A friend, who shall go unnamed, noted on his Facebook profile that he cries at random times because he misses his mom, and that the silliest things remind him of her. I feel the same way about my dad.
Meyer Louis Poriles set foot on this planet on May 3, 1925. Born to Max and Dora, he was the older brother of Shirley. He spent much of his 75 years being stubborn, opinionated, and loud. Gee, I wonder who I take after? The one thing from my dad that I happily inherited was a keen eye. That is, an eye for beautiful furniture, works of art, antiques, etc. Although not a man of means, my father refused to be a bystander in the game of acquiring aesthetically pleasing objects. He managed to procure beauty for the small home he shared with my mother, all by sheer dint of will and dogged determination. Back in the heyday of his acquisitions, he befriended art gallery owners, antique shop owners, and furniture store proprietors. Through the relationships he developed he was able to purchase many beautiful things – a bronze urn with burgundy marble base and snakes he had converted into a lamp; a lovely crewelwork coffee table he had framed into a wall hanging; an Ivan Le Lorraine Albright watercolor; a handwired chandelier, etc. He was always on the hunt, and was rewarded by his patience.
As an only child I was dragged to every art gallery, furniture store, and museum imaginable. Somehow it rubbed off on me, and I ended up majoring in art history. I love art and design magazines, and nothing thrills me more than seeing an object of beauty that I know my father would love as well. Sometimes I feel the most alone when this happens, because I know the only person who would appreciate the experience as much as I do is no longer here to share it with me. But the truth is that my father will always be part of these quiet, revelatory moments, if only in spirit. They couldn’t happen without his influence, and they will continue to happen with the full recognition that he had a hand in making them come to fruition. So thanks, dad, for your keen eye and your unrelenting quest for beauty. My days and my discoveries will always owe a great debt to your tutelage and enthusiam.