Damage Day, FLA.
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Kip is heading south. And he’s hoping to score a job as a bartender in a South Florida locals’ dive owned by his long-lost brother, Jack. The place is called The Riot Bar, and it’s the main refuge for the servers and bartenders who cater to the rich folks of the sleepy Gulf Coast town of Naples. People who, as Jack puts it, “drink more than seven days a week.”
But before Kip can work behind this bar and face this devoted, stingy, almost cult-like crowd, Jack tells him that they’re going to have to address some of the obvious problems. Problems apparently spawned by Kip’s youth, inexperience, and rather sheltered upbringing. Problems Jack even refers to as, while looking over Kip, who’s wearing a ridiculous Hawaiian shirt, “The dangerous problems.”
Next is a tenacious day of initiation, taking Kip deep into the debaucherous underbelly that drives the hospitalities of the seemingly quiet beach town. This takes Kip on a sordid tour; everywhere from a house party hosted by a rich trust-fund brat, to a tacky miniature golf course with smuggled toxic beverages. Jack’s plan is twofold. Teach Kip out of his naive ways, and make it very public that they are brothers. This is so Jack’s loyal customers, many of whom have been pining for a job at his bar for years, will accept the hire without backlash. That is, if Kip doesn’t prove to be a complete lame. Big if.
But Kip’s arrival might have triggered an imbalance in Jack’s life. This culminates in Kip meeting one of Jack’s old flames, a punk little spitfire named Davie. And when she finds out that Jack is with another girl at a party, it sends the day south fast. The chaos that ensues ends with some important money that Jack had been carrying to suddenly coming up missing. Money Jack owes, and owes immediately.
Now the initiation takes on a whole new meaning, as Jack has a plan to recover these funds by collecting some old debts. Inject Kip, the new kid who, conveniently, nobody knows. Add a suit. Add a gun. Mix it up with pot and booze. Shake. Pour and pray. And hope that Kip can shed his inhibitions enough to pull it all off. And in doing so, to maybe try and grow up fast. And possibly earn the respect of his brother. And maybe, just maybe, manage to earn himself a job behind that iconic Riot Bar. That is, if when all is said and done, he still wants it.
Author Biography: Dylan Edward Asher, an aviation and creative writing graduate from Ohio State, is currently the co-owner of an unreasonably popular locals’ bar in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Novels include Olivia Jane Doe- A Con-Genre Double Feature, Damage Day, FLA, and It’s a Calamity, Jane.