If you're familiar with the oft-banned 1972 cult classic film "Pink Flamingos," then you'll know that John Waters' upcoming one-man Christmas show at The Space at Westbury is one for grown-ups only -- and only those who appreciate the subversive and dark humor found in the irreverent intellectual's films, books, writings, artwork and stand-up comedy.
What can folks who don't know about "A John Waters Christmas" expect to experience at the show?
I think good advice of how to get through this insane holiday that's emotionally fraught with extremes. People go crazy at Christmas. People love Christmas. There's all types. There are people who start putting up decorations on July 4. And there's the kind that hates Christmas. I embrace Christmas and love it, but I am certainly against it being in state buildings. I go to living crèches the way other people go to Halloween horror houses.
What's your favorite Christmas song, and why?
I have a Christmas album that's not in print anymore. "Santa Claus Is a Black Man" which is on it] is a really great song. Also, "I'm Fat Daddy, I'm Santa Claus." Paul "Fat Daddy" Johnson] was the black DJ in Baltimore . . . on the Buddy Deane show that I certainly based a lot of "Hairspray" on. He was my idol as a kid.
What about some of the more traditional Christmas songs?
You asked me for my favorites. I always wished Ike and Tina Turner had done "O Little Town of Bethlehem." I wish Ol' Dirty Bastard had done a Christmas album. I wish Mrs. Miller had done a Christmas album. . . . I think Johnny Mathis, one of my idols, has made some of the best Christmas albums ever. . . . The best thing about Johnny Mathis concerts is that every one of his fans wears Christmas corsages.
Have you done that?
I haven't, but I am thinking of it. I'm waiting for Comme des Garçons to design a Christmas corsage for men. She might. might be the only designer who would.
What do you think of the inflatable Christmas decorations people put on their lawns?
I love seeing them when vandals pop them, and then especially when the three kings are deflated in the slush. That's such a Diane Arbus shot.
You've had so many nicknames. What is your favorite?
I guess the Pope of Trash because William Burroughs called me that, but I've been exploiting that for so long. . . . The Duke of Dirt was one I liked.
WHAT "A John Waters Christmas"
WHEN | WHERE 8 p.m. Saturday at The Space at Westbury, 250 Post Ave.
INFO $35-$100; 516-283-5566, thespaceatwestbury.com