Contemplating The U.S. Navel

Me, Chicago, Hollywood and The Federal Government

Becky Sarwate

Becky Sarwate
Chicago, Illinois, USA
December 31
Communications Manager
Insurance Brokerage
I am about as liberal as they come, and please don't expect to change me, though I do sometimes sneak up on you with a surprise (pro-death penalty, for instance). Although gainfully employed as a full-time Marketing Manager, I keep my toes in the freelance pool as a journalist, theater critic, blogger and proud President of the Illinois Woman's Press Association. To read my work on this page is to find vignettes about Chicago, Hollywood, my own turbulent life, and of course, my number one passion: local and national politics.


Becky Sarwate's Links
Editor’s Pick
AUGUST 28, 2012 4:48PM

Fantasy Football Fraud


Football Charlie Brown

 There are numerous forms of sexism which irk me: the assumption on the part of some that we are mentally and physically the weaker gender, the presumption that women should be overruled when it comes to decision-making power over their reproductive cycles, the corporate gl… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JUNE 26, 2012 11:14AM

Bald Insecurity



Boyfriend/Hairdresser 8 weeks ago: "Come on! It's always something with you. I can't see anything!"

Sister 4 weeks ago: "Is it because you dye your hair too often?"

New Boyfriend/Hairdresser 3 weeks ago: "Ok, now I see what you're talking about."

A woman historically known for her… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
MAY 8, 2012 10:19PM

General Election Announcements a Study in Contrast


President Barack Obama, who frequently appears battered and weary at the tail end of a bruising first term, came to Virginia this past Saturday in a vigorous mood. The POTUS chose the swing state he won in 2008 to formally launch his drive for re-election, casting the 2012 race as…

Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
APRIL 24, 2012 4:54PM

America's Health Care System is Still Broken Part II



I will keep writing about this because I am one of the lucky ones. I will keep screaming about the system's inherent abusiveness because I can and I must - for all those who are sicker, less financially solvent and don't have a forum in which their voices… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
MARCH 13, 2012 8:58PM

Romney: GOP Indifference Toward the Middle Class Personified



 Last week Republican primary co-front runner Mitt Romney demonstrated once again that neither he, nor his increasingly radical political party give a fig about the quality of life of America's middle class. Multiple media outlets reported Romney's compassionately conservat… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JULY 15, 2011 1:29PM

Jumping the Shark

Living in Chicago, some form of sexual harassment, however mild, tends to be a typical facet of the average woman’s day. I was inaugurated into this confusing and often humiliating world of gender politics at the age of 13, when I began to receive car horn honks and wolf whistles from… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JUNE 29, 2011 11:10AM

Missing the Point of the Anemic Housing Market

Until four months ago, I had very little interest in real estate and personal finance news. I do not own a property, nor do I wish to, exist mostly off the credit economy grid and don’t have much of a head for financial statistics. That all changed in February when I… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JUNE 5, 2011 2:37PM

Pseudo Cancer

Is it possible to experience survivor’s guilt before even going under the knife? If so, that’s what I’m dealing with at the moment. I tried explaining this feeling to my friend Diane on Friday evening. A few years ago, Diane developed a tumor in her chest that began to push on… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 15, 2011 7:07AM

Hunt and Peck


Hunt and Peck


When I think about it, there's really no good excuse for my condition. I went through primary school in the 1980s, when American culture exploded in its contemplation of the personal computer's applications. There was no concept of the Internet when I entered kinderg… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 8, 2011 12:01PM

13 Going On 33

I felt stretched nerves pushing against my skin as Eddie and I searched for a parking spot on the familiar side street. Covered in a blanket of nearly 30 inches of snow, we had to be careful about where to leave our little Honda Civic if we wanted to depart without… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 23, 2011 6:52PM

Bearly Watchable

"Somebody needs to tell the Bears this isn't a preseason game."


- Terry Bradshaw, NFL Fox Analyst, 3:30 PM today


At the risk of alienating my rabidly "Bear Down" family any further (please stop the bitter posts on my Facebook wall!), I must acknowledge the Bears miserable play in today's… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 13, 2011 9:18AM

Coming out of the Dark

It was around the time I found myself sitting in my sister's closet, sandwiched precariously between my brother-in-law's suits and casual clothes, willing my body to remain silent and still, that I realized I have been taking myself far too seriously of late.


