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The Greatest Show…within Five Square Miles.

The Greatest Show…within Five Square Miles.
Published August 2, 2008 by Bill Cokas Comments: 0

Took my kids to the circus recently. Not Cirque du Soleil or some generic tent-in-a-parking-lot circus, but THE circus. Thanks to P.T. Barnum (whom I indirectly probably owe my career to), the one also known as “The Greatest Show on Earth.”

Or is it? Might be time to rethink that tagline, Bello.

Admittedly, it had been a few decades since I’d been under RBB&B’s “big top” (the Capital Centre in Landover, MD when I was a kid, and now the RBC Center in Raleigh, NC). So maybe nostalgia was tinging my expectations. But the circus I saw had Gunther Gabel-Williams, white tigers, Emmett Kelly and guys riding motorcycles around in wire mesh ball.

This circus did have the motorcycles and the mesh ball and thank God, because otherwise, the most impressive thing offered up was a guy who laid on the floor and had a truck drive across his gut. Seriously? The Greatest Show on Earth?

The Highest Prices on Earth were encountered upstairs at the concession stand: $14 cotton candy and $10 snow cones. All I can say is, I’m glad my kids (both 8) liked it and weren’t as jaded as I was. I tried not to let my disappointment show, but I couldn’t keep from thinking that this particular circus needed to inject more “wow” factor into its show or downplay its own importance in the grand scheme of global entertainment.

Has a tagline ever lied to you?


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