The song tells of someone known as Lather who has just turned 30 and, much to his chagrin, is coming to the realisation that he's expected to behave in a fashion that people find appropriate for his age. The song was written for Jefferson Airplane drummer Spencer Dryden on the occasion of his thirtieth birthday.
Slick was poking fun at Dryden, then her lover, because he was the first person in the band to reach that milestone age of thirty. Speaking on the Fly Jefferson Airplane DVD, Slick repeats these lines and remarks: "Spencer was very child-like. He was more child-like than the rest of the other guys in the band. So it's a song about Spencer Dryden being the old guy but still being a child. I called him Lather because he used a straight-edge razor at the time and had a fairly thick beard - he used lather." However, one passage of the song:
But Lather still finds it a nice thing to do
To lie about nude in the sand
Drawing pictures of mountains that look like bumps
And thrashing the air with his hands