At Home With Erykah Badu

We move the fruit to a dining table toward the back of the house, where Badu feeds a spare lettuce leaf to another of Mars’s unlikely, half-wanted pets: a guinea pig named Young Tonya. Nearby, seven painted cardboard boxes sit on a windowsill. Badu tells me that she’s starting the process of writing an autobiography, and that the boxes are a kind of outline. “I just painted them,” she says. “I’m gonna line them up on the table, one for each chapter, and I’m gonna drop things in each box so I can have a visual for what I’m doing.” Red is for family, orange for sex — “baby daddies, love affairs” — yellow for the creative life, green for her work as a doula and “holistic healer,” light blue for music, darker blue for spirituality, and a purple box that she says is a mystery.

A second profile of Erykah Badu is out this week; Vinson Cunningham nailed her “consistent deployment of irony.” (The other one is longer, but this one will make you feel higher.) Chico DeBarge and Dave Chappelle make appearances, as do lots of pets. We also learn that her band is called “The Cannabinoids.” Earlier today in cannabinoids.