“I dunno.” His shoulders climbed to his ears in an exaggerated shrug.
“Baja?” I mentioned the Mexican restaurant in the Marina where we went on our first official date in '92, the same place where we've celebrated our anniversary every year, except for the sixth one, the year we were separated and riled up. That celebration was at El Cholo in Santa Monica, and after a half-eaten meal, we went outside to argue and smoke. Billy threw his gift at me. I barely caught the box of candy before it bounced off my chest to the ground. There was no anniversary kiss that night.
“Sure.” He wasn’t paying any attention. He stood in front of his DJ rack, mixing on his DCD Pro 400, and his headphones covered one ear.
“Well, it’s our thirteenth, you know.”
“I kno-o-o-w.” Auto-response. I felt the temper trigger twitching. Why should I care more about this than he does?
“This is going to be our last anniversary in this house, you know.” I sighed an angry sigh, willing him to actually turn around to look at me.
“Shit, Billy! If you don’t fucking care…” I didn’t bother completing the sentence.
“Hey! My mishap is the fact that I'm destined to snap.” He’d been randomly repeating this phrase for weeks, ever since he rediscovered TLC’s CrazySexyCool.
“You’re really pissing me off.”
“God, what are you getting mad at? Stop being a meanie.”
“You’re not paying attention.”
“And I’m talking! Shit!” I walked out, stomped down the stairs, and sat at our kitchen table paging through the new Entertainment Weekly. After a few minutes, I slunk back upstairs.
Billy glanced at me when I walked back into the room. “I’m still mixing.” His eyebrows went up into an arrow that pointed toward heaven, and he smiled.
“Sure, dummy guy. Whatever.” He went back to the mix board, his butt and feet moving in a perfect unheard rhythm, lost in his music, lost in the magic he heard every time he slipped on his headphones, lost forever in the brightest light, the light that has all of the colors I just can’t seem to see.