Contemplating The U.S. Navel

Me, Chicago, Hollywood and The Federal Government

Becky Sarwate

Becky Sarwate
Location
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Birthday
December 31
Title
Communications Manager
Company
Insurance Brokerage
Bio
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.

MY RECENT POSTS

Becky Sarwate's Links

Salon.com
JUNE 24, 2013 2:02PM

Supermoon and the Stanley Cup

Supermoon and the Stanley Cup 
Since May 9, 2013, "normal life" has been in an extended holding pattern. That was the day that I unexpectedly lost my full-time job and embarked on an exhausting scramble for temporary solvency and long-term employment security. These two goals overlap in the slightest of ways: the fo… Read full post »
JUNE 13, 2013 4:07PM

Mad Men Season 1: The Temp

 

Mad Men Season 1
 

Although I have 12 years’ expertise in the fields of Corporate and Marketing Communications, I have historically been locked out from positions where “agency experience is preferred.” I’ve never understood this. What is the difference, I ask you, in positRead full post »

JUNE 4, 2013 10:52AM

The Best Blog in America?

 

The Best Blog in America?
 

Four and a half years ago, in the middle of January 2009, I began my blogging career with these words:

"I'd like to thank my dear younger sister for letting me in on this action. I don't know about all that 'smart one' stuff since she is the one…

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MAY 21, 2013 2:14PM

A Weekend At the Movies

 

A Weekend At the Movies
 

The Great Gatsby occupies a place on my Top 10 List of All-Time Great Novels. The number assignment changes according to an assortment of variables. For example, if I am feeling particularly frustrated with the indefatigable dominance of patriarchal ideology, Gatsby and another… Read full post »

MAY 15, 2013 11:15AM

I Don't: Unmarried, Ignorant Bliss

 

I Don't: Unmarried, Ignorant Bliss
As many know, by the age of 33, I was a two-time loser at matrimony. The second divorce was particularly shattering and in the fallout, I sort of arrived at the conclusion that I wasn't entirely sure why I'd said "I do" in the first place (or second). To be…

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MAY 9, 2013 12:51PM

Keep Your Thongs & Heels

 

Keep Your Thongs and Heels
 

During the summer of 2010, I suffered a stress fracture on the underside of my right foot, the product of overzealous running in poorly padded shoes. The break took over a year to heal completely and as I rehabbed, a metamorphosis that began in my late 20s completed… Read full post »

APRIL 25, 2013 11:17AM

April 2013 Is the Cruelest Month

April 2013 Is The Cruelest Month I have been struggling this month my friends. Struggling to write, struggling to exercise. Many days I'm struggling to get out of bed, though insomniac tossing and turning allows no comfort. It's not exactly a state secret that I war with depression now and again. In addition to emotional… Read full post »

APRIL 11, 2013 2:09PM

What Margaret Thatcher Meant to Me

 

What Margaret Thatcher Meant to Me
 

As an American child born in 1978, I recognize that I was not personally impacted by the "Iron Lady's" apparently cold personality and extremely conservative views and agenda. I cannot identify with the vindication presently experienced by the "Battle of Orgreave" miners, a grouRead full post »

APRIL 5, 2013 8:15PM

Roger and Me

 

Roger and Me
 

Not since the 2008 passing of former Meet the Press moderator, seasoned journalist and accomplished author Tim Russert has the death of a celebrity or public figure hit me this hard. I am referring of course, to the sad news of legendary film critic Roger Ebert’s expiratio… Read full post »

MARCH 27, 2013 5:10PM

The Spring That Wouldn’t Come

Today is March 27th. It’s a full week after the official inauguration of spring. The sun is shining but the air temperature hasn’t risen above 43 degrees Fahrenheit in the Windy City. It must be mentioned that the daytime high soared to 80 degrees on St. Patrick’s Day in 2012,… Read full post »

 

Things Fall Apart: How Chinua Achebe Opened My Eyes
 

Growing up in the 1980s, it was easy to believe that the United States was the only country in the world, or at least the only one that mattered. During the Reagan era of total cultural insulation and paranoia, Cold War indoctrination was barely questioned. That the Soviet… Read full post »

I consider myself a fairly street smart woman. I was born and raised within Chicago city limits, moving across several different neighborhoods. I wear this as a badge of pride and honor and have been known to get mighty huffy with suburbanites who claim to be “from Chicago,” while oftenti… Read full post »

