Can you identify the invention in this photo?
Hint #1: Yes, that’s the logo for the San Francisco Giants (Major League Baseball).
Hint #2: Yes, that’s a water pipe.
Hint #3: Why is the water-pipe crooked? It seems to serve no purpose to have an otherwise straight pipe make such a twist.
Hint #4: San Francisco. This photo was taken by Attorney Anthony Bourget in the back hallway behind the players’ dugout at AT&T Park in San Francisco. The photo was taken during the recent International Trademark Association (INTA) convention.
Answer: This twisted water pipe is an ingenious example of attempts to minimize the impacts of earthquake ground-shifting. The pipe is designed to flex in multiple directions so that shifts in the stadium’s foundation will not automatically cause the water pipe to rupture.
Also shown is an expansion joint in the wall of the hallway. The stadium was built on four separate “floating” foundations, and the twisted pipe and expansion joints are placed at the foundation joints.
This is one example of “inventiveness” in operation. Even during tours of baseball stadiums at INTA trademark receptions we are on the lookout for cleverness (together with cool branding examples).