In I’m Never Fine, a collage memoir of essays and poetry, Joseph Lezza shouts in the dark from the backseat of a stranger’s car, a ditch on the Italian coast, a forest outside the arctic, and from the bottom of a shaving cream can.
When Joseph caught himself wishing necrotizing skin infections upon unhurried retirees in the self checkout lane, and fantasized about loud-talking commuters making quick friends with the underside of a steamroller, he began to wonder if he was fine.
Of all the things Joseph Lezza could have been, he certainly wasn’t fine.
The “fine” he’d adopted watching his father succumb to cancer was beginning to wane. It could no longer be used as a shield to melt the face off of anyone who dared inquire. All the “fines” prophesized in every article, every book, and every inspirational meme-courtesy of every armchair expert with a pulse and internet connection-had lost their value.
When Joseph realized he was facing a future that would find him standing over the carcass of an overzealous Costco greeter, one thing became clear: moving on required looking back.
This memoir is an autopsy of perceived missteps, a conclusion to unfinished conversations, and a reframing of flawed judgments through the eyes of a young man in search of a feeling. Search for that feeling with Joseph Lezza in I’m Never Fine.