'My Life' At 15: 'Mary's Joint'

"Unnecessary pain (pain is pain) / Tell me who would get the blame (you know it hurts) / If we should go astray / What would we do? What could we say?"

There comes a time every person's life when feeling stops making sense. When numb is all you have, and you can't even label what you're going through. That's what "Mary's Joint" is on the My Life album: the point where things just don't make sense anymore. Where asking for forgiveness seems crazy. Where promises made should be promises kept. Where making it work is the only thing. Mary J. Blige just lets it all out on ole boy, reminding him of what he said, of what she needs. Of what she's willing to do to make it work. It's the closest we ever got to MJB rapping on the album, like she's looking in the mirror and freestyling her feelings. Numb to the pain. Past the point of exhaustion. Major props to Puffy and The Hitmen for coaxing that out of her. For getting her to that thin line between love and hate without letting her cross it. They especially get props for calling it "Mary's Joint" because it totally is. The one where delirium is a necessary pain, even if a label isn't. The one joint where she has her say.

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