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
OCTOBER 16, 2012 5:25PM

Stone Cold Rhymin'

 

Stone Cold Rhymin'

The gift of a child so adorable, good memories lessen the horrible.
My eardrums are bursting, my dry throat is thirsting, your timing is just so incorrigible.

Sinuses strained and throbbing, nocturnal weaving and bobbing.
Normally a machine but you got between. Now I'm weak to the poin… Read full post »

OCTOBER 11, 2012 4:55PM

The Passion of JC

 

The Passion of JC
 

When we began dating several months ago, my boyfriend Jean Claude and I wondered aloud what shape that tell-tale first argument might take. As the early throes of faultless infatuation begin to fade, a couple's first skirmish can say a lot about the pair's respective communicati… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 25, 2012 5:17PM

Cleaning Out My Closet

 

Cleaning Out My Closet
 "You've got your ex-husband's bathrobe hanging on the door, the pajamas, shoes and books of another estranged boyfriend and an office chair donated by yet another former lover. Why are you holding onto all of this stuff?"

Such was the incisive observation and inquisition from my ma… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 20, 2012 5:20PM

Desperately Seeking a Dream Catcher

 

dream-catcher
 

Taking a break from sweating the upcoming Presidential election, and now that the Chicago Teachers' Union has settled its war with Mayor Rahm Emanuel and returned to the classroom, I would like to explore another nagging plague in my current existence: bad dreams.

In college, new… Read full post »

SEPTEMBER 11, 2012 5:05PM

CPS Teacher Strike 2012: Unarmed Kids

 

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 Throughout my primary school and junior high years, I attended a little hole-in-the-wall Lutheran school called Pilgrim in Chicago's Ravenswood neighborhood. Though I don't have much use for these skills now (notwithstanding the occasional drunken parlor trick), I memorized the… Read full post »

 

barack-obama-bill-clinton-dnc-2012jpg-d5e561f722625808

 

No matter on which side of the ideological spectrum you sit, it's difficult to avoid political engagement this week. The Republican National Convention, which resulted in the official nomination of the Romney/Ryan ticket, has been followed thus far by the blinding spectacle… Read full post »

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 »

AUGUST 21, 2012 11:51PM

A Cry in the Dark

On a late summer's eve I sat at my kitchen table typing away, the sounds of chirping crickets my sole companion. I am not an individual who works well against a backdrop of white noise: no music wafting from Pandora, no CNN anchors relaying the day's events. Just me, my work… Read full post »

AUGUST 14, 2012 5:43PM

Enamored With Enamel

 

Enamored With Enamel
 

When I was six years old, I was involved in a controversial radiator accident that remains the stuff of family legend. While engaging in a spirited Sesame Street dance routine with my younger sister Jenny, was I pushed into my grandmother's low-rising living room metal unit or d… Read full post »

AUGUST 9, 2012 1:06PM

Desert Rose

 

Desert Rose
 

I am not a botanist. I possess the opposite of a green thumb. I can kill the most resilient of houseplants like cacti and bamboo while meaning them no harm. This woman just doesn't speak their language.

I am also the proud resident of a concrete jungle. On a… Read full post »

JULY 31, 2012 5:17PM

Vaudeville and Ramen Noodles

 

marx-duck-soup-dvd
 

I have legitimate stressors. For the past two months, my hair has been falling out and I've been suffering intermittent migraines with attacks of vomiting that seem impervious to mitigation. My symptoms defy logic, appearing at random times of day, regardless of whether I have e… Read full post »

 

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 During the 2008 Presidential race, then-candidate Obama showed his competitors how to leverage the Internet and a variety of social media platforms to reinvigorate the notion of a grassroots campaign for the 21st Century. It was largely upon the shoulders of individuals wh… Read full post »

JULY 17, 2012 4:10PM

The Reflex

"Every little thing the reflex does
Leaves you answered with a question mark"

    - Duran Duran
    

On Sunday evening, my boyfriend and I were walking back from a quick dinner at the local Wendy's franchise. It was t-minus two hours until the Season 5 premiere of Breaking BRead full post »

JULY 10, 2012 12:47PM

Scenes from a City Run

Scenes from a City Run 

Act I: The First Half Mile

Toddler Boy: (Holding onto his mother's hand as he drunk-walks wistfully in front a public park like only the young can do.) "Mommy, why is she running?

Patient, Smiling Mother: "For exercise."

Boy: "But why?"

Mother: "Because adults don't move as much as…

Read full post »

 

ted
 

I am a nearly 34 year-old woman with the finely developed humor sensibilities of a 13 year-old boy. Give me your bodily function jokes, your politically incorrect puns and a dash of gallows guffaw and I am a happy camper. Throughout the years I have counted such animated… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
JUNE 26, 2012 11:14AM

Bald Insecurity

 

Bald
 

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 »

JUNE 12, 2012 5:04PM

An Ode to Cancer: One Year Later

You came to my door
When I was getting divorced.
You couldn't have picked a messier time.

I walked around in a daze
Feeling crazed,
Because even after she said the words I felt fine.

Surgery was scheduled,
Estranged spouses bedeviled,
Unable to work together.

Recovery alone
In my studio home.
Thought I'd be "th… Read full post »

JUNE 5, 2012 12:57PM

The Wrong Way

 

Wrong Way

True confession: I am not the most useful person. I hate to cook and have never excelled at it anyway. Please don't ask me to fix or assemble anything. It's like I have hands made of stone. I ride my bike upwards of 75 miles a week… Read full post »

MAY 29, 2012 4:12PM

Motown Meltdown

 

Detroit
 

I want to talk about something in a politically non-partisan way. It's true I am a liberal Democrat by stripe and spend part of my freelance writing life as a hard blue columnist for a popular left website. But I am a human, a woman and an American… Read full post »

MAY 24, 2012 9:29PM

Stranger in the House

I haven't ventured this deep into a steady's territory since January 2007 when I met my now ex-husband Eddie's parents on a visit from Mumbai. I fared alright at the time but that was five years ago. I know it's rote and passe to write in such pedestrian terms but I… Read full post »

MAY 15, 2012 10:21PM

Mother's Day 2012

"Give me a blog topic," she commanded as she prepared one of her standard bachelorette "dinners" - a packet of creamy chicken flavored ramen noodles and some defrosted, pre-cooked cocktail shrimp. No cocktail sauce and the meal eaten over the sink because he wasn't there to sit with her.

"When?" he as… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
MAY 8, 2012 10:19PM

General Election Announcements a Study in Contrast

 

obama-romney-640
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 »

MAY 1, 2012 10:41PM

And when I talk about therapy...

 

10504760-solution-to-anxiety
 

 And when I talk about therapy, I know what people think
That it only makes you selfish and in love with your shrink
But oh how I loved everybody else
When I finally got to talk so much about myself

    - Dar Williams, "What Do You Hear in These Sounds"

Though I… Read full post »

Editor’s Pick
APRIL 24, 2012 4:54PM

America's Health Care System is Still Broken Part II

 

Our-Health-Care-System-Neither-Healthy-Caring-Nor-System
 

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 »

APRIL 17, 2012 5:04PM

Braking Bad

 

BikeLane
 

"That's impossible." Thus the notion was summarily dismissed by the Vice-President of the company which employs me full-time.

My good friend and direct report, a kid who's gotten to know me rather well in recent months, turned to me and asked, "The theoretical just became a must,… Read full post »