Friday, June 8, 2012

Meddle with Metal

So, I'm walking to Taralucci to pick up a cup of the most heavenly ground coffee beans and water when I notice the eyes of strangers starting to dart from my leg to my face to my leg to anything-else-omg-i-think-she-saw-me-looking-at-her. It's quite unbelievable how people try to pretend they weren't checking out my gold leg. Guess what. I saw you. Your dead pan stare at your phone is an obvious cover. The jig is up.
Can I tell you a secret? Guess what I do when I see someone with a missing limb walk down the street? My eyes open wide and I stare like they just walked out of an abusive tanning bed. I stare at them and think, Holy shit, what happened to that guy? His leg looks soooo different. I mean, my leg doesn't look like that. I wonder who his prosthetist is? Ohhh... I hope it wasn't a lawn mower.
I'm not going to try to speak for all amputees but if you ever see me on the street, for Pete's sake, save yourself the burning curiosity and just ask me whatever question suits your fancy. I'm kind of an expert on the subject, "One leg: How'd you get it and what's it like?" Asking difficult or seemingly embarrassing questions is the only way to gain knowledge into the unknown. It's charming how people try to be so polite and avert their eyes to my leg like they're trying to protect me from some awful truth. JIMINY CRICKET, I HAVE ONE LEG-I know I do.
I have never been offended by people who avert their eyes because I understand that it usually comes from a place of kindness and I have never been offended by people who ask me about what happened because it's about the truth. I will tell you that I learn a lot about a person in a little bit of time by how they interact with a robot leg. How do you react when you see a different body?

Gold Mettle


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Marriage Mettle

I hate weddings. I think weddings are this sort of emotional torture device used to force large crowds into tears with minimal effort.
It's a glorious Saturday morning and I walk into this church that makes me feel like I'm six years old and my mom is about to tell me to not touch things. My body immediately begins to condense and tighten. As I'm standing a little taller in my Bahama blue flow-y dress, a seersucker suited gentlemen offers his invincible arm. I am ushered to my wooden pew. The organ starts to play and the murmur of chatter drifts into the music as the wedding party meanders down the aisle with secretive smiles because they've already seen the hidden bride. The squirming starts as I try to stifle these 'feelings' that are welling up my innards. If the tender strength of a brother's and sisters' smiles walking before their oh-so-grown-up sister didn't pull at my heart strings then the little BABIES start rolling down the aisle like cuddly bowling balls hitting the gutter rails. The whole crowd gently giggles until someone finally catches them at the end and every breath in the room tightens because the worst is coming. The bride starts to walk down the aisle and the fairy tales are true; she is so beautiful. A sweet humbleness fills the room and I'm broken to an honest place as "I love you" is promised with "I do."


I am such a sucker for weddings. It. is. so. embarrassing.

Gold Mettle

Location:New Orleans, LA

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


Nothing bumps the page views on your blog like !! I just have to say a million and one thanks for all the encouraging comments that have been posted out there. It’s simultaneously humbling and boosting.

I’m fascinated when people write comments like “she’s gorgeous” or “she’s beautiful.” I love these posts because YOUCAN’TSEEMYFACE. This is just a picture of a girl on a bike wearing a flowy skirt and backless top yet it captures a personality... the personality is the key. I truly believe that it doesn’t matter what you look like, what body you were given, or what flaws you have; if you fully embrace who you are with an honest and loving eye, you win. If you think you’re beautiful, other people will as well. Stop waiting for someone to think of you as a diamond in the rough and be a freakin’ ruby!

As you have proved, beauty is more than a face.


Location:From my bike

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Meddle that Mettle



Thursday, May 10, 2012

Making Mettle

You can find evidence for whatever you believe in life. The way you think about the world around you is the mirror of your heart.

Any and every event, person, thing in your life can become...something beautiful, incredible, magical, inspirational.

Spin the tables of life. Create something beautiful with all of the tools and materials you've been given. You can make yourself sick by eating too many pieces of fudge or get annoyed by the sand on the beach. You can make some one's draw drop with a bed of nails or jumping through a hoop of fire.

You decide.

Good luck.

I hope it's a beautiful one!

Gold Mettle

Location:New York, New York

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Magic Mettle

Yesterday, I went to the Spring Gala for the Pediatric Cancer Research Fund.

Per usual, I rushed home after work in order to act like a maniac for the thirty minutes while getting ready. Somewhere between trying to land a fake eyelash perfectly on my quivering eyelid and hobbling around on one foot as I was trying to stick 'no-slip' pads on the bottom of my heels so I wouldn't triple axel at the Ice Capades of MoMA's worn wood floors, I realized just how cool PCRF is.