 

Let's Do It Like They Do on the Discovery Channel

 

Although I work in a creative field, one of the personal attributes that instills the greatest amount of pride is the ability to think logically and rationally. Although knee-jerk instinct is often emotional or sentimental, I am proud of the fact that I am usually able to… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 22, 2013 2:19PM

My Life as a StepGILF

 

My Life as a StepGILF

As many of my friends, family and readers know, I made the decision somewhere along the way to bypass motherhood. A large piece of that resolution stems from a childhood and young adult years spent as the caretaker of several key people in my life: parents, maternal grandparents,… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 14, 2013 1:03PM

The Valentine's Day KISS Principle

The Valentine's Day KISS Principle
 

It's 11:00 am on the morning of Valentine's Day 2013. Thus far I have suffered a nocturnal bite to the nose from my partner JC (an odd manifestation of some interesting dream) and have had bloodwork done to verify the proper function of my kidneys. Hardly

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FEBRUARY 7, 2013 4:37PM

Migraine Season

Migraine Season
 
This is the kind of winter that migraine sufferers dread. Take last week for example. Here in Chicago the temperature touched 61 degrees on Tuesday, the warmth punctuated by springlike showers. By Thursday morning, the mercury stopped climbing at 10 degrees with brutal winds and icy roa/…

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JANUARY 23, 2013 4:41PM

Postcards from the Egg

 

Postcards from the Egg
During the summer of 1995, the season before my senior year of high school, my mother Gloria, younger sister Jenny and I embarked on a two-week long road trip in mom’s spanking new Geo Metro (the white, bullet-shaped, manual transmission vehicle that later became known as “T…

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JANUARY 15, 2013 4:00PM

The Becky Book

 

The Becky Book

"Don't drink my wine! You're not choking anymore!"

This is the latest entry in JC's new project, a handwritten collection of non sequiturs and utterances taken out of context that my comedy terrorist partner ultimately believes to be an accurate reflection of my character. For better… Read full post »

JANUARY 8, 2013 4:25PM

Fiscal Sniff

 

Fiscal Sniff
 

Last year I began writing a weekly political column for online liberal magazine, PoliticusUSA.com. Given the gift of a regular outlet for Washington thoughts and musings, I began to recast the mission of this blog as a means of sharing my personal story, a story in which I… Read full post »

DECEMBER 26, 2012 11:30PM

I'd Like to Buy the World a Coke Zero

 

I'd Like to Buy the World a Coke Zero
 

In 2003, at the age of 25, I had to admit that I often struggled mightily to catch my breath after climbing just one flight of stairs. I had no cardiovascular strength of which to speak and everytime I looked in the mirror, I saw an image reflected… Read full post »

DECEMBER 12, 2012 5:03PM

Seasonal Attitude Disorder

 

Seasonal Attitude Disorder

 


 

I am really trying to be enthusiastic about the holidays this year. On November 30, 2011 Eddie and I signed our final divorce papers and I was just emerging from a bout with cervical cancer. The complicated and conflicting emotions involved included being grateful for my… Read full post »

NOVEMBER 27, 2012 5:39PM

Citizen Cane (and Doughnut)

 

Citizen Cane (and Doughnut)
 

Many kind, regular readers are well aware of my affinity for riding my bicycle, affectionately nicknamed L'il Red, as I traverse across the great city of Chicago. These same readers also recognize a predilection toward illness, mishaps and other accidents. When these two charact… Read full post »

NOVEMBER 13, 2012 5:35PM

"Don't Trust Anyone Over 30"

 

Don't Trust Anyone Over 30

Jack Weinberg issued these words of caution during the heady, tumultuous and revolutionary 1960s, a period of American history that witnessed the explosion of the Civil Rights movement, popular rebellion against the Vietnam War and post-World War II economic growth that provided memb… Read full post »

NOVEMBER 6, 2012 12:12AM

T’was the Night Before the Election

 

T’was the night before the election, and all through Ohio
Margaritas were flowing like Cinco De Mayo.
Because Buckeye State residents were confident no matter who won,
The
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OCTOBER 30, 2012 5:40PM

Massage Masochism

 

Massage Masochism
 

Several months ago I wrote this post about my ongoing battle with alopecia. The hair loss which follows the line along my left temple turned out to be an aesthetically horrifying side effect of chronic cluster migraines, the condition with which I was finally diagnosed in mid-Au… Read full post »