Circus Maximii

Rome, Italy – Long ago, there was a huge stadium called Circus Maximus which was used for chariot-racing. According to the Wiki, it held 250,000 spectators. Today it holds a park.

And is the plural of multiple maximus’, maximii? Pronounced: MAX-im-eye? Well, why not? I like it.


Milwaukee, WI – Mr. Viva informed me this morning that the naming rights for the baseball stadium the Milwaukee Brewers call home were purchased by American Family Insurance. And I wonder insurance? But what will we drink?


As I reflect on the genesis of this blog — “I am a people watcher reporting from the bleacher seats” — this renaming news is a healthy reminder that the physical bleacher seats I fondly remember and occupied at Milwaukee County Stadium are gone. They were dozed and replaced by a newer, bigger, better stadium with a retractable roof to accommodate Wisconsin weather.

Bleacher seats move on. Stadiums are replaced. Stadiums are renamed. Change happens.



Rome, Italy – Romans were such big fans of spectacle, they staged full-scale naval battles. For reals.

While standing on Palatine Hill in Rome in 2007, Andrew, our tour guide pointed out the Campus Martius area. Imagine attending the spectator sport of a full-size reenactment of a naval battle on a man-made lake. What to wear? What to wear?

Well, Italians are good at water diversion because they’ve been at it a.long.time. First piece of evidence: ancient staged naval battles.


Milwaukee, WI – I had the great good fortune to be at the new Fiserv Forum on Monday to watch the Milwaukee Bucks play basketball against the Dallas Cowboys  Mavericks. Just across the street from this new beautiful stadium was the location for the BMO Harris Bradley Center, aka Bradley Center.

It was only 30 or so years ago when I sat in seats where the air was thin at the Bradley Center. In addition to a couple of basketball games, there was a circus. For the record, aerial acrobats do not seem so daring when you’re looking down on them from the bleacher nosebleed seats.

But those seats are gone too.

Maybe the former Bradley Center site will be a city park. That would be nice.

BMO Harris Bradley Center in decline.
BMO Bradley Center falling apart. Photo taken from the second floor of the Fiserv Forum.

I have terrific video footage from the game, but WordPress hasn’t recognized my Premium upgrade yet. Heh, heh. WordPress can charge my credit card like a Tesla supercharger but still no video upload, which trust me, it’s terrific, it’s the best, it’s the most beautiful video.

So, in the meantime, enjoy a couple of photos of the Fiserv venue:

The Fiserv Forum capacity is only 17,500 people proving that we’re mere amateurs. Ancient Rome’s Circus Maximus could hold 14 Fiserv Forums although to be fair, the Romans likely weren’t restrained by any consumer protection regulations.


Insert diatribe about the government shutdown going 33 days or into its second month and the Trump non-Administration circus pulling our government apart, risking our security, corrupting international relationships, putting a nuclear football in the hands of a usurper. Super fail for, or of, democracy.

“Bread and circuses” – Roman poet Juvenal. Circus’ maximii, the all of it.

Are we doomed like the Romans? Too much lead in our water?


I just can’t today.

The Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday was Monday. I celebrate that for 39 years, Wisconsin has held an annual ceremony in observance of Dr. King.

I celebrate that if the best revenge is a life well lived, the Fiserv Forum was filled with lives full of it on Monday.

May we give our best when we live our best.

Be kind. Carry on.


Ann! Thank you for the great experience, food, and Bucks-Mavericks game Monday! (Along with not being able to upload videos, WordPress has also hidden superscript from me. Normally this would be a footnote. Oh well.)