The first hour or so was spent digging through his clothes, from overcoats to underwear, while making faces at Huxtable sweaters and cringing at jokey T-shirts. A two-inch-long mummified scorpion clung to the furry lining of an overcoat, tail raised permanently over its back; we paused to remove it and take pictures. Between swallows of beer, we wondered aloud whether we'd finally find his will, and then let out short, knowing laughs.
We were sifting through a box of office things -- scratch pads, a stapler, a grown-up Trapper Keeper -- when I spotted a file marked "To be entered on computer." When I opened it, the first thing I saw was a stack of recipe cards with my dad's writing on them. The design on the left-hand side was not new to me; these were the cards he'd pull out when we cooked together.
If my dad had ever gotten around to typing all those cards up, I would never have received my inheritance.