Can You Guess How Much Butt This Town Will Let You Show?

Everett, Washington, continues to wage war against scantily clad "bikini baristas."


Hillbilly Espresso
Hillbilly Espresso/Facebook

So, what part of the butt is the ass crack, really? As a legal matter.

You see, a fight over scantily clad baristas in one Washington State community hinges partly on whether the average person can objectively tell which part of the bottom counts as the "anal cleft" and whether police could (or would) objectively be able to measure whether one is exposed or not.

The city of Everett, Washington, is trying to get rid of its "bikini barista" stands with an ordinance that forces the ladies there to wear more coverage. The city claims that these tiny stands where scantily clad women serve coffee are incubators of prostitution, public lewdness, and crime. They're trying to shut them down by forcing the women to button up.

The stands are fighting back and won an initial injunction against the ordinance's enforcement in December. A U.S. district judge determined that Everett's ordinance was too vague in its description of what needed to be covered and thereby risked arbitrary enforcement issues. And the judge further determined that the law likely violated the First Amendment free expression rights of the women who worked there.

Everett is now fighting back itself against the injunction, submitting a legal brief arguing that the judge erred on both counts. Its appeal calls for the judge to be overruled and the injunction dissolved.

You'll never read a more boring 66-page document about butts. It includes four pages listing all the federal court cases used to bolster its claim that there's no real confusion about what counts as an "anal cleft" and that there's no evidence that the women are actually expressing anything in particular in their clothing choices.

Below the fold, butts:

Lady butt
Peter Klashorst

The Everett brief says anybody who is confused about the anal cleft can just consult a dictionary on what the two words mean. Wikipedia and Wiktionary both have pages for the gluteal cleft and intergluteal cleft. Embedded are what somebody apparently thinks are helpful pictures. To the right is the image included for the Wiktionary article. As you'll note, it's really just a picture of a naked butt. A perfectly lovely one. But how much of it counts as the cleft? Where does the asscrack end and the butt cheek begin?

As for the evidence in the brief itself, Everett does provide examples of other court rulings upholding ordinances and laws that control how much butt or butt crack a person can expose in public, including others that use the term "anal cleft." Let it not be said that Everett skimped on the amount of time, effort, and probably money to justify to the court why it wanted to ban butts.

In the end … But … However, it's worth examining more closely why the city is so determined to hide the rear cleavage. The lawsuit insists that the city has been unsuccessful in stopping other criminal activity happening around the coffee stands—prostitution, lewd conduct, drug abuse, and sexual assault—so a new ordinance was necessary. Even though these other laws were already on the books, the sight of a woman's butt crack apparently deprived customers of all capacity to decide for themselves whether to follow the law.

More butts
Lanak /

I'm not even kidding here. At one point, the brief accuses one stand owner of corrupting "Snohomish County Deputy Darrell O'Neill by trading sexual favors in return for law enforcement information." He apparently was helpless to resist in the face of all that sweet lady butt.

While I'm not blind to complaints by the neighbors about all the public lewdness happening (these are frequently walk-up stands, not indoor locations) and any actual victimization that may have occurred, the city here has focused on bans as a solution, which just makes a black market for butts. And that's just silly. All the time and money Everett has spent here could have been used to figure out a way for customers to get their coffee with a side order of booty while minimizing exposure for those who don't want to see it.

So here's a challenge for readers: Which of the ladies below would pass muster in an "objective" analysis that the bottom half of the "anal cleft" must be covered? Would either of them?

Iofoto /
Woman in thong
Alphaspirit /

Based on the "objective" description of the anal cleft, I would assume that the first bikini is acceptable, but the second is not. But then again, I'm not the one facing police fines and government threats if I'm wrong.