1503: Leonardo da Vinci designs the first fog nozzle. It bears a striking resemblance to the Selecto-o-matic. Unfortunately, the design is on the back of the Mona Lisa, so no one notices for over 500 years.
1630: Galileo’s lab assistant suggested that flowing water through the tubes he had shaped for his invention the telescope could be a good way to put fires out. Galileo scoffs at the idea. His lab assistant, Alfredo Taskforce Tipiano decides to immigrate to America with his wife and six sons as soon as someone opens a good pizza place there.
1737: Samuel Akron, a volunteer firefighter in Philadelphia, puts his finger over the tip of a pressurized leather hose, generating a spray. He takes his idea to Ben Franklin, the inventor of the bucket and smooth bore. Ben tell him it’s a stupid idea and returns to flying his kite.
1780: An American Indian inventor, Big Water Elk-hart, graduates from engineering school and as his first project, designs a nozzle with a straight stream and impinging jet fog. He tells friends, “I bet the Navy and Coast Guard—when they get formed—would like this.” His friend laugh and Elk-hart, depressed and disappointed, goes for a pizza at the Taskforce Tipano Family Pizzeria. He sits down over a pepperoni and sausage with Alfredo Tipiano III and pulls out the parchment showing his design. Tipiano tells him “my nonno had a similar idea once” and the rest is history.