One of the weirdest and, in my opinion, most oddly hilarious characters ever to appear on Saturday Night Live was Stefon Zelesky, played by Bill Hader. Stefon was a club kid who would join Seth Meyers from time to time as a city correspondent on the Weekend Update to give viewers the low-down on the latest and greatest (and fake) underground clubs in New York City. Stefon had the skinny on the hippest and most elusive party scene in the Big Apple; without his insider information, none of us would have a clue that these clubs existed, much less have access to them.
During one episode, Stefon introduced us to the club Crease. "This place has everything," he said. "Lights, psychos, Furbies, screaming babies in Mozart wigs, sunburned drifters with soap sud beards."
"Soap sud beards?" Seth interrupted.
"You know, that thing where the hobo becomes a rich man, so they take that big bubble bath?"
(Side note, if I had won the billion dollar Powerball earlier this year and was asked by a reporter what I was going to do with the money, I was definitely going to say "soap sud beard"!)
Stefon's club scene was ludicrous and nonsensical, but always good for a laugh. The image of a hobo taking a giant bubble bath strikes an especially funny chord simply because we are so familiar with that "Trading Places" kind of plot line: a rich man trades places with a poor man and through the experience they both end up finding their own kind of redemption. The premise itself is as almost as absurd as a screaming baby with a Mozart wig. What billionaire would give it all up and trade places with a sunburned drifter?
And then I remember that I am the sunburned drifter. And that I have been given keys to the mansion, giant bath tub and all.
At the risk of sounding irreverent, I think that Jesus would do well filling in for Stefon on the Weekend Update one of these days. There's a pretty amazing party called Kingdom I'm sure he'd like to tell us about; and while the invitation list is wide open, you do have to know the right person in order to find your way in. And, like Crease, this place is going to be full of sunburned drifters with soap sud beards. Every single guest at the party has been dirt poor and covered in filth; but the club owner traded his riches for our rags, and we get to trade our ashes of mourning for a crown of beauty, and our despair for a garment of joy.
The party starts now, and closing time is never. Furbies not included.