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Monday, July 13, 2009

Does This Lawsuit Make My Butt Look Litigious?

Posted By on Mon, Jul 13, 2009 at 6:30 AM

An actual dispute over who is legally entitled to market athletic apparel with the pitch "Does this [article of clothing] make my butt look fast?" has erupted into a federal case, filed last week in San Francisco.

The plaintiff is Redwood City's Heather Langendorfer, founder of Atalanta Athletic Ware, inventor of a "running skirt" hawked via the trademarked phrase: "Does this skirt make my butt look fast?" The defendant is a company called Nike, listed innocuously in the suit as "an Oregon corporation that "does business in the State of California." After Langendorfer in May noticed Nike ads reading "Does this shirt make my butt look fast" -- well, she sued their butts.


Langendorfer is alleging trademark infringement, counterfeiting, and unfair competition, among other charges. The notion of federal judges arbitrating a legal clash over the relative appearance of the velocity of one's posterior when garbed in varying manners of apparel is rich. As is the fact that an eerily similar situation occurred -- on WKRP In Cincinnati.  

After newsreader Les Nessman ripped off a story from colleague Bailey Quarters, his misdeed was revealed on the air when he said "I felt a tug at my skirt, um, I mean shirt."

Later, Nessman noted, "I hope to someday bear a child, upon my shoulders."

Then Bailey took him to federal court and asked for $1 million per every incidence of counterfeiting. Sorry, no, that was Langendorfer. Live reporting as throngs of turkeys were tossed to their deaths from a helicopter -- that was WKRP.

H/T   |   Courthouse News

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About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.


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