From the floor below, I heard occa… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JANUARY 4, 2011 2:21PM

Hope in 2011 for the Unemployed?


As a long-suffering member of the long-term unemployed community, I look for any sign that career fortunes are about to change, and grab on with the tenacity of a starving rat.… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 22, 2010 8:49AM

My Christmas Traditions


A few days ago, my Aunt Diane, a woman who has been like a mother to my sister and I, sought to clarify my positions on holiday celebrations. While she rejoices in the diversity of our extended family, she wanted to be sure that Jen and I were not… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 7, 2010 8:07AM

Another Job Interview



This afternoon I will suit up and take the train downtown for yet one more job interrogation. I know precious little about the opportunity except that it's some form of copywriting contract work that will not get underway until after the first of the year. At 2:00, I am… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
DECEMBER 2, 2010 9:43AM

Winter Wanderlust



Yesterday Chicago experienced its first "measurable snow fall" of the season. The words in quotes are presumably the local meteorologist buzz terminology, since I heard them from no fewer than three weather people during an afternoon of channel surfing. Anyway, the old familiar routine… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 30, 2010 4:15PM

How DADT Makes America Less Safe


This morning as I booted up the computer, I took my typical perusal of the Yahoo headlines, and came across this feature from the Associated Press:


Pentagon Study: Gays Could Serve with No Harm


Ladies and gentlemen, we have just wasted 10 months and untold millions of… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 23, 2010 1:44PM

Ep. 2-From the Front Lines: the War Against Mental Illness

It may seem odd that it was hearing he now smokes cigarettes which hurt the most. In a twelvemonth which has brought repeated hospitalization, homelessness, hoarding and police activity, it would appear that a casual cigarette might not be worth my tears. But as crazy as it sounds (pardon the pun),… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 18, 2010 9:51AM

Dancing with the Stars Gets Palined



I am simultaneously awed and repulsed by former Alaskan Governor and 2008 GOP Vice-Presidential candidate Sarah Palin's sway on the voting public. The former emotion is influenced by the undeniable statistics that underpin Palin's track record. Six of the 11 total Senate ca… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
NOVEMBER 9, 2010 5:08PM

The Bipolar Job Seeker



Yesterday, after four straight weeks of sending out oodles of resumes, using networking contacts, and applying for low paying internships without so much as a blip of interest from any employer, I scored a potential hit. Realizing that four weeks in this DOA job market isn't a long wai… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 28, 2010 12:43PM

How the Internet Saved Me From Myself



I am old enough to remember the days before the Internet and it's offspring - blogs, streaming video, chat, porn - beguiled us so. My grade school and high school reports were researched at home via Encyclopedia Britannica, or else I had to go to the library for more… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 22, 2010 3:08PM

Immigration Frustration


Three years of marriage, countless forms and $4,500 in legal fees later, my husband Eddie and I are still in the process of trying to secure his final, "unrestricted" green card. My husband immigrated from India in 2002, a 22 year-old man with an undergraduate degree in Informatio… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 14, 2010 11:22AM

A Worker's Withdrawal: Day 1


premature withdrawal stock market wall street


Yesterday was my last day at my full-time job and I am setting about the Herculean task of trying to deprogram myself. If you read this post I wrote late last month, then you are aware of the complete mind fuckery that has had me in a vise-like/… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
OCTOBER 7, 2010 5:11PM

Beating Them Off With a Stick



A very close friend of mine, whose identity I will protect in order to spare potential damage to his momentum, is absolutely cleaning up in the world of online dating. Mr. Anonymous, a late fortysomething, recently divorced father of three, is the hottest ticket in town the… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
SEPTEMBER 30, 2010 1:36PM

“Goldilocks” Offers Hope of Escape?


For those of us tired of the environmental destruction of our planet, the toxic partisanship and “do nothing” attitude that has ground U.S. development of, well anything to a screeching halt, for those who envision the steady globalization of the world economy as a pro… Read full post »