Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Origins: Rooftop . . . Let's Go!

Another catchphrase from my college years that never ceases to make me laugh is Rooftop . . . Let's Go! This one, unlike That's some cool shit, doesn't really make any sense to the general public. In fact, it's hard to really explain why it's so funny since only the people that knew Costas can truly understand. In this post I hope to not only explain the origins of the phrase, but also convey the flavor of the moment in which it was born. To begin, I will explain the man himself . . . Costas.

Our friend Dave Humphrey was smiled upon by the gods when he got his roommate assignment. The guy he got was from Greece and his name was Costas. His last name is forever lost to time. I couldn't pronounce it enough for the neural pathways to actually form a lasting memory. Before you go off on a "Johnson you xenophobic bastard," let me to you something about Costas. He didn't bathe, shower, or in any way wash himself. He owned this outfit that he played basketball in that looked like what Chevy Chase wore when Flecth played in Lakers games. He would go play ball all afternoon, sweat his ass off, then come back to his room, take off his Fletch outfit and fold it up and and put it in the drawer to wear again. It would never see the inside of a washing machine. Ralph was known to refer to him as "Costas, that smelly bitch!"

Well, one night Shanks and I had rented the video game Maximum Carnage for the SNES. OK, this game sucked so bad it is hard to describe. It was based on the equally crappy Spider-man miniseries of the same name. You old-school gamers will remember that before the Playstation, there was no saving of games. You had to save up enough lives to be able to win a game or else it was back to the beginning. I can remember guys who would pause games for days at a time so they wouldn't lose their place and have to start all over. Well, Maximum Carnage did not have many options for picking up extra lives. Not to mention, it was hard as shit. Not hard in a challenging way either. The various thugs would beat your ass and then it was back to the beginning of the level. The only way you could stay on a given level was to pick up some sort of "spider coin" midway through each level.

Well, alternately, Shanks and I would die and get kicked back to various starting points. Eventually Costas walked into the lounge and started watching us play the game. We were already frustrated with this piece of shit game enough without that smelly bitch coming in to watch. The level we were on at that moment was the rooftop. Everytime we would get kicked back to the start a full screen graphic would come up that said "Rooftop Let's Go." Each and every time that screen came up, Costas said, with great enthusiasm, "Rooftop! . . . Let's Go!" and would especially drag out the sound of the word "let's". That was all the fuck he would say! Not a word else. Just that every single time! It would have compounded the frustration of the game had it not been so damn funny.

Kevin Marsh and Brian Polak were also their to witness the birth of "Rooftop . . . Let's Go!" and still remember it fondly. I'm sure Costas is somewhere in Greece right now sweating, not bathing, and living his life oblivious to the fact that a bunch of Americans are still laughing about his inane commentary on our gaming. I doubt he even remembers saying it. But, if you ever read this Costas, I'd like to thank you for making me laugh to this day. You smelly bitch.


Andrew Shanks said...

Damn son, I laughed out loud at the retelling of that story! I think it should be added as a point of ODOR that Costas said in the Greek army (don't ask) he showered once a week.

Now I don't know about you, but that stench would rival the nerve gas used against the Kurds by Saddam Hussein!!!

Chris Johnson said...

I remember him saying that every man in Greece had to servee in the army for a little while. Can you imagine the smell in the barracks? hahahahaha!

bejaypea said...

Thank you for writing this. But I think I have to throw up now.

Chris Johnson said...

You can still recall the distinctive smell of Costas? I am glad I don't share that burden. Unfortunately, I still bear the mental imprint of Dave's smell! I remember spraying his stinky ass with lysol while he was asleep!