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Due 11:59 p.m., Sunday, October 9, 2022 It’s been the lifelong dream of LC to open his own combination man-made wakesurf lake and artisan grocery, and when he moves from San Antonio to the landlocked Dallas area, he decides he’s in the perfect market and the time is right. He decides that, to set his place apart from all the other lake-and-grocery-store businesses in the country, he’s actually going to situate the store on a makeshift island, surrounding it with a circular lake that not only features prime wakesurfing but also a vibrant ecosystem featuring an eclectic mix of coral reef and marine life. After being talked out of calling his business “Man-Made Wakesurf Lake & Artisan Grocery,” LC decides to call it “WakeLake & Corn Flakes” (though he plans to shorthand it “The Flake” on social media and hopes that catches on). Although there are some finishing touches to be made before construction is complete, LC can’t wait any longer and makes plans to hold a Grand Opening for the Flake. He chooses the date. He alerts the local media. He lines up a dude in a sushi costume named PM to throw out a ceremonial first pitch to kick off the day’s festivities.

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But that’s not enough. LC feels he needs a bigger draw that day. Something to pull people in, to make headlines and trend on TikTok. To put the Flake on the map from the jump. After slightly less than a minute and a half of deep thought, LC decides to put on a combination wakesurf/“Supermarket Sweep”-type exhibition — a dual-sport event of sorts that he’ll call The 360 — and that will, unsurprisingly, be the first of its kind. In it, contestants will complete a handful of wakesurfing tricks and then, once inside the grocery store, race to fill a shopping cart with an item from each of the five food groups. The winner, aside from an inevitable star turn on social media, will get a $1,000 shopping spree at the Flake and a wakesurfing vest that says “Get Flaky!” on it.




Overwhelmed with excitement for the potential of his new business and his invented sport, LC decides he’ll need a grandstand for the Grand Opening so the hundreds of guests sure to attend will have a place to comfortably watch The 360 from the island-side shore of the lake just outside the grocery store structure. Figuring he won’t need the rows of bleachers for everyday operations once the Flake is fully open for business, though, he doesn’t want to invest heavily in the setup. So to help cover the cost for the temporary seating, LC negotiates a contract with a local fly fishing business called “Fly Fishing AF” to be the title sponsor of The 360. The owner of Fly Fishing AF, a college football player named MBaer, asks if he can perform at halftime of the event in some undetermined way. At first, LC balks at the idea because he’s not really sure yet whether The 360 will even have a halftime — but when MBaer offers to add an extra $1,000 to his sponsorship fee, LC agrees . . . on one condition. He adds an indemnification clause in the contract that says if anyone is injured as a result of MBaer’s halftime performance, MBaer will indemnify LC and the Flake for any resulting damages — meaning MBaer will be solely responsible for those damages and LC and The Flake will not be responsible at all. “What could go wrong??” MBaer thinks to himself. He’s fine with the indemnification clause and signs the sponsorship contract. LC promptly sends out a press release announcing the Grand Opening of WakeLake & Corn Flakes, highlighted by the world premiere introduction of what is sure to be the next big sport in America: The 360, presented by Fly Fishing AF. Various news and social media outlets report it right away. RR sees the social media posts and — after her first thought: “I sure loves me a good grocery store!” — she remembers that her friends were trying to get her to learn how to wakesurf not long ago (she’s already an accomplished rower). Seduced by visions of that shopping spree at the Flake, RR checks the makeshift WakeLake & Corn Flakes website (tagline: “Wakey, wakey, eggs and bakey! The Flake — Your number one surfin’ turf!!”) and finds out tickets to the Grand Opening are already on sale. RR takes advantage of the “Hang 5” promotion — the tickets are buy-four-get-one-free if you agree to compete in The 360, which for RR is an easy sell — and she buys a ticket for herself as well as her rowing buddies SA, EL, and CMur, as well as their pal JSm, who loves to shop. (EL quietly reaches out to WakeLake & Corn Flakes to see if they’re planning to perform the National Anthem at the Grand Opening, because she’d like to offer her services if so. “We are now!” LC happily tells her.) When the day arrives, RR, SA, EL, CMur, and JSm load up in RR’s car (along with a wakesurfing skim board that JSm found online and bought for RR), and the five of them hit the road. Although the Grand Opening is scheduled for 1:00, RR insists they get there early so she can get a sneak peek at the grocery store before reporting for The 360. They pull into the parking lot just outside the man-made lake at about 10 a.m., only to find that

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