PCRF is the surest investment anyone could make in cancer research because you are investing in scientific research supported by the emotional purity of a child. You are investing in a being that has this incredibly innocent view of life and what to expect of it. The will to live, the love of life, the innocence of infinite possibility turn science into magic. PCRF asks people to donate to the mix of magic and science.

You are investing in the child that I was with the proof of the woman I am growing to be. You're investing in the child that rolled cancer off her back like water off a duck and grew to run around her apartment with heels and fake eyelashes... like. any. other. woman.

Because of scientific research and the innocence of a child, I don't believe in the terror of cancer.

omg. I have one leg.


Sunday, May 6, 2012

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Insane Metal

Some days you have to create your own sunshine.

No matter where you are in the world, who you're with or what you're going through... your happiness is dependent on a choice, your choice. Your choice is whether or not you are grateful for the experience of life.

When I walk down the street, people are amazed that I'm smiling. It shocks them to see a girl missing a leg and to still have a laugh coming out of her lips. Yes, losing a leg sucked and sucks.... but yesterday my friend got into a competitive grad program, I tasted the most delicious Black Sesame ice cream and I swear that dog winked at me as I walked by him. I smile because I'm having a fucking BLAST living this life. My roommate and I regularly stop a conversation a scream the lyrics of a song we love. I laugh because this world is hysterical. I simply can not be bothered with how my body looks when I'm having this much fun. I could care less. Call me ignorant, call me naive- I'll take this crazy over your reality any day.

What I find INSANE are the people who choose to ignore happiness. People who seem to have no respect for the joy of life and choose to wallow in some sort of narcissism wrapped in a raincloud of the world.

Do you know joy? Do you know that pain can be a joy? Do you know that sorrow can be a joy? Do you know that striving for the ends of the earth is a joy? Do you know that accumulation of knowledge is a joy? Joy is a trouble, joy is an anxiety, joy is love, and joy is right and it is wrong. Happiness isn't life- it's a perspective on daily living. Happiness is not the end goal but rather a process that inclines and declines. Joy is recognizing that you are a product of life... and that is so incredibly cool. You are part of this world. You fought for this place and you earned it. You are alive. Appreciate this gift.

Gold Mettle

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Gold Leg

Today, I am wearing a golden leg.

The inspiration for this blog comes from this gold leg. I wanted to walk on a leg that was entirely authentic to its purpose and its human. This leg needed to be bold enough to embrace the robotics and mechanics of prosthetics while assuming the personality of my character. This leg is true to itself and myself... it's gold mettle.

Gold Mettle

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Rose Mettle

My mom and dad followed me to the dead end of the hall. The faded eggshell paint was chipping off the frame of the door onto a carpet with pattern that was only produced once... in the 70s.
"I've got a fish with my name on my door... I thought I was going to college not kindergarten."
"That's because they saw your grades and didn't think you were ready for college. I think they're gonna start you with the letters of the alphabet," said my father.
"Hysterrrrrical Pa."
"Oh look! You've got a nice window," said my mom as she dropped my new twin sized bedding onto the thin mattress.
Just then an avalanche of laughter crashed through the hallway.
"She was soooooooooo fuckin' wasted that she screamed into the fuckin' room, 'Ride it, ride it, don't fight it." Explosion of laughter.
Through the frame of the door, my parents and I watched two people and one force of nature walk past the door frame. The platinum blonde force walked out of frame and then bounced off an invisible trampoline into my room.
"Oh hey!! You must be one of the freshman! Congrats! Congrats! I'm Ashley, a sophomore," she held out her hand. Her bob of blonde bounced with her voice. Her fashionably faded jeans were rolled and her super chic top hung with laissez-faire attitude. In two seconds, you knew this girl had a mind of her own, the cojones to pull it off, and lady luck hanging on her shoulder. She was cool yet unpretentious, discerning yet mostly reckless as with all the free spirits.
When you meet her, you have a hunch she's gonna rock your world but you don't realize that means staying up until 6AM because you're inventing theories and philosophies for how and why the world works, pouring you your first shot, taking a photo of your first kiss, buying you your first stripper, cuddling into your twin bed because it was a long day, re-reading Le Petit Prince a million times because it gets us, dancing like you're on a stage while in your bedroom, dancing like you're in your bedroom acting like you on a stage when you're on a stage, and posing on a giant jackrabbit while driving through the middle of nowhere.

Here's to the girl that I met my first day of college and who's yelling at me now because I skipped writing my blog for a week.

Ashley Rose Yount

P.S. This blog so doesn't do you justice but I'm trying to keep this under 300 words and failing.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Monday, April 9, 2012

Thursday, April 5, 2012


I'm sitting on my stoop watching a smorgasbord of the world go by when I see my friend, Sarah.

I wave my hands like I'm waving to a spaceship, "HEYYYYYYYYY SWWWEEEEEETTTTT THAAAAAANNNNNNGGGGG!!!!!!!!!"

She looks over her shoulder.

She does not have Sarah's face.

My reaction? I continue to shout and wave to an invisible person who must be wearing headphones further down the street. The girl turns her head.



Tuesday, April 3, 2012


Johnny orders another PBR and saunters to the pool table. I'm playing with two of my friends, Chris and Greg, who don't have work the next morning; the glory of being in school and working as a bartender is that you get to own a pool table on weeknights.
Johnny looks like he just walked out of a movie, but the kind of set that a production designer dreams of because it's not set... it's his real life. He's got oil based paint splattered up and down his fingers, his jeans are worn in places that no machine wash could reproduce because these pants don't look like they've ever been washed. His breath smells like an alcoholic and his swagger reeks of a man with a past from a Louis L'Amour book.
He saunters to the three of us taking turns against the rainbow balls on the table. He looks at me.
"Want to play some doubles?"
I crouch to fill the coin slot on the side of the table with five quarters. With a push of the slot, the thunder of balls roar under the green felt of the table. My eyes skim over the table; Chris and Greg grin at the character racking the balls. This guy looks two seconds away from plowing his face into our game and passing out.
Chris and Greg v. Jessie and Johnny
Greg breaks. The balls scatter for the pockets like they're trying to hide from the light of the lamp presiding over the game. Johnny leans low to shoot a ball. He misses. He walks over to me as Chris takes aim.
"You like playing pool?"
"I love the game."
"Do you know how to play?"
I bow to the table. I sink the three.
"Ohhhhhh! We've got ourselves a pool shark!"
I miss an easy seven into the pocket. Johnny follows me around the table as does the smell of beer.
"Do you like winning?"
"Of course I like winning. Especially at this game."
"Alright, sweetie, let's win this."
Greg shoots in the thirteen and twelve. He misses on the fifteen. For a second, Johnny's eyes tighten and he scans the whole table in half that time. His eyes return to glossy as he chums up next to Chris with a laugh and absentmindedly shoots the seven. It sinks. He barely glazes at the five before it floats magnetically to the side pocket.
"You see the thing about pool is defense." He sinks the one."Even if you don't have a shot, never leave the game. See, when I shoot, I never leave you."
Chris grins like one flew over the cuckoo's nest and Greg just leans against his stick. Johnny sinks the four, one, two, and six; like a genie from a bottle. The black eight ball solemnly waits on the table. With one hand holding the end of his pool stick, Johnny gently taps the ball into the far corner pocket.
"What'd I tell you."
He grabbed his coat and walked out of the bar.

Gold Mettle

Location:New York, NY

Monday, April 2, 2012


After I brushed my teeth, I climbed into my white rod iron twin bed as my mom tucked in all the corners of the blanket.
            “Jessie, I think the doctors are going to have to take your leg off.”
            “Is it gonna hurt?”
            “No, they’re gonna put you to sleep.”
            “Is that gonna hurt?”
            “Can I get a dog?”

I got a dog.

            The day before my amputation, I got a dog. A sweet, sweet beagle named Daphney. I picked her because she had speckles on her belly; she was special, she had to be special because out of all the dogs there she kept walking up to me. I liked her because she was different than all the pups.  She picked me.
            The surgery happened just as my mom expected. Except for the night before, when I insisted on spending an extra long time in the bathtub so my right leg would be perfectly clean for the doctors, or except for that same night when I drew helpful pictures of my leg for the doctors who would be performing the surgery. My mom didn’t expect that.
            The morning of April 1, I snuggled into a different metal bed with different white sheets. I snuggled with BunBun, my favorite stuffed animal, and they put me to sleep with banana-flavored anesthesia (gross). I woke up in that same bed several hours later, doctors and my parents watched as I flipped back the blanket to reveal… hot pink.
            “We were thinking of telling you we cut off the wrong leg as an April Fool’s joke.”
            A. Hot. Pink. Cast.
            “Butttttttttt we decided that would just be a bit too much.”  
            They chose hot pink for the color of my cast. I told them I wanted a surprise and they chose the most stereotypical color for an eight-year-old girl. Who cares about a missing limb when someone is judging your personality with a color? Hot pink. Fail. Great April Fool’s joke.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Real Metal

Today is my 15th anniversary of the day they chopped off the wrong leg.

(April Fool's)
Gold Mettle

Location:New York, NY

An Actual First Meddle

Attention: This is my first blog post. I have never considered myself bloggy, never wanted to be bloggy, but by way of the fates, I blog. Here’s to the “Never Have I Ever”s of life and their cheeky wink.

How do you even start a blog? How do you introduce yourself to the World Wide Web and make a viral first impression? Oh dear, I am trying to meet the universe. Am I going to be offensive? I’m not funny. Who the hell is going to read this? Why am I writing a freaking blog? Good gravy, how do you ever make a first impression with anyone?

You can talk about the weather.

Let’s talk about the weather.

The weather channel says that New York City is:
Feels like: 43°F
Wind: S 7 mph
Humidity: 86%
UV Index: 0 Low
Dew Point: 43°F
Visibility: 2 mi
Sunrise: 6:39 AM
Sunset: 7:21 PM

As mundane as it may be to anyone who isn’t sailing a boat, flying a plane, or shuffling notes before they stand in front of a green screen with an umbrella, the weather is something we all have the intelligence and capacity to discuss. Every man, every woman, student, astronaut, baker, candlestick maker, hipster, my mom, weirdo, race, religion, ethnicity, political affiliation, sexual orientation can make a comment on the immediate climate. The best part? The weather can't offend any of these individual differences. Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield could have gotten along just fine if they had only been introduced properly.

The weather simply is or isn’t: no debate necessary. “Holy mackerel, the wind is blowing!” “Beautiful day, today.” “What a downpour!” Antiquated icebreakers build a block of communication and agreement between two people. For Pete's sake, one breath exhausted about a gust of wind could be all that is keeping you from the love of your life. To acknowledge a raindrop is to assure the other person that you have an understanding of your environment. Could they possibly recognize that drop too? OemG. Online dating is missing out... unless your computer is in front of a window. With that baby step of communion, you have created a connection to another person via meteorology. A discussion of atmosphere can flood a dry spell of deserted conversation and shine a new light onto the chlorophyll of interaction.

Weather is truth. Weather is proof. Proof of our immediate existence and human connection. Today is a day unlike any other because the weather is always current and you are as unique as a snowflake.

Being part of this life is so cool: a breath opens doors and a raindrop is an agreement.

Gold Mettle

Location:New York, NY

My First Mettle

About me:

My name is Jessie. I grew up in Houston, Texas. I have a horse named Spritz who really wanted to live in NYC but couldn’t fit on the subway. He lives with Chapman, the snobby bastard who snubs me because he knows he’s the perfect specimen of equus and could only ever commune with his one true master (my father), Traveller, the dopey BFG (big, friendly, gigantormaximus), Kynder, the child on too much candy. Ludo, the sweet deer-like mutt, is my mom’s biggest fan in the entire world because she makes her scrambled eggs for breakfast. My mom prefers the egg whites so she mixes the yolks for Ludo, who thinks she’s just super special and not a garbage disposal. And Barney, the new orange rescue cat who lives in the barn. My mom gives him “massage therapy sessions” and a steady stream of catnip to help him cope with the trauma of being rescued. She also feels bad because Barney is too afraid to leave the tack room for fear of the four beasts of Hades that chew on hay right outside his door. He has yet to realize they’re herbivores.

My mom and dad live at home with all four-legged misfits and my glorious, golden-haired big brother lives an hour away from them in the heart of Houston.

After high school, I went to a women’s college in Virginia. It wasn't until after orientation I realized I had just moved to Jerry Falwell's snow globe... I transferred. I transferred to a city of sex, drugs, rock n' rollaaaaa, fashion, bodegas, MoMA, dog parks, open 24hrs., TAXIS!!!!!

New York, I love you. For all the bubble popping, nose grinding, ideology ripping, competitive competing, coffee drinking, gotnothinbutthetruth enlightenment you have bestowed upon me. Don’t come to this city unless you want to learn about the truth within yourself and the sticky lies in between you and the world.

I really like: languages, graphology, bourbon, personology, reading tabloids when checking out of drugstores, impressive teas, Audrey Hepburn, Vitamin C chewables, quizzes, food, horses, Nabokov, ellipses and lipstick.

I have a particularly romantic view of life. I tend to be too positive. “Obnoxiously cheery.” Sometimes I say things with absolute certainty and I make grand conclusions which I know is ridiculous... buttttttt I have an addiction to “Eureka!” moments and earnestly crave to understand the world around me. So, sometimes I get there before I’ve actually thought it through…. but it is my blog and I shall be goddess divine.

Gold Mettle

Location:New York, NY