Rod Langway, Craig Laughlin and Road Trips
Caps Hall of Famer Rod Langway had plenty of interesting observations Saturday night, but one story deserves its own post. A fan at Langway's Q and A asked for roommate from hell stories; "Craig Laughlin," Langway replied.
"You can't tell," Langway said, when he was asked for specific tales. But he went on to tell a story about himself that began with him arriving home late at night during a road trip, continued with him going to the washroom, and ended with him standing naked in the hotel hallway.
"It was a true story," he told me later. "I went to the room, I had had a couple of beers. Middle of the night, probably sleepwalking, took a right instead of a left to go back to bed and went out to the hallway and the door closed. Naked. I had to wake up Craig.
"But some other guys, they don't say it, but some guys had to go downstairs to get a key, naked too," Langway added. "Don't forget now, we were dehydrated and all that stuff, and we had four or five beers, pass out, and go to the bathroom. Guys walk in their sleep. I'm sure it's more than just one."
Between periods, I asked Laughlin whether the story was accurate
"Yes, yes it is," the CSN analyst said. "I was asleep, making sure I was preparing for the game the next day. And of course I didn't want to let him in, so I let him stand there for a while. But then we worked it out and he got in."
"There's a lot more stories," Laughlin continued. "Don't forget, back then, we always stayed over in every city we played in, so there was always a team meal and you'd go out for a few beers or whatever. There was a lot of team activity after the games, so we have stories."
"We always had Hot News at every airport," Laughlin said. "Davey Christian would light everybody's newspaper on fire, and airport people would go crazy. It was called Hot News--hey guys, what's the hot news--and he'd have this cigarette lighter under a guy's paper, and all of the sudden the paper would catch flames in the middle of the airport.
"We played the Dollar Bill Game every road trip, where we had a dollar bill and Kenny Houston or some of the guys used to carry the dollar bills that had fishing line on it. And we'd put it in the middle of the walkway at the airport, and it was always a bet, who's gonna stop and turn around and pick up the dollar? The best part was as soon as we fished them in, they'd go down and pick it up, and that's when Davey would move it.
"And then every plane trip we took, the girl would come down with the cart. Every time, you can ask Rod this story, we'd go through every soda that they didn't have on the plane. So of course I'd ask, 'Yeah, I'll have a Mountain Dew.' Sorry sir we don't have a Mountain Dew. Rod would be the next in line, 'Give me a Pibb Cola' or whatever. We'd be driving people crazy.
"The best thing that ever happened was Dale Hunter was always pulling tricks on everybody, and the best one was on one of our rookies, [David A. Jensen]. We were away for like seven days, our cars were parked at Mount Vernon. We flew into D.C., drove to Mount Vernon, we're just dead tired, we get into our cars. Well of course, we're all pulling down the ramp, the young rookie gets in his car, starts it up perfectly, and Dale had put it up on blocks underneath. So the kid's in reverse, it's not going, the kid's in drive it's not going. And we're of course on the way out waving....
"The thing about our teams in the '80s, we always had a bunch of fun guys. Davey Christian was hilarious. Larry Murphy, the funniest guy. When Bryan Murray would leave the room, he'd get up and act like Bryan Murray....
"Hilarious stories. I mean, Bobby Carpenter, I remember he used to always put stuff in the shower, rip off the bed if he got your key and put everything in the shower and turn on the water. Anything just to destroy your sleep, your meal, he did anything. Rod was one of the best, though, because Rod was obviously our leader, but he knew when to have fun. And we had a ton of fun. I could think of a million stories like that."
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