INTA report: Day 4

The final day of the INTA Meeting is a strange one. Many participants leave early, citing pressure of work or the need to accommodate to flight schedules. In McCormick Place itself the INTA banners, placards and signs are removed to make way for the next event - in this case the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) - while small groups of trade mark experts, owners and enthusiasts make their final lap of the Exhibit Hall in search of freebie pens, notepads, stressballs and other trinkets to take home to their children and significant others. Some of us yearn for the chance to sneak into the FMI meeting. Don't we, as trade mark experts, know more about marketing food than they do?

Right: blossom in Chicago's historic Prairie Avenue district, just next door to McCormick Place but sadly missed by most INTA participants

The trade mark fraternity being what it is, the INTA Meeting does not just fizzle out like a damp squib. Gathering what remains of their strength and resources the participants, many now devoid of business cards and identity badges, prepare to party. This year's Grand Finale was held at the Museum of Science and Industry, a potent mixture of the brilliant and the banal, with chamber musicians competing with jazz and rock groups for the attention of the exhausted diners.

The IPKat's favourite exhibits in the museum were all found in the gift shop, the best being an eye-catching trilogy of fluffy yellow chicks (left), the precise relevance of which to science and industry was not immediately apparent. He was also struck (metaphorically) by a charming white unicorn (below, right), presumably illustrating dead-ends in evolutionary development or perhaps the dread effects of long-term consumption of genetically modified horse-food.

In the opening reception, social discussion focuses on topics such as "when did you fly in?" and "which hotel are you staying in?" At the Grand Finale, we all reverse the process, employing as conversation gambits such startlingly ingenious openers as "when do you fly out?" and "how did you like your hotel?" When the conversation has gone on like this for long enough and no-one seems to mind, that's a sure sign that INTA Meeting Fatigue has set in. However, like the pain of labour, INTA Meeting Fatigue fades away sufficiently quickly to be completely forgotten by the time we decide to have another one ...

Left: The Glessner House (1887), a striking example of the architecture of Henry Hobson Richardson, a little to the north of MCormick Place

On the morning after the night before, it as almost as though INTA had never happened. Chicago carries on; its inhabitants no longer smirk at attendees who wander through its streets with their name tags on, proudly proclaiming themselves to be Chuck or any other projectile name. Participants melt back into their offices, tired and happy but almost certainly lighter in the pocket, better informed and content in the knowledge that they have done their little bit to enrich the substance of the international trade mark community.

The Reebok Factor (see yesterday's post on the INTA Meeting) has tantalised quite a few IPKat readers. It's not too late to add your own comments, if you've not yet done so. A review of them will appear here in a couple of days.
INTA report: Day 4 INTA report: Day 4 Reviewed by Jeremy on Thursday, May 03, 2007 Rating: 5

1 comment:

  1. That's impressive blogging, to have the review of the grande finale up in time for when I got back from it to my hotel room! I particularly liked the U-Boat, which seemed to attract a disproportionate number of east Europeans. We were followed into the exhibit by a German lady, who kindly helped me understand the labels on the controls.
    My abiding memory of this, and previous, last nights is the "next year in ..." syndrome, in this case Berlin. I guess I see my INTA friends, who now outnumber all the real-world friends I have made in my life, more regularly than I see many others. What does that say?


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