A Queens woman is suing hosiery company Kushyfoot—"the first brand in women's hosiery to incorporate the ancient healing art of Reflexology in its products"—alleging deceptive business practices because the shaping tights she purchased did not, in fact, deliver a magical fatigue-lifting massage. Sadly, they were "just socks."
Also, some people think she's mad because they didn't satisfy her? Like... sexually? There are 8 million stories in the naked city and I guess this is one of them.
It was the New York Post that first drew our attention to the case. Their scorching-hot take: "Woman sues because tights didn’t bring her to orgasm." You see, apparently Kushyfoot runs some very sexualized commercials, which seem to promise big, big things. Explosive things. Complete and utter satisfaction. "Meng Wang is suing, claiming in a new Brooklyn federal class-action suit that she was duped into believing she'd get some good vibrations from the pair of black 'shaping tights' she bought at an Elmhurst Duane Reade for $7.64 after seeing an ad for the Kushyfoot product."
Lady: you should've known nothing at an Elmhurst Duane Reade would do your vagina a lick of good.
Keen for further details, my colleague Anna Merlan pulled the case and I gave it a through going-over. And it sounds less like Ms. Wang is angry that she was denied her good vibrations and more like her lawyer simply let his outrage at this oh-so-suggestive ad run amuck until he'd produced a document, as Gothamist puts it, "nearly hitting Penthouse Forum level of erotic wordplay." One thing's for sure: The lawsuit (which you can read here) is the best thing I've read in weeks.
First of all, the complaint never comes right out and says, "Plaintiff was denied an implicitly promised orgasm." Rather, it just simply says that the company's entire marketing strategy suggests you'll see "psychological and bodily comfort and well-being" just by wearing the socks. And lines like this that make me very skeptical Wang is really complaining about the fact the tights didn't make her come: "Plaintiff WANG excitedly tried out the Products over the course of a week and found that the socks did nothing to alleviate the soreness and fatigue she experiences in her feet and legs throughout the day and that she could not even feel the 'zigzag' and 'massaging" soles.'" It sounds like the poor woman's feet just hurt, and she feels she was promised a solution.
This, too, seems to be a complaint about a fairly straightforward lack of comfort:
Defendants' deceptive product description and slogan, "Massages your feet with every step®" informs the reasonable consumer that the Products will actually massage their feet as they move about during the day. The description, printed immediately below the product name on the Shaping Tights product and the back of the packaging on the Sheer High Socks Product, is therefore designed to give the false impression that the "zigzag" and "massaging" soles in the Products have a physically, and possibly psychologically, therapeutic purpose.
The suit goes on proceeds to take issue with the idea of "reflexology" and its health benefits, concluding:
In reliance on the Defendants' claims about reflexology and learning about its purported extensive benefits, Defendants and Class members were misled to believe that use of the Products would have material health benefits. The Products not offer any medical benefits or additional tension relief or comfort or feel '"ahhh'-mazing" like "The Science of Feelin' Good." diagram description claims. The "zigzag" and "massaging" soles cannot even be differentiated from regular socks and tights when worn.
But then, the filing segues into the topic of the commercial itself. This is where matters get a little hot and heavy:
Another advertising resource on the Kushyfoot® website is a commercial for the Products that has been suggestively named "Super Satisfied" and features an attractive and confident young woman walking through a neighborhood in a dramatic and sultry fashion. As she makes her way through the streets, she moans and utters highly sexually charged phrases to herself, including "That's the spot" and "So good," as a song with the lyrics "I feel super satisfied, super satisfied" plays in the background to further the sexual angle of the advertisement. Her assertive stride and relaxed air are literally show-stopping, causing male and female passersby alike to stop in their tracks to look at her with their mouths agape. Towards the end of the commercial, the woman opens her eyes to find herself surrounded by a group of excited women fascinated with knowing her secret to feeling orgasmic on city streets; she eagerly tells them, "Oh, it's Kushyfoot®," and distributes their Products from her shopping bags to each of the women.
The complaint adds (presumably after several deep breaths and maybe a swipe at its forehead with a handkerchief), "Plaintiff WANG relied on the commercial and believed in the effectiveness and comfort of the Products." I'm pretty sure the innuendo is accidental, but it does make the whole case start to read like a thinly veiled criticism of the tights' effectiveness as an aid to orgasm. Also—TWIST—some people believe that "reflexology" can produce orgasm.
All I know for sure is that the Coen Brothers should option this court case. Immediately.