Lacking in managerial skills, and displaying no discernible interest in customer service, Mike South was despised by dancers, staff and customers alike. But it wasn’t until South was kicked to the curb that the club’s owner began to understand why the Flamingo’s profits had dwindled.
In the summer of 2011, Mike South’s fortunes were in the toilet. The tiny 2-bedroom townhouse he shared with his mother, had already lost half of its appraised value, and would soon half again. Taking bows for other people’s work on bringing down PornWikiLeaks wasn’t enough to pay the bills. He needed a paying gig, and fast. Dayton, Ohio’s Flamingo Show Club sat 500 miles to the north, just off the I-75. South knew the place because his friend Tim Case and his wife, ex-performer Felicia Fox, worked there.
South learned that the owner was looking for a new club manager, and would be willing to sell under the right circumstances. South had no money, but he and another fellow named Mike put together a deal with the owner under which South would assume the role of General Manager, as of August 5, 2011.
South drove up to Dayton, and moved into an apartment paid for by the club. He brought with him a young blonde woman who did makeup. South had promised her she’d be making great money working as a waitress at the club, which he promised was going to do fantastic business once he used all his connections. She bit, and moved in with South.
It was not long before reality began to set in, however.
“He had no management skills, and his customer service skills were even worse,” the manager who succeeded South told TRPWL.
One of the dancers at the Flamingo said South “never connected with anyone, even people who tried to be friendly with him or to help break the ice. He just didn’t have the personality for it, I guess.”
South’s approach to management was to announce to everyone that he was the new owner, that he was going to make big changes, and that was how things were going to be.
An approach like this might have worked — just maybe — if the club’s business had actually begun to grow. But it didn’t.
Then, in October 2011, a club dancer named Brooklyn playfully jumped up on South’s back, as if to get a piggyback ride. South shattered, and fell to the floor in agony with a broken leg.
Former Flamingo employees speak of their “relief” when South was laid up from his injuries.
A particularly telling anecdote:
The door guy at the Flamingo was a guy nicknamed “Tramp”, who everybody liked. When South came rolling up his first day back at the club, he instructed Tramp to “Keep everybody back” from him and his wheelchair. He didn’t want to deal with the fuss or hubbub of the staff and dancers welcoming him back, he just wanted to get back to work. Tramp opened the door, South rolled in, and no one came by to welcome him. South just wheeled himself into his office, alone.
Stupid fucking bitch
On November 20, 2011, a dancer named Brandy Daniels came by the Flamingo for an audition.
South had positioned himself in his wheelchair — with his leg sticking out — in the most inconvenient place possible, right in the main pathway to the stage. But that’s Mike South — the world has to bend to his needs.
Daniels accidentally bumped into South’s leg, and, apologized.
According to published reports, South grabbed her by the hair, pulled her down to him, and shouted, “Stupid fucking bitch, watch where you’re going!” The dancer was seriously shaken, and she filed a police report. South was charged and, following a series of continuances, a court date was eventually set for July 6, 2012.
UPDATE: More on this case here.
The club’s profits continued to decline, and the actual owner became alarmed.
He decided to bring in someone to check out what the hell South was doing at the club, using the “secret shopper” technique.
The owner’s spy came by the club and was horrified by what he saw.
The club’s office was “destroyed”, he says. Strewn all about were cups and a little coffee urn filled with yellowish liquid. At first he “thought it was Mountain Dew, or something”, but a sniff showed it was urine!
Mike South had been pissing all over his own office.
The bathroom down the hall was in full working order, but South would rather sit among vessels full of urine than deal with other people.And when he left, he didn’t have the decency to clean up after himself.
Perhaps more disturbing was the discovery that each night, South would take home the contents of the club safe, and the day’s deposits.
That’s right — the cash on hand and the drop left the premises in South’s possession. He would personally take charge of all the club’s money, accountable to no one.
The owner’s spy suspected South had been embezzling the club. On the authority of the club’s owner, he fired South immediately, assumed the role of General Manager, and told South to vacate the company apartment in which he was living.
Just like that, it was all over.
And what happened to the blonde woman who had been staying with South?
After having made a bunch of promises that he couldn’t fulfill, South wanted sex, so she moved out.
When the new manager took over, she was staying with one of the club dancers, so he gave her the money to get home out of his own pocket. If that scenario sounds familiar — South cons a woman into going on a road trip with him by promising that all manner of things will be set up and waiting for her — it’s because TRPWL laid it all out in the case of performer Jessica Chase.
The folks at The Flamingo were initially shocked by South’s dismissal, the new manager told TRPWL, because South had so often told everyone the lie that he was the new club owner.
“If he’s the owner, how come I’m sitting at this desk?”, the new General Manager told one of the dancers.
South high-tailed it back to Georgia to go move back in with his mother. South tried to file a disability claim against the club, but it was rejected.
According to Brandy Daniels, the young woman he grabbed at the club, he never showed up for any of his court dates.
Not long after South was dismissed, Brandy accepted a job at the Flamingo.
The manager who succeeded South reports that “within a week after South was fired, club receipts were up about 20%.”
Do the math, folks…and watch for more stories from Mike South’s disastrous tenure at the Flamingo Show Club.