The New York Times has an article and accompanying video about Chan Marshall of Cat Power–more specifically, about the total alcoholic breakdown everyone pretty much already guessed she was having earlier this year. Strangely, hearing that she’s been so truly fucked up makes me like her a lot more. I used to think that her goofy-retarded stage persona was born out of an extreme form of passive-aggressive behavior. But knowing that it was actually the product of a combination of rock-bottom boozing and–if the report that she “obsessively chas[ed] ‘bad spirits’ around her apartment with a lighter and sage,” is to be believed–mental instability, she gets a retroactive pass from me. It doesn’t hurt that in the video she describes the overwhelming, life-altering power of Mary J. Blige’s music and persona. Play the Mary card and you’re good with me every time.