[…] iam pridem, ex quo suffragia nulli / uendimus, effudit curas; nam qui dabat olim / imperium, fasces, legiones, omnia, nunc se / continet atque duas tantum res anxius optat, / panem et circenses. […]
… Already long ago, from when we sold our vote to no man, the People have abdicated our duties; for the People who once upon a time handed out military command, high civil office, legions — everything, now restrains itself and anxiously hopes for just two things: bread and circuses
[From Juvenal’s Satire X 10:77-81, anno domini 120]
Only two things does the citizen these days worry about or long for– panem et circensus, bread and circuses (paraphrased from The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations Third Edition).
This morning on the way to the grocery store I asked Mr. Big Food what time the game started this afternoon. Ha. Afternoon. Silly me. This got us talking and Mr. Big Food said, “Bread and circuses.”
I had no idea what he was talking about but it made sense to me. Bread and circuses. Things haven’t changed all that much in 2000 years, have they?
Oh. Totally a coincidence that they were giving away free tickets to the circus at the Piggly Wiggly.