th, 3pm

2pm-5pm (I’ll be on the 3pm hour)

Bond Street Bar, Asbury Park, NJ

Sun, Jan 19th, 9pm

I’ll be guest hosting the mixed mic I used to regularly host for their anniversary show. Should be a blast! All types of performers welcome.

Wild Rover Pub

7103 Park Ave, Guttenberg, NJ

Further down the road, we have the next installment of the Hell Yea! Comedy Show on Fri, Feb 7th. Another dope flyer. Another dope line up.